Laurence Rasti – There are No Homosexuals in Iran
September 24, 2007 at Columbia University, former Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad said, “In Iran, we do not have homosexuals like in your country. »
While today some Occidental countries accept gays and lesbians marriages, in Iran, homosexuality is still punishable by death. This sanction prohibits homosexuals to live their sexuality. Their only options are to choose transsexuality, practice tolerated by law but considered as pathological or to flee.
In Denizli, a small town in Turkey, hundreds of gay refugees Iranian transit: they put their lives on pause waiting to join one day, a host country where they can freely live their sexualities. In this context of uncertainty where anonymity is the best protection, this work questions the fragile identity and gender concepts. It tries to give back to those people a face that their country has temporarily stolen.
Laurence Rasti’s photographs question the notion of identity and codes of beauty. Born to Iranian parents, she grew up in Switzerland where she studied photography and received her Bachelor’s Degree at the ECAL (Ecole cantonale d’art de Lausanne) in 2014.
The cultural hybridisation of her Iranian roots mixed with her Swiss upbringing has caused her to question the habits and codes defined by these two cultures in an attempt to understand the power of gender in our societies. Laurence Rasti’s work has been exhibited in various collective exhibitions.