Table of Con­tents | Arti­cle doi: 10.17742/IMAGE.SA.12.1.7 | PDF

This image is neither decorative nor strictly available for simple denotative description. Our project rejects captions altogether. The spirit of this project is very much one of uncertainty and imagination. We hope that anyone with visual impairments will glean information from the written compositions.

Antic­i­pa­tion, as an action, may lead to sev­er­al out­comes. Even the very mean­ing of such a word con­cocts images of tem­po­ral con­fu­sion and cog­ni­tive dis­so­nance. A quick search on Google pro­vid­ed no relief as its def­i­n­i­tion was gen­er­al­ized to the sit­u­a­tion. My under­stand­ing of antic­i­pa­tion is relat­ed to feel­ings which can have pos­i­tive or neg­a­tive con­se­quences. Expec­ta­tion, hope, and wish­es can become entan­gled with anx­i­ety, stress, doubt­ful­ness, and conflict.

The goal of Struc­tures of Antic­i­pa­tion was to cre­ate three to five pho­to-com­po­si­tions of image and text. The pur­pose of such con­cise­ness, beyond express­ing myself as “min­i­mal­ist” or “struc­tural­ist,” was also to explore the rela­tion­ship between writ­ing and imagery, while over­com­ing artis­tic chal­lenges. My def­i­n­i­tions for min­i­mal­ism and struc­tural­ism are inter­re­lat­ed and co-depen­dent with my cul­tur­al back­ground, my feel­ings, and my artis­tic work ethic.

The con­text of my most recent work involves themes of dis­place­ment aris­ing from my per­son­al jour­ney from Iran to Cana­da. As an immi­grant artist, I want­ed to rep­re­sent my mem­o­ries, pho­to­graph­ic style, and aca­d­e­m­ic work as a con­tin­u­a­tion of my per­son­al and artis­tic development.

Through the uti­liza­tion of archival mate­r­i­al, which includ­ed visu­al and writ­ten sources, I was able to relate my mem­o­ries, feel­ings and emo­tions with the project’s goal. For instance, to visu­al­ly rep­re­sent a mem­o­ry, I employed the style of lay­er­ing which is accom­plished by super­im­pos­ing two images to cre­ate a new image. “Hope” depicts the reflec­tion inside of a library over­look­ing the Amer­i­can-Cana­di­an bridge, and the com­bi­na­tion of the two screen­shots in “Long Dis­tance Rela­tion­ship” rep­re­sents the lay­er­ing of mem­o­ries. I also used a screen­shot from social media as an inspi­ra­tion for the piece “Par­ents Are Parents.”

Mem­o­riz­ing my dad’s con­ver­sa­tion from a phone call and trans­fer­ring my sib­lings’ text mes­sages from dif­fer­ent social net­work­ing appli­ca­tions are exam­ples of inter­act­ing with mul­ti­ple sources for ref­er­enc­ing my memories.

My writ­ing tech­nique, in con­trast to my visu­al style, is based on frag­ments and dia­logue. The use of frag­ment­ed writ­ing serves a twofold pur­pose. First, it is akin to recall­ing a dream; only cer­tain aspects or frag­ments are cap­tured to explain either an event or a sequence of events.

The sec­ond pur­pose involves active imag­i­na­tion by the audi­ence or read­er to fill in the gaps left by the words. The spaces between words, sen­tences, and para­graphs act as pieces of a larg­er puz­zle being con­stant­ly shuf­fled in the quest to make sense of the expe­ri­ence. The com­bi­na­tion of my sense of humour with the bit­ter-sweet real­i­ty of my per­son­al life is also sig­nif­i­cant to me.

Through my writ­ing, the audi­ence is allowed to explore open-end­ed con­cepts by using word-play, pol­y­se­mous­ness, and ambi­gu­i­ty. For exam­ple, the words “house warm­ing” or “warm house” and “blind­ness” or “aware­ness” invite the audi­ence to choose one of the words based on their under­stand­ings of the work. With­out impos­ing on the audi­ence a par­tic­u­lar the­o­ry or con­cep­tu­al def­i­n­i­tion, read­ers are bound to imbue their thoughts and feel­ings onto the text they read.

Dia­logue, as a tool in my inter-objec­tiv­i­ty, is my most favorite tech­nique. One can­not have a mean­ing­ful dis­cus­sion with some­one else if said indi­vid­ual were to talk in soliloquies.