Articite Inc.’s BIPOC artist-in-residence this month is Tina Rouhandeh
Josiah Sinanan · CBC News
Art enthusiasts in Windsor, Ont, have a chance to see a forgotten form of Persian calligraphy put together in real-time by a local artist who wants the story of her people in Iran to be
Tina Rouhandeh, who lives in the city is the artist-in-residence at Artcite, will be creating a woven textile project using the ancient Iranian scribing practice of Mastar.
She is calling the project “Inquiry about Forgotten Birds,” as she says it is about people of the Baha’i faith who are being silenced in Iran.
“I started this discussion about three years ago. Every piece has a different subject, and this collection is about the violation of human rights in Iran, especially with the Baha’i community in Iran. [They] are routinely detained and imprisoned. I’m trying to tell the world about my country and what’s happening in my homeland,” Rouhandeh said in an interview on CBC Radio’s Afternoon Drive.
The federal government and some Canadians have spoken out against evictions and discrimination, but the government — which doesn’t have diplomatic relations with Iran — has taken no substantive actions.
Rouhandeh, who is Baha’i, explains that her art form was passed down from her grandmother. She say she hand stitches, weaves and uses calligraphy to make the tableau that will be a record of the persecution she sees.
The Baha’i faith originated in Iran, however the government in that country does not recognize it and has confiscated land and arrested the faithful.
“I chose textile to combine with calligraphy as a universal language. If people can connect with my work, I can tell them my story. People will be able to see how I start this project, how I weave the textile and my process.”
Rouhandeh hopes her art will to use her art to speak for the persecuted, and says she has plans for future projects, including a series dedicated to those buried in mass graves for their beliefs following the Revolution.
Rouhandeh will be at Artcite Inc. Monday to Thursday from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. until March 2, where she will be actively working on the project.