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Assar Art Gallery May 2013 Mohammad Ghazali Tehran Inclined To The Right 01
Tehran

بودن و نديدن

يادداشتي بر عكس‌هاي محمد غزالي

تهران كمي مايل به راست، عنوان مجموعه‌اي از عكس‌هاي محمد غزالي است كه به روش سهل و سريع پولارويد عكاسي شده‌اند. اما فيلم‌هاي پولارويد مورد استفاده‌ي وي، فاسد و به اصطلاح تاريخ گذشته بوده‌اند. همين امر باعث شده رنگ‌هاي اين عكس‌ها نادرست باشد و در مواردي فرم‌ها دچار اعوجاج شوند و در هم بريزند و در بيشتر عكس‌ها بخشي از تصوير ثبت نشده و سفيد باقي بماند. آن‌چه در اين عكس‌ها ثبت شده، بخش‌هايي از خيابان‌ است. اين كه كدام خيابان‌ها و كدام شهر شايد چندان اهميتي هم نداشته باشد، البته همان‌گونه كه از عنوان مجموعه پيداست، خيابان‌هاي تهران است. اين عكس‌ها، كه به واسطه‌ي فاسد بودن فيلمشان احساسي از كهنه‌گي را القا مي‌كنند، در واقع هيچ توصيف سنجيده و يا تحليل دقيقي از چيزي ارائه نمي‌دهند. از سوي ديگر، اين عكس‌ها مستند، خياباني و اتفاقي هستند. همين امر ميزان تسلط، قدرت و نظارت عكاس بر تصوير نهايي را كم كرده و اين عكس‌ها را به آن نگاه خنثي و بي‌طرف و بي‌غرضي كه عكاسي مستند مدعي آن است نزديك مي‌كند. ثبت تصوير روي فيلم پولارويد فاسد با عكاسي بدون منظرياب (visor) شباهت بسيار دارد. در اين حالت نه فقط رنگ و نور، كه حدود كادر هم چندان با خواست عكاس مطابقت ندارد. گويي كه عكاس فقط محل عكس‌برداري را انتخاب كرده كه همان موضوع عكس‌هاست؛ خيابان.

خيابان از مهم‌ترين اماكن عمومي شهر است. در اماكن عمومي نظير كوچه، بازار، دانشگاه، ورزشگاه، پارك، رستوران و امثال آن، فرد با افرادي برخورد مي‌كند و گاه رابطه برقرار مي‌كند كه خود آنها را انتخاب نكرده است. اما شايد خيابان مهم‌ترين اين اماكن باشد زيرا نحوه‌ي برخورد افراد با يكديگر در خيابان متفاوت است با كوچه كه فضايي محلي‌تر و آشناتر است و ويژگي‌هاي همسايگي در آن وجود دارد. و نيز خيابان بسيار متفاوت است با اماكني مانند دانشگاه كه به هر حال فرد در آن از قدرت انتخاب نسبي برخوردار است. خيابان محل عبور است، مسير است؛ از خانه به جايي و از آن جا به خانه. در خانه كه فضاي شخصي است فرد آزادانه هر كار كه بخواهد مي‌كند و در خيابان به قواعد و قوانين اجتماع تن مي‌دهد. از سویي فضاي خصوصي و مثلاً خانه محل شكل‌گيري خاطره‌هاي شخصي است و فضاي عمومي و به خصوص خيابان محل شكل‌گيري خاطره‌ي جمعي. 

در عكس‌هاي غزالي، ويژگي نوستالژيك بودن پولارويد با خاطره‌ي جمعي خيابان هم‌سو گرديده است. بازخواني وي از اين خاطره‌ي جمعي در قالب عكس‌هايي از دست رفته كه بخشي از موضوع خود را اصلاً ثبت نكرده‌اند كه نشان دهند و آن‌چه نشان مي‌دهند هم تصويري مبهم است، بيننده را با عدم حضور آن‌چه زماني حاضر بود مواجه مي‌كند؛ آن‌چه بود و ديگر نيست و حالا ما كه آن‌جا در خيابان‌ها بوديم بينندگان تصاويري هستيم و شايد مي‌خواهيم اما نمي‌بينيم.

در نهايت اين كه پولارويد نوستالژيك است و نوستالژيا خاطره‌انگيز است و خاطره همواره در گذشته است و گذشته روياگونه است. و خيابان محل عبور است و هر آن‌چه در عبور است مي‌گذرد و آن‌چه گذشته است ديگر نخواهد بود.

زروان روح‌بخشان

بهار 1392

Being and Not Seeing
A Note on Mohammad Ghazali’s photographs 
Tehran Inclined to the Right is the title of a collection of photographs by Mohammad Ghazali that have been photographed in the quick and easy Polaroid style.  The Polaroid films used by him however were outdated and as one would say, expired.  This very fact has caused the colors to be incorrect and in some cases for the forms to be distorted.  And in most of the photographs, a part of the image is missing and left unexposed.  What have been captured in the photographs are parts of street and it might not even matter which city or street they are, but as the title of the series implies, they are the streets of Tehran.  In fact, these photographs that evoke a vintage feel as they were captured on expired film don’t provide a premeditated description or precise analysis of anything.  Furthermore, these are street photographs, documentary and incidental.  And this has reduced the photographer’s amount of proficiency, authority and control over the final image and more so resembles the kind of neutral, impartial and unbiased look that documentary photography claims to contain.  Capturing an image on expired Polaroid film is very much similar to photography without a visor.  In this method, not only color and light but also the composition is not the photographer’s absolute intention.  It’s as though, the photographer has only chosen the location which in this case is the subject of the photographs: the street.  
Street is one of the most important public spaces within a city.  In public spaces such as street, bazaar, university, gym and such, an individual encounters other individuals and occasionally starts a relationship that he himself has not chosen.  But the street might be the most important of these spaces because people’s encountering on the street is different from an alley that is a more local and familiar space and neighborhoods exist therein.  And street is still very different from institutions such as university in which the person has the ability to choose to some extent.  Street is a place of passage, it’s a way; from home to a place and from there homeward.  At home-a private space-one can freely do as he pleases whereas on the street, he has to follow the social rules.  On the one hand, private space, namely home, is the place where personal memories are made and on the other hand, public space, especially street, is where collective memory is formed.   
In Ghazali’s photographs, the nostalgic residue of Polaroid has fallen in line with the collective memory of the street.  His assessment of such memories in form of damaged photos that haven’t saved the entire subject to show-and even what they show is indistinct-place the viewer in a position to face absence of something that used to be, something that existed but no longer does, and us, who ourselves were on the streets one day are now viewing these images and we might want to but are unable to see anything.  
In the end, the fact of the matter is that Polaroid is nostalgic and nostalgia is reminiscence and memory always belongs to the past and the past is trancelike.  And street is the place of passing and whatever is in passing passes by and what has passed by will never exist again.
Zarvan Rouhbakhshan
Spring 2013   

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More About Tehran

Overview and HistoryTehran is the capital of Iran and the largest city in the Middle East, with a population of fifteen million people living under the peaks of the Alborz mountain range.Although archaeological evidence places human activity around Tehran back into the years 6000BC, the city was not mentioned in any writings until much later, in the thirteenth century. It's a relatively new city by Iranian standards.But Tehran was a well-known village in the ninth century. It grew rapidly when its neighboring city, Rhages, was destroyed by Mongolian raiders. Many people fled to Tehran.In the seventeenth century Tehran became home to the rulers of the Safavid Dynasty. This is the period when the wall around the city was first constructed. Tehran became the capital of Iran in 1795 and amazingly fast growth followed over the next two hundred years.The recent history of Tehran saw construction of apartment complexes and wide avenues in place of the old Persian gardens, to the detriment of the city's cultural history.The city at present is laid out in two general parts. Northern Tehran is more cosmopolitan and expensive, southern Tehran is cheaper and gets the name "downtown."Getting ThereMehrabad airport is the original one which is currently in the process of being replaced by Imam Khomeini International Airport. The new one is farther away from the city but it now receives all the international traffic, so allow an extra hour to get there or back.TransportationTehran driving can be a wild free-for-all like some South American cities, so get ready for shared taxis, confusing bus routes and a brand new shiny metro system to make it all better. To be fair, there is a great highway system here.The metro has four lines, tickets cost 2000IR, and they have segregated cars. The women-only carriages are the last two at the end, FYI.Taxis come in two flavors, shared and private. Private taxis are more expensive but easier to manage for the visiting traveler. Tehran has a mean rush hour starting at seven AM and lasting until 8PM in its evening version. Solution? Motorcycle taxis! They cut through the traffic and any spare nerves you might have left.People and CultureMore than sixty percent of Tehranis were born outside of the city, making it as ethnically and linguistically diverse as the country itself. Tehran is the most secular and liberal city in Iran and as such it attracts students from all over the country.Things to do, RecommendationsTake the metro to the Tehran Bazaar at the stop "Panzda Gordad". There you can find anything and everything -- shoes, clothes, food, gold, machines and more. Just for the sight of it alone you should take a trip there.If you like being outside, go to Darband and drink tea in a traditional setting. Tehranis love a good picnic and there are plenty of parks to enjoy. Try Mellat park on a friday (fridays are public holidays), or maybe Park Daneshjou, Saaii or Jamshidieh.Remember to go upstairs and have a look around, always always always! The Azadi Tower should fit the bill; it was constructed to commemorate the 2500th anniversary of the Persian Empire.Tehran is also full of museums such as:the Contemporary Art Museumthe Abghine Musuem (glass works)the 19th century Golestan Royal Palace museumthe museum of carpets (!!!)Reza Abbasi Museum of extraordinary miniaturesand most stunning of all,the Crown Jewels Museum which holds the largest pink diamond in the world and many other jaw-dropping jewels.Text by Steve Smith.