In the present era, extensive efforts are being made at a global level to homogenize humans, which have been largely successful. To the extent that today we witness that individuals, instead of their unique identities, only have minor differences in appearance and insignificant details, and in general, they have turned into incomplete and dehumanized beings.

Although the final constructed and identical image is appealing to governments and powers, it leads to the loss of personality and individuality of humans and turns them into identical beings. Photocracy claims transparency and the rule of light, and it acknowledges that it leaves no room for concealment and monitors and measures everything. However, this claim is a big lie because its measurements are based on laboratory experiments and it distorts humans from their natural form, each of whom is unique in the world and incomparable with unique and immeasurable qualities.

By turning humans into countable beings, photocracy ignores their unique and individual identity and trivializes human qualities.

In 2011 and 2012, these concerns occupied the author’s mind, which eventually led to the performance of an art event. In this event, before entering the Shirin Gallery space in Tehran, the audience had to scan their faces completely using a scanner. However, before scanning, they were required to write their name and occupation in their mother tongue on the scanner. This act was an allusion to the administrative bureaucracy in which individuals are required to identify themselves by stating their name and occupation, as if the human identity is summarized in their name and occupation and not in their essence and being.

After scanning the individuals in this event, a final image of them was created in an inverted and ridiculous way with their name on it. Then these images were installed on the gallery wall and finally formed a single unit. This overall image was colorful but incomprehensible from a distance, but as you approached it, the incomplete and distorted faces of the individuals were visible next to each other.

In total, about 170 faces were scanned in this event. The remarkable point was that despite the individuals’ efforts to show their unique and individual identity, after the images were placed next to each other, they all realized the striking similarities between their efforts and those of others in order to show themselves as unique. This was shocking because it confronted the audience with the reality that in photocracy, even in the effort to be unique, you are forced to follow predetermined rules and ultimately deceive yourself that you are different, while you are away from your real identity and behave like others.


About this project