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Iran Diary: 1971– 2002

Abbas's thirty-year photographic diary documents the shifting political and cultural landscape of his homeland of Iran

Abbas

Abbas | Iran Diary: 1971– 2002 Jaleh (left) who runs one of the most fashionable beauty saloons of the capital, welcomes a client with a kiss under the gaze of Askar, employed for menial jobs. Tehran, Iran. 1977. © Abbas | Magnum Photos
Abbas | Iran Diary: 1971– 2002 At a pro Shah demonstration at the Amjadiyeh Stadium, a supporter puts a banknote with the Shah's portrait to her eye as a sign of allegiance. Tehran, Iran. February, 1979. © Abbas | Magnum Photos
Abbas | Iran Diary: 1971– 2002 Tehran, Iran. 1979.

Armed militants outside the United States Embassy, where diplomats are held hostages. © Abbas | Magnum Photos
Abbas | Iran Diary: 1971– 2002 A rioter brandishes the shoes of a dead comrade, killed by Army gunfire. The soldier argues that it was not his unit which opened fire. Tehran, Iran. 1978. © Abbas | Magnum Photos
Abbas | Iran Diary: 1971– 2002 After a demonstration at the Amjadiyeh Stadium in support of the Constitution and of Shapour Bakhtiar, who was appointed Prime Minister by the Shah before the left the country, a woman, believed to (...)
Abbas | Iran Diary: 1971– 2002 A chador clad militia woman, armed with an Uzi sub machine gun, controls a demo against Iraq. The poster reads, "Yesterday's friends, Today's enemies". Tehran, Iran. June, 1979. © Abbas | Magnum Photos
Abbas | Iran Diary: 1971– 2002 The corpse of ex-Prime Minister Amir Abbas Hoveyda lies at the morgue. He was promptly executed after sentencing by an Islamic tribunal presided over by mullah Sadegh Khalkhali , 'The Hanging Judge (...)
Abbas | Iran Diary: 1971– 2002 The body of Ayatollah Moffateh, shrouded in white, is taken to the cemetery by a large crowd of mourners. The Ayatollah, an ideologue of the Islamic regime, was killed by a terrorist. Qom, Iran. De (...)
Abbas | Iran Diary: 1971– 2002 Members of the National Front led by Karim Sanjabi ( fur hat) waiting at the airport to welcome Ayatollah Ruhullah Khomeiny returning from exile. Tehran, Iran. February 1, 1979. © Abbas | Magnum Photos
Abbas | Iran Diary: 1971– 2002 On the 40th day after his death, women from the Darvazeh Ghar neighborhood, mourn a "Martyr of the Revolution", killed accidentally by a militia friend manning a gun. Behesht Zahra cemetery, Tehra (...)
Abbas | Iran Diary: 1971– 2002 Ruhollah Khomeini leader of the Revolution. Qom, Iran. September, 1979. © Abbas | Magnum Photos
Abbas | Iran Diary: 1971– 2002 Film actress Leyla Hatami (left) with her friend, artist Bita Ghezelayagh. Both wear the veil, compulsory under the Islamic Republic. Tehran, Iran. 1997. © Abbas | Magnum Photos
Abbas | Iran Diary: 1971– 2002 Militiamen in charge of the protection of oil fields, praying. Ahwaz, Khuzestan Province, Iran. 1979. © Abbas | Magnum Photos
Abbas | Iran Diary: 1971– 2002 Woman of the Hezbollah (the party of God), which advocates a strict adherence to an islamic moral code, attend a politico-religious rally. Tehran, Iran. 1997. © Abbas | Magnum Photos
Abbas | Iran Diary: 1971– 2002 Iranian film director Abbas Kiarostami on the hills surrounding the capital, where his film 'Taste of Cherry', which was co-awarded the Golden Palm in Cannes 1997, was shot. Tehran, Iran. 1997. © Abbas | Magnum Photos
Abbas | Iran Diary: 1971– 2002 Snow. Lorestan Province, Iran. 2001. © Abbas | Magnum Photos

In his book, Iran Diary: 1971 – 2002,  Abbas structures his images around three words/series. The first is ‘Revolutions’, which shows an Iran of the Shah and the murmuring street, the cortège of ministers, and the insane stack of their cadavers at the morgue once the revolutionary spirit subsided. While ‘Exiles’ evokes the war in Iraq and the impossibility for him to return. He takes the occasion to ponder Khomeini’s confiscation of the revolution and investigates his position within this history. Lastly, ‘Returns’ describes and decrypts the Iran of today, which is surprisingly schizophrenic, where beards and chadors are wearisome flags of a cause on the glistening faces of stylish, westernized young people.