Saturday, October 13, 2007

A Kiss Before Bombing

These pictures are from the Unapologetic Mexican. He says, "Here are images, I wanted to lay them out. As glimpses. Isolated glimpses into another country, one that mostly exists for us in scary soundbytes and media-approved shots of hangings and flame and the dark dark chador and the obscuring burqa. We pump the hot gas of our fear and media worship into those shadowy shapes, because after all, all of us here in the USA are experts at marketing and advertising and image. We take joy in our trade. This is our most intensive area of training.

We are mid-commercial right now. Halfway through the award-winning "Bomb Iran" messaging blitz. I give you a few outtakes that might not make it into the glossy front page spread.

The tricky part about laying out images in a sequence is that, depending on the order, a story wants to connect the previously separate moment. The Glimpse becomes a Thought, and then a Tale. But I did not want to force some clunky narrative...which my hands seemed to want to do no matter how I moved around the pictures. So I ended up initially grouping them by color to solve my problem. That gave me a basic blueprint that I could follow without fear of setting up something too contrived. Let the colors lead the way, let the pigment and the paint and the hue have its say."

A woman looking into Khomeini's tomb.

Meadows as green, flowers as wild.

The mosque in Naqse-Jahan Square in Isfahan.

A Kurdish-Persian wedding.

In Najar, Iran. Kurdistan. People descended from the Medes.

Bolhassan, Iran. The cluster of homes that do not seem ruled by a grid, but rather naturally occurring as groups of people settled near one another. This village of people was chemically bombed by Saddam Hussein with munitions provided by the US in the Iraq-Iran war in 1987 and 1988.

A cooling tower on a museum roof in Kashan, Iran.

Naqse-Jahan Square, Esfahan, Iran.

The Azadi Tower, or "The Freedom Tower."

Bam, Iran. The same year this was taken, an earthquake destroyed the city, taking 40,000 lives.

September 8 is International Literature Day in Iran.

Shirley Temple Day.

A major highway in Tehran. They noticed, and titled it "Inconvenient Evidence."

More Iranian schoolchildren. Probably in California.

Children play outside Ali Qapu Palace, in Esfahan.

Women poking fun at something.

A woman protests against the US-led bombing of Afghanistan.

Sheep graze their way to freedom.

The Grand Bazaar.

Women in Arsanjan mash pomegranates.

God Bless Humanity.


Naj said...


You know Marc, if one steps out of the game, and watches it from the outside of the realm of humanity and emotions, it becomes an amusing and intriguing plot!

good you reproduced this. it looks more concise here :)

MarcLord said...

I hope we can both stay well outside it, Naj, and remain amused. Funny, though, I should like nothing better than to visit Iran.

In (mostly) reproducing these pictures, I gained an appreciation for just how much WORK he and his readers must have put into assembling them. I'm proud to host them, and notice that I forgot to link to the Un-Mexican. Will fix.

Naj said...

Outside of the political game, not Iran! :)

But as an Iranian, we are born with politics. we learn in our history books that Iran is a hot commodity, that it's been trampled on by the orientals going west, the occidentals going east, that Russia wants its Persian gulf, and that so does America, and thus they will deter each other for ever, and in so doing grind us to halt or to ground, if we let them. And we have learned that science. art, philosophy and literature are devices by which we have saved ourselves and our history from all the bloodshed!

I am happy we have the cultural heritage that we do, and I am happy that we are a diverse and creative nation, and a proud one too, deeply proud.

And that, we have learned is the character bestowed to us by the mountains, the high plateau on which we reside: Iran!

If some of your leaders red history, and stepped out of their Euro-centric cocoon they would realize the intricacy and the complexity of Iran, that has remained off-limits to the colonization processes that have taken place to its east (India) and west (Arabia).

This is yet another one of teh same old stories. We shall survive it! People who recite stories of 5 thousand years ago to their grandchildren, do not just bend and vanish on an American's whim!

MarcLord said...

I too would be proud of such a country. ;-)

Anonymous said...

"A woman protests against the US-led bombing of Afghanistan"...THATS ME!!!!! :D

Gayle Etcheverry said...

Where did you find the photograph of the woman and the sign "God Bless Humanity"?

I have a website with the same words and that photograph says exactly what I try to do in words. It's beautiful... thank you for sharing this blog.