lives and works
New York, USA
BA, University of California, Berkeley, USA, 1983
about the artist
Shirin Neshat masterfully navigates the media of photography, video art, and film in order to enlighten the world on the plight of the Islamic female in today’s increasingly globalized and also politicized world. Through presenting still or moving imagery that is at the same time visually arresting in erotic, mystical, and poetic ways—as well as mutedly subversive in its philosophical, religious, and spiritual implications—the artist gives the Iranian woman, perhaps most urgently the one within herself, an audible and even powerful voice. Having left Iran before the revolution to pursue higher education abroad, Neshat is now based and working in New York City. Sentiments of exile, displacement, loss, and memory permeate her suite of works that advocate a humanism beyond boundaries and categorically universal. Neshat has received numerous grants and awards, including the New York Foundation for the Arts Photography Fellowship in 1996, the First International Prize at the 48th edition of the Venice Biennale in 1999, the Dorothy and Lillian Gish Prize in New York in 2006, and the Rockefeller Foundation Media Arts Fellowship and the Cultural Achievement Award given by the Asia Society in New York in 2008. Her photographs exhibited at galleries and museums and her videos screened at festivals and art spaces all over the world, the artist has gone on to produce a feature film, Women Without Men, which then won the Silver Lion at the 66th Venice Film Festival in 2009.