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Erased Mossadegh

This “subtractive commemoration” of the 1953 coup d'état in Iran utilizes false testimony as a medium to explore the nature of historical memory. Ousted Premier Mohammed Mossadegh, played by Nasser Rahmaninejad, alternately delivers three inconsistent accounts of the coup drawn directly from the language of the Shah’s memoirs, the CIA planning documents for the coup, and a celebrated leftist’s harangue against U.S. imperialism. Not a single word of Mossadegh’s is deployed. Woven together as a single testimonial given by the wandering protagonist, the texts decisively fail to add up. In light of today’s historical revisionism, the failure begins to reflect on the uses of testimony and documentation to cover over not only the factual record but also, more radically, the inescapably fictive dimension of historical memory.

Format: three-channel video installation with sound
Year: 2015
Duration: 10 min

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