PRINT October 2014


“Unedited History: Iran 1960–2014”

View of “Unedited History: Iran 1960–2014,” 2014, Musée d’Art Moderne de la Ville de Paris, 2014.

IN ONE OF THE CORNERS of “Unedited History: Iran 1960–2014,” a sprawling exhibition that opened this past May at the Musée d’Art Moderne de la Ville de Paris, an installation of five screens flickered. At its center was a 1973 film called Mogholha (The Mongols), directed by Parviz Kimiavi, which recounts the story of a fictional young director who rounds up a band of Turkoman tribesmen to play Mongols in a surreal retelling of the history of cinema. In one of the film’s more unforgettable scenes—and there are a few—the robed Turkomans in Mongol drag march through a harsh desert climate with antennae in hand, reciting a litany of names of technological gadgets en route: microwave, monitor, oscilloscope, and so on. The recitation makes for wonderful, absurd poetry, and as the director draws unsubtle but hilarious parallels between the traumatic thirteenth-century Mongol

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