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The Writing on the Wall

by MJ in Tehran

10 Feb 2010 17:502 Comments

As Tehran braces for a fresh bout of protests on 22 Bahman (February 11), the anniversary of the revolution, public spaces in the city have been peppered with graffiti promoting the date. Dozens of photos of green messages -- on road signs, lamp posts, phone booths, and of course, walls -- have been compiled on Facebook albums as well, offering a sampling of visible signs of the political tension gripping the country.

First, though, I'd like to share five photos I took in January, which are not specific to 22 Bahman, but which I found indicative of broader aspects of the current turmoil. -- MJ

MJ is a photographer and visual artist who exhibits in Tehran, Dubai, and the United States. The photos below were taken in January 2010 in Iran.

mj1-kashan-bazaar.jpg

At the Bazaar in the town of Kashan the green banners strung above this merchant's shop immediately caught my eye for its bold public display. Further on, I caught sight of a Khatami poster above another shopkeeper's door.

mj1-kashan-bazaar2.jpg

This rustic brick wall in an alley in northern Tehran bears the ubiquitous green V -- but an angry respondent has added = WC in red.

mj2-wc.jpg

Instead of a derogatory response like the one above, this green respondent has encircled the black "velayat" (Supreme Leader) with a whimsical heart.

mJ3-velayat-heart.jpg

One of many "paint-bomb" splatters of creative resistance.

mj4-paint-bomb.jpg

Relentless censorship: white paint won't make it go away.

mj5-censorship.jpg

22 Bahman (compiled from Facebook)

viva-green.jpg phone-wall.jpg

road-sign.jpg

sidewalk-road.jpg

mashhad-stay.jpg shop-rey.jpg

Copyright © 2009 Tehran Bureau

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2 Comments

Hah! That street sign is in my old neighborhood.

Pirouz / February 11, 2010 7:33 AM

Political Graffiti Installation by Coup Regime
Art Review
http://jigsawnovich.blogspot.com/2010/03/political-graffiti-in-iran.html

julie / March 20, 2010 7:26 AM