Book of the Kings

"Seven Conquests of Story" is a contemporary yet personal take on Fedowsi's Shahnameh (Book of the Kings). In this body of work. there are key elements chosen from each story, visualized in a symbolic manner. I only seek attention for these stories where the new audience of contemporary art can develop a taste for the ancient Persian literature and storytelling practices.

Most heroic and love stories have a written or oral stream that has been turned into a platform of poetry based on its authors taste or knowledge. In addition to engraving the story in a body of cultural mine, the author chooses to polish the best version of that particular story in his or her compilation. Aside from the structural mold that the author creates for the story by re-designing its intertwined elements of creation, there are always people who add or subtract to the story purely because of their honest intentions. Also, it is noteworthy that because these collections of lyrical stories are balanced in complex structures, manipulating their foundation is a difficult and un-natural task. One of these collections is indeed Ferdowsi’s ‘Book of the Kings’ who has saved many of these stories within its bulk despite the years passed from their birthmark. Before the modern times and the creation of modern media, Persian tales existed for centuries underneath the skin of society by storytellers narrated in public places such as mosques, coffee-houses and gatherings. In most cases the stories were centuries older than the narrators. They were told orally or published in manuscripts and traveled through time without changing core.

 

Installation of Seven Conquests of Story

A Work by Pouya Afshar & Neda Moridpour

Slanting or inclining is defined as turning the point or twisting the meaning in literature, history and even religion. This kind of twist in fiction and storytelling has had positive and negative influences on the essence of the narrative and has given different colors and textures to its meaning.

Whenever knowledge and intellect co-piloted the process of flight for the oral storytelling through history, the destructive force of agonizing the structure has been weaker. This structure in which tiles are made and cooked from dirt into a polished piece of art work is very much similar to what an author does with his/her creation. Here, ‘tile’ is a tool for a game in which slant happens. A game within completing a puzzle gives us the experience of twisting the meaning. Despite the color and looks of the finished piece, each time a tile is removed or added to the lines, a distinctive change of meaning occurs in the collective conscious of the creator. Each word illustrated on each tile welcomes the audience to participate in this game or not. Let’s not forget that agonizing some one else’s artwork is morally not supported by this project. A valuable point of this project is the documentation of the process in which the decisions of each player in twisting, owning or even not participating will be portrayed. The goal is to depict how people react to this game. Whether they participate in the game. Whether they decide to be influential in twisting a narrated story whom journey in the seven conquests of history is noteworthy. A journey that is still on.