Autodidact Newsha Tavakolian (1981, Iran) has been a photographer since the age of 16. Faced with various glass ceilings, she made a conscious decision early in her career to showcase positive portrayals of women. Searching for a new vocabulary with which to express and explore her ideas, she turned away from traditional journalism to experiment with fine arts more explicitly. For the series
Listen, she portrayed six Iranian professional female singers who are not allowed to sing solo, perform in public or produce CDs due to the country’s strict Islamic laws. As a statement, Tavakolian turned her portraits into CD covers for these singers, but left the cases empty. The project also includes a video installation.