“Now I’ll have silence
And I thought,
the only freedom from pain
is to be free from the world. “
The opening lines of Shirin Neshat’s beautiful debut film “Women Without Men” ( Zanan-e Bedun-e Mardan) take you right into a story of the struggle for change for four women and a country. With a mélange of poetry, story-telling, magic realism, and arresting cinematography, this film has reached the top of my list of favorites. The Iranian-born artist won the Silver Lion for Best Director at the Venice Film Festival in 2009 for this film.
I love everything about it, except the title. I would have preferred ‘Summer – 1953’.
Women Without Men releases to purchase on FEB 15th from Amazon or indiepixfilms.com and is available to rent on Netflix.
You may know Shirin for her “Women of Allah” photo series, or her trilogy of video installations. My favorite one is called ‘Turbulent‘ where she uses singing as a metaphor for freedom – the best ode for which was written by Canadian film maker Atom Egoyan. If you are familiar with Zarin, she makes an appearance in WWM as well.
Very recently Shirin modeled for designers Flora and Alexa’s label Ohne Titel, you can see the backstage video and Shirin’s thoughts on it all here.
However, it is not her new modeling gig or her penchant for interesting earrings, that gives this artist her beauty icon status…. it’s her FIERCE EYELINER.
Shirin’s commitment to that eastern, almost tribal eyeliner look is awesome. She really owns it.