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Between 2004 and 2007 Iranian artist-filmmaker Mania Akbari made six video artworks, entitled: Self (2004), Repression (2004), Sin (2004), Escape (2004), Fear (2005), and Devastation (2005). Lasting an average of six minutes each, these films explore the malleability of identity in relation to social boundaries, beliefs, and expectations.


We are shown the many faces and different personae of the artist, which she links to the shaping emotional impact of family, memories and personal fears and dreams, as well as our desire to break away from the prison of the self.

Directed by: Mania Akbari
Assistant Director: Amin Maher


30 min, 2007

Review by City of Women Organisation


Mania Akbari’s 6 Video Arts – Self, Repression, Sin, Escape, Fear and Devastation, shot between 2003-2005 – come as a project which no longer cherishes such (idealistic?) hopes. There’s even more to it: its artistic credo is expressed and constructed literally on the scraps, very tiny pieces. The basic means of expression used by the authoress in every single of the six videos is the so-called ‘split-screen’, the combination of a several smaller, separately framed images – scraps – within the same action. Sometimes such images are only two, sometimes they multiply into dozens. Although most of these images are symbolic, at some points even abstract always monotone and repetitive (so that it could be probably better watched as an installation or live picture in a gallery) – this time Mania would have serious problems denying the explicit and primary political context of all six videos. 

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