Moustachioed Women and Rhinoplastic Girls
This photography project is my experimental and cultural exploration of religious dogma, gender inequality and censorship in contemporary Iran.
In this practice I use social media as a source to inspire the creation of staged portraits of contemporary Iranian women. As a counterpoint, guided by Antoin Sevruguin’s historical photographs, I recreate images of Iranian women from the 19th Century to confront the ideals of beauty as fleeting and fickle and reveal the impact of the male gaze on the face and female identity in the Middle East.
By considering the influence of ‘Islamic fundamentalism under the Iranian theocracy’ on the beliefs and feelings of Iranian women, I seek to enter into a deeper understanding of the culture and behaviour of women in the Middle East. Emphasising the distinction between modern expectations and ancient traditions, I portray women’s choice of fashion, appearance, and beauty to represent how the limitations and pressures of the male-oriented culture can affect the perception, self-esteem, self-image, and individual identity of women.