Maryam Tafakory

Maryam Tafakory (b. Iran) is an artist filmmaker living and working in London. Her work draws on the notion of ‘personal as political’ in a fractured narrative that involves a subtle negotiation between factual and fiction, exploring allegorical forms of visual narrative, using abstracted, symbolic and textual motifs and their on-screen representation.

Part performance, her work draws on womanhood and rites of passage, interweaving poetry, (self)-censorship and religion, combining a formal minimalist syntax and figurative mode of representation.

Her work is screened and exhibited internationally including, Rotterdam International Film Festival, Edinburgh International Film Festival, Zurich Film Festiva, Internationales KurzFilmFestival Hamburg, ICA London, British Film Institute, Jihlava International Documentary Film Festival, Barbican Centre London, Cin Lumiare Institut Francais, London Short Film Festival, ritish Animation Awards, Bloomberg New Contemporarie and BBC Three.


One experiences and records the present through bodily sensations that hold memories. The desire to remember, embeds the past involuntarily within the present.

Poem and stone interweaves performance, documentary and poetry, drawing on notions of belonging, absence and the impossibility of a return. Strolling the streets of Tehran, unfolding recollections, inscribed as it were, through a language primarily material.

Bringing the distant, the outside and the unreachable inside a studio space, the residual, the soil, dust and stains aren’t mere reconstruction of the past but an attempt to return to ritualise fragments of the forgotten and absent referencing Marcel Proust’s notion of ‘Involuntary Memory’ coined in his book ‘In search of lost time’


‘It appears we are returning to something but we are in fact creating something through that very return to it’. Slavoj Zizek


National Biennale: Derby 2016

Visual ArtsOliver WoodM