Setareh Fatehi Nooshin Askari


From : Frankfurt Amsterdam
To: Tehran


Dance, Visual Arts

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How did this grant contribute to the realization of your project in regard to artistic exchange, local cultural development and/or the promotion of cultural diversity?

This report is a combined narration of Setareh Fatehi and Nooshin askari who have been invited to BonGah space for the development of swim\او. This performance research was initiated by Setareh Fatehi as a part of her MA project in DAS choreography program in Amsterdam. In this project Setareh has invited the practice of 4 other artists to occupy a virtual space in the research. Nooshin Askari, Yalda Pakzad, Reyhan Khakinejad and Behrang Najafi were present in the first phase of this research. Our days in Bon Gah residency formed itself around: Understanding the dynamic of working in the space and dealing with the phenomena of running an independent art space in Tehran and its suburbs.\Examining the space of BonGah as a place to host swim\او.\Receiving feedbacks on the presentation of swim\او in September.\Looking at the screens and lights and processes of image making. swim\او is an invitation for the local culture to look at different shades of presence that are surrounding us, by studying the gaze that we project on the others. The word culture, in this research, could be replaced by modes of longing, imaging, imagining, flirting and gazing.

How does exchange, networking and international contacts contribute to the development of your artistic and cultural project?

in the time that the measure of presence is not closeness, where should our body be? in the time that the measure of closeness is not touch, whose phone do we want to be hosted in? if the measure of touch would be heat, light, heartbeat and time, can we belong to more than one place, person, friend, lover, color, gender and generation at the same time? In swim\او, ghostly creatures are most welcome. Network of Time-images, pixelated light beams, voices of the past(just one second ago) and any presence that can exist in some form of interaction with the space can contribute to this research. To swim\او is to be a ghost, as it is in the cartoons, a piece of fabric with nothing underneath if it’s to be looked underneath. To swim\او is to meet the other, to almost touch, to flirt through the surfaces and colors.

Can you elaborate on the learning and knowledge you have gained and shared throughout this experience?

We are using video projections to create a space for our collaborators to have an avatar body that represent their presence. These avatars are combinations of live video and sound footage, sent through the cables all the way under the oceans to arrive in the form of light and sound in our space. We wanted to catch those light beams before they arrive to the walls. How to capture those live glitchy images? Different textures create different levels of transparency not only because of the thickness of the material but also because of the arrangement of their surface and how they reflect the light that pass through them. Also how these surfaces are formed in the space and what kind of corners and depth do they create through their shapes. The possibility of having multiple presence with different opacity brings a great responsibility for the ones that their bodies are going through complex sets of apparatus (be it cameras and satellites and screens or visa applications, airplanes and border control) and for the gazes that are welcoming them. In another word image making is not a process that can be looked at seperated from all the apparatus involved in it including the eye of the observer. Finding a hosting body ( Gallery space) as the place that attracts certain gaze and desires to watch a performance or a dance as such, took most of our time in this residency. The space and its stories can dominate and overshadow the whole experience that they are hosting in\on them. The circumstantial method of management which is quite common among artist-run spaces in Tehran, demands a huge trust from the artist towards the venue. And as performance and dance specifically has not been produced enough in these spaces everything becomes a matter of speculation. The question for us was how to create that trust in such a short time. What creates a space became a crucial question in this trip. The architecture and scenery also the road that take you there, the network of people who are running it as well as the people who had temporarily occupied that space would all play a role. In another word for whom does this space exist and how each person relate/d to it, what stories have lived through it and what stories are being formed now and who were the storytellers and to whom and from where were/are they telling them, it all affects the hosting possibility of a space.

Please indicate a link to your current work (website/facebook page)

swim\او part 1:
swim\او part 2:

Roberto Cimetta Fund

c/o ONDA
13 bis rue Henri Monnier
75009 Paris - France


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