Shirin Neshat presents her trilogy that tells the dream world of Iranian women


The PRAC Center for Contemporary Art will present Shirin Neshat’s new exhibition project from 3 October 2021: a trilogy of short films that narrates the dream world of Iranian women.

From 3 October 2021 to 9 January 2022 the PRAC Center for Contemporary Art in Ponzano Romano presents the new exhibition project conceived by the Iranian artist Shirin Neshat from the titleo Dreamers trilogy: lllusions & Mirrors, Sarah, Roja, curated by Graziano Menolascina and Annina Nosei and with the support of the Gladstone Gallery of New York and Brussels for the spaces of the Chiesetta Santa Maria ad Nives in the heart of the medieval village of Ponzano Romano.

Dreamers is a video work composed by three short films that narrate the dream world of Iranian women, in stark contrast to the harsh reality of their culture. They are works that refer to the experience of the artist herself as a woman outside the box. The characters and their dream narratives are Shirin Neshat’s projections, in which she reflects her dreams and nightmares, exploring the anxieties at the root of the migrant and refugee’s cross-cultural experience, as a growing element of the population of the contemporary world. The artist is inspired by Man Ray when he uses a glass plate in front of the camera lens to distort the image, a technique Neshat uses in Illusions & Mirrors to indicate the deformed and indistinct dream space, thus altering the image of the real world.

Illusions & Mirrors (2013), the first video in the series, features the actress Natalie Portman. The latter is guided by a distant blurred figure on the dreamlike archetype of the beach towards a ruined stately home. Neshat forgoes spoken language and uses visual effects to create a surreal atmosphere.

Sarah (2016), the second video in the series, stars Sarah, played by the Iranian-born artist Sara Issakharian. The work is set in a dense forest and the short film is composed of a succession of non-linear scenes, in which changes in the camera perspective create a disorienting feeling of a recurring dream.

The latest video in the series, Roja (2016) presents a narrative more explicitly focused on Iran and Neshat’s dreams. Is Roja that Sarah they have no actors; writer Roja Heydarpour is herself a first generation Iranian immigrant to America. As such, both works hark back to Neshat’s biography. Particularly Roja it can be read as the unconscious trying to reconcile its identity; its relationship with American culture and its identification with a country of origin that no longer exists.

Through these three video installations, Shirin Neshat intends to recreate an unstable and fascinating constellation of the dream space, inviting the public to travel with her through an inner life to a destination defined by uncertainty.

For info and reservations: (reservations required)

Hours: Tuesday to Sunday from 11 to 13 and from 16 to 19.

Image: Shirin Neshat, Roja. Courtesy the artist and Gladstone Gallery

Information on the exhibition

Shirin Neshat presents her trilogy which tells the dream world of Iranian women
Shirin Neshat presents her trilogy that tells the dream world of Iranian women

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