Iranian Experimental Film, Part 1: The Artistic Radicals

Wednesday, May 25, 2022 - 7:00 pm


Manouchehr Tayyab, still from The Rhythm (1964). Courtesy of the artist.

In the first of a two-part program on Iranian experimental cinema, guest programmer Somayeh Khakshoor presents rarely seen short works by pioneering filmmakers Manouchehr Tayyab, Khosrow Sinai, Farshad Fadaian, and Mohammad Reza Aslani (whose feature Chess of the Wind had a held-over run at The Cinematheque earlier this year). Although all these films, with the exception of Ars Poetica, were either commissioned or made within governmental institutions, their makers found creative ways not to compromise their radical artistic inclinations. This was partly due to the freedom experienced by artists in Iran in the 1960s. But even Fadaian’s film, made in the 1980s under very different historical circumstances, seems far too poetic for an industrial film. This collection of works presents a set of contrasting approaches in capturing the nuanced voice of the inanimate in dialogue with the animate.

Programmed and introduced by Somayeh Khakshoor.

The Rhythm (Ritm)
Iran 1964
Manouchehr Tayyab
9 min.
Coldness of Iron (Sardi ahan)
Iran 1969
Khosrow Sinai
18 min.
Stone, The Silent Mother (Sang Mādar‑e Khāmush)
Iran 1988
Farshad Fadaian
10 min.
Hassanlou Chalice (Jām‑e Hasanlou)
Iran 1967
Mohammad Reza Aslani
20 min.
Ars Poetica (Sharh‑e Hāl) 
Iran 1967–68
Khosrow Sinae
11 min.
Somayeh Khakshoor is an Iranian moving-image artist and a recent MFA graduate of the Interdisciplinary Arts program at SFU School for the Contemporary Arts.