November 10, 2007 - NEVER BEEN TO TEHRAN - Organized by Jon Rubin and Andrea Grover
November 10, 2007

Organized by Jon Rubin and Andrea Grover

A worldwide online and offline exhibition organized by Jon Rubin and Andrea Grover
October 19 – November 16, 2007

EXHIBITION VENUES: Parkingallery, Tehran, Iran; Caravansarai, Istanbul, Turkey; San Francisco Arts Commission Gallery, San Francisco, USA; Media and Interdisciplinary Arts Center, Auckland, New Zealand; Koh-I-Noor, Copenhagen, Denmark; Mess Hall, Chicago, USA; Pittsburgh Cultural Trust (Downtown Electronic Jumbotron), Pittsburgh, USA; Embryosalon, Berlin, Germany; and on the web at

NEVER BEEN TO TEHRAN, organized by artist Jon Rubin and curator Andrea Grover, is a worldwide exhibition with 29 international participants who, for one month, are contributing photographs of what they imagine the city of Tehran to look like, to a universal photo-sharing website. The photographs are streamed to each participating exhibition venue as an evolving projected slideshow, with additional images uploaded daily throughout the exhibition.

Exhibition Description: Imagine a city that you’ve only seen in reproductions or perhaps have merely heard about. A place, like many others, that only exists for you through indirect sources–the nightly news, hearsay, literature, magazines, movies, and the Internet. Using these secondhand clues as firsthand research materials, invited worldwide participants–who have Never Been to Tehran–take photographs (from their home base) of what they imagine Tehran to look like. Anything that anyone might take a photograph of is fair game, just as long as it feels like Tehran.

As Tehran’s image is regularly depicted in the dominant media, it is a compelling challenge for the participants in this exhibition to sift through the glut of pictures and information to cull out a personally constructed version of an unfamiliar place. For viewers in Tehran, the exhibition presents a chance to witness an unusual mirroring of their globally projected image, taken from the daily lives and environs of outsiders. Collectively, the artists and viewers of Never Been to Tehran will be charting a liminal space stuck somewhere between here and there that in our contemporary existence just might be home.

“The challenge for each participant in this exhibition is to look for a common ground between their city and someone else’s–to blend fact with fiction. It’s a bit like after you read a great book. There is a period of time when the story of the book bleeds into your own life. This daydreaming, in-between state, to which the contributors to this exhibition periodically submit themselves, is an important way of looking at the after-effects of an accelerated information culture.”– Jon Rubin and Andrea Grover

Participants: Dean Baldwin, Canada; Aideen Barry, Ireland; Cedric Bomford, Canada; Otto Von Busch, Sweden and Turkey; James Charlton, New Zealand; Sara Graham, Canada; Andrea Grover, USA; Deniz Gul, Turkey; Greg Halpern and Ahndraya Parlato, USA; Levin Haegele, England; Rumana Husain, Pakistan; Jun’ichiro Ishii, France; Martin Krusche, Austria; Rosie Lynch, Germany; Francesco Nonino, Italy; Elena Perlino, Italy; Heidi Hove Pedersen, Denmark; Sal Randolph, USA; Alia Rayya, Israel/Palestinian Territories; Jon Rubin, USA; Carli and Jakob Hoffmann, Germany; Iyallola Tillieu, Belgium; Keiko Tsuji, Japan; Lee Walton, USA; Lindsey White, USA; Christian Sievers, Germany; Zoe Strauss, USA

Photo credits: Heidi Hove Pedersen, Denmark; Keiko Tsuji, Japan; Greg Halpern and Ahndraya Parlato, USA; Jon Rubin, USA; Rumana Husain, Pakistan; Elena Perlino, Italy; Iyallola Tillieu, Belgium; Otto Von Busch, Sweden and Turkey.

Contact: Andrea Grover and Jon Rubin

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