Life goes on in Tehran
Life Goes on in Tehran is a timeless video work. Naghshbandi documents a public swimming pool underwater in the Iranian capital. Only the bathing men’s legs are pictured. The way the bodies move and come together echoes people’s movements in the city. In Tehran, a hammam, or bathhouse, has the same social significance as a Dutch village square or café. In fact, ‘walking’ serves as a leitmotif in almost all the videos featured in Street View.
Similar to Google Street View, there are no faces in the video. For Google, this omission is a privacy issue, whereas in this video, the anonymity is politically and socially charged. Social status is not visible in a swimsuit. The skimpy clothing has a levelling effect – there is no hidden agenda – making this public space a safe space.