Join us for a panel discussion between artists Sahar Fanian, Ehsan Hazaveh, Bahman Khalili and the Iranian Solidarity Group Aotearoa, about their work in Woman, Life, Freedom and experiences as Iranian diaspora living in Aotearoa.
Light refreshments provided.
Sahar Fanian is an emerging Iranian-Canadian documentary filmmaker dedicated to highlighting social issues and sharing stories of individuals striving for positive change. Sahar has an undergraduate degree in Film Studies and a Masters in Public Health. Her first short documentary profiles Hanna, one of the key activists behind Wellington's Women Life Freedom movement. Sahar is currently working on documenting more stories of the inspiring women behind the movement as part of a larger project called Women Rising. Sahar lives in Wellington and is currently walking Te Araroa from Bluff to Cape Reinga. She plans to make a documentary about her journey on the trail.
Ehsan Hazaveh is an independent Iranian photographer based in New Zealand. He has over a decade of experience in documentary and commercial photography. Ehsan has been commissioned by leading companies and organisations for his precise attention to detail and work ethic. Since 2010, his works have been featured in high-profile publications such as The Guardian, Art New Zealand, Stuff, NZ Herald, NZ Lifestyle, and Organic NZ magazine.
Ehsan holds a PhD in Media Studies from Victoria University of Wellington and an MFA from the University of Tehran. He was the first student to pursue a practice-based PhD in Media Studies in New Zealand. He has been awarded the Wellington International Student Excellence Award in the Creativity category (2021) and the Postgraduate Research Excellence Award from Victoria University of Wellington (2019).
He has produced four major exhibitions titled My Life To Live (2019), Memento (2021), Here We Are (2022), Here and Beyond (2023), and Woman, Life, Freedom (2023). Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern officially opened My Life To Live at the New Zealand Portrait Gallery in 2019. The exhibitions challenge the stereotypical understanding of marginal groups by amplifying their voices and experiences. The exhibitions toured New Zealand to raise awareness and challenge myths about minorities.
Bahman Khalili is a progressive rock musician. He has performed at several large scale concerts in and outside Iran including in Turkey, Azerbaijan and Malaysia. Khalili moved to Aotearoa after facing various legal challenges in Iran because of the style of music he performed.
Iranian Solidarity Group Aotearoa
The Iranian Solidarity Group Aotearoa, a collective of volunteer Iranian expatriates based in Te Whanganui-a-Tara, is committed to advocating for freedom in Iran. Formed on September 19, 2022, in response to the tragic death of Jina Mahsa Amini, the group is dedicated to increasing awareness and seeking justice for crimes perpetrated by the Islamic Republic. They focus their efforts on supporting the Woman, Life, Freedom revolution in Iran.