Of Shifting Shadows

Gita Hashemi

2000, colour , English


Of Shifting Shadows (CD-R) is an interactive tale of four women - Bita, Mina, Goli and the Author - who experienced the 1979 Iranian Revolution and, subsequently, life in exile. Their stories unfold in 48 segments, each layered with smaller narratives inhabited by bodies and voices, using video, audio, animation and text. This is an open-ended and selective chronicle of intense lives at critical points in their individual existence, juxtaposed with archival and eyewitness accounts of the Revolution. Visually captivating and thoughtfully crafted, this work establishes a public voice for marginalized secular women who were the first target of the post-revolutionary oppression, and whose voices have been muted in the narration of history and national identity. The interactive strategy places the viewer in the position of witness and accomplice through a ritual of remembrance reenacted in each viewing to invoke a sense of responsibility. "Of Shifting Shadows variously takes shape as a political history, a life story, and a poetic reflection through its use of the medium's affinity for the non-linear movements of memory. Although a narration of the Iranian experience, the work enters a universal stage as it embraces broader themes of displacement and alienation that permeate our collective histories of social trauma." Winner of the Independent Project Award at Baddeck International New Media Festival and a highlight of the SIGGRAPH 2001 Art Gallery.m ,

Programmer, Don Sinclair; director of readings, Philip Shepherd; narrator, Veronica Hurnik; dancer, Roula Said; sound designer, Scott Kennedy; videographers, Alina Martiros, Iraj Rahmani, Goli Moradi; photographer, Mina Rastgoo; art director, Bita Javan; composer, Gary Atkins; on-line editor, David Findlay; producer, Suzie Mukherji.

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