Artists: Azadeh Akhlaghi, Gohar Dashti, Shadi Ghadirian, Babak Kazemi, Abbas Kowsari, Ali & Ramyar, Newsha Tavakolian, Sadegh Tirafkan
Curator: Fariba Farshad
Burnt Generation, an exhibition of contemporary Iranian photography, surveyed the profound impact of decades of political unrest and social upheaval on the people of Iran. The name Burnt Generation has been applied to Iranians born between 1963 and 1980. Their generation was overwhelmingly marked by the Iranian Revolution of 1979, which brought down the ruling monarchy with major social, political and economic consequences, as well as the 1980-1988 Iran-Iraq War in which many of them served. Featuring an array of approaches to photographic storytelling, Burnt Generation had three central themes: the isolation, loneliness and desolation of youth; the common threads that unite the country in spite of decades of tumult; and the personal, political and social consequences of war.
The exhibition offered a rare opportunity to move beyond cliché—an invitation to forget the stereotypical images of Iran and enter the worlds of eight highly original, intellectually engaged artists. Burnt Generation was an exhibition curated by Fariba Farshad and organized by Photo London.
The Ulrich Museum of Art exhibition was made possible by generous support from the Gridley Family Foundation, Dr. Sam and Jacque Kouri, J. Eric Engstrom and Robert Bell, Bud and Toni Gates, Sangeeta Khicha, Ron and Lee Starkel, Mickey Armstrong, the City of Wichita and Wichita State University.
Additional funding for this exhibition was provided by Humanities Kansas, a nonprofit cultural organization that connects communities with history, traditions, and ideas to strengthen civic life.
Banner: Azadeh Akhlaghi, Tehran – Marzieh Ahmadi Oskuie / 26 April 1974, 2012. Digital print on photo paper, 110 x 318 cm. Courtesy of the artist.