591 Exhibition - Aida Chehrehgosha

To Mom, Dad and my two Brothers

My dad was a fighter pilot in Iran. He grew up in the countryside in the Turkish area. His mother committed suicide when he was young, and his step-mother raised him with a hard and heavy hand. Against his will, he was sent to military school in Tehran, far from his parents, for many years.

Hardship and solitude has been spread throughout his life with a thick brush. He smiles rarely – he takes himself very seriously.
My mother married my father at the age of 15 and got pregnant when she was 16. She was quickly forced to adjust to adulthood. In retrospect, one can easily see that the relationship would not be a healthy one.

My dad abused my mom for many years, both physically and mentally, both with us children there and away. He cheated on her countless times, and she took it out her frustration on us.
My childhood was filled with abuse and constant fear. I understood nothing until I grew old enough to perceive how poorly my parents treated one another.

My anger was so strong that on many occasions I imagined my father dead. The anger was the same towards my mother, most often when she hit me through her own frustration. I hated them so very much. But this was a complex anger. I loved them simultaneously.

When I photographed them for the first time, I wanted to photograph this hatred. For six years, I have tried to come to terms with this feeling, and recently took it to a new level. I wanted to challenge myself, my feelings and our relationship by staging their deaths, just as I had imagined when I was younger. I had wanted to kill them, and had felt that they deserved to die. At the same time, I was facing up to my fear of losing them.
Total opposite feelings.

The eternal, strong hatred and the bond from all that we mean to each other. I constantly return to the ambivalence. I feel guilt because I think such thoughts about my own parents. Despite this, or perhaps because of it, I continue to photograph them.
- Photos and text © Aida Chehrehgosha

Aida Chehrehgosha
Born(year): 1980 in Tehran, Iran
Lives in: Stockholm, Sweden
Coming, planned exhibition: Marie Laveau this summer
Inspiration (photographers): Many photographers but right now Gregory Crewdson
Inspiration (other): The human stupidity and the simplity of the humans (Den mänskliga dumheten och det enkla hos oss)

Homepage/contact: www.aidafotograf.se

Maria Patomella about her selection:
Aidas series is a construction of subjective memories, where she deals with a theme that is taboo. She is not using any filter in doing it - which I find groundbreaking and innovative. The subjective does not show in rigid poses on the contrary - it produces a feeling of meeting a family seeking for reconciliation. Aida opens the way for the new Swedish photography.
- Maria Patomella (guest curator)


This online exhibition is a "From Wall to Web"
The exhibition was held at Konstfack (University College of Arts, Crafts and Design) in Stockholm from April 16 - April 26, 2009. It was Aida´s master degree exhibition curated by Anna Eriksson. I went to see the exhibition and to have a talk with Aida. More about that ahead on 591. - Mr Urbano


Mikael said…
Amazing work that really touches inside of me, they way its told make it surreal but in the same time much real. Truly something I will get back to many times to see and most of all to feel, coz that´s what this excellent work does, it feels beneath the skin.
Many Thank´s for showing us this great refreshing work!
Rhonda Boocock said…
truly memorable photographs, haunting...
Darren said…
Stark, vibrant...I'm glad that to have seen these!
Vedres Ági said…
Story telling, hurts, but I dream.
Estefanía said…
A dream, an nightmare or a surreal dream? Don't know but it does make you think. Or just Reality.