In Iran, where protesters have been harshly repressed and even reportedly tortured for demanding protection for the dying Lake Urmia, artists are also making bold statements against other types of environmental degradation, Tafline Laylin wrote recently for the Mideast environmental news site Green Prophet.
Iranian Artists Tackle Deforestation, Pollution
In the city of Kerman, a group of Iranian artists used chunks of wood to block a city street as a way of protesting against deforestation. In smoggy Tehran, one of the world's most polluted cities, other artists have put together the Tehran Monoxide Project, an exhibit of mixed-media works at a local school reflecting their concern about children's health in a place where "the city and its pollution are inseparable."
Iraqi Artists Focus On Water
The six Iraqi artists from two different generations chosen for the country's Venice Biennale pavilion have meanwhile focused on something they see as more of an emergency situation than civil war or terrorism: lack of water. Azad Nanakeli's haunting installation "AU," for example, reflects the artist's "return[ing] to his Kurdish home Erbil to find all of the wells contaminated with waste and chemicals," Laylin wrote in a separate Green Prophet piece.