Three or Four Ir/relevant Stories Art and Hyper-Politics

This practice-based PhD is presented in the form of a book that documents, comments upon and provides a context for the artistic projects included in the doctoral thesis work, completed between 2014 and 2020. This investigation admits a discussion of a state of hyper-politics where each everyday gesture and micro-event is written into macro-political events.

The opening project deals with his grandfather's surviving photographs which had been stored in a shoebox - traces of a life as an itinerant photographer in District 10 of southwestern Tehran between 1956 and 1968. In this working-class area, the grandfather, Gholamreza Amirbegi, invited people to pose in front of a simple but ingenious box camera, the kind of which could be found in several places in the global south. In Pakistan it is called roo kich, "soul-catcher." In the doctoral thesis, the work undertaken with the photographs becomes an accurate and tender mapping of the effects of what the artist/researcher calls an "unconscious colonial memory" of image production, from the point of view of the proletariat. They manifest themselves as colonial fantasies about dervishes, but here gestures from Bollywood films and Yugoslav partisan films are also revealed.

In an extensive work based on the animated character Professor Balthazar and Zagreb's animation school, the global historiography of the Non-Aligned Movement is examined in relation to the culture industry and aesthetic experiments in animation. The project includes a "monument to the invisible citizen" which has been shown in a series of exhibitions, and has finally been donated in the form of a play-sculpture to a school in Zagreb.

The last project discusses the representation of global resistance in relation to a specific political gesture in Tehran - the Palestinian monument in the centre of the city. Why does the monument place the Palestinian map upside down? And what happens to art when it crosses borders?

Three or Four Irrelevant Stories, Art and Hyper-Politics has been carried out within the framework of the KTD program (Art Technology Design), Konstfack's collaboration with the Royal Institute of Technology. Parts of the project have been shown at, for example, Marabouparken, Stockholm, Centre for Photography, Stockholm, Kalmar Art Museum, Malmö Art Museum, Timisoara Biennale and Center of Contemporary Art, Riga.

Free download of the book here (PDF)