Mishandled Archive

create, disseminate, dismantle and continue 
the life of an archive.

Mishandled Archive is a cross-disciplinary project that challenges our understanding of history, personal archives and itinerancy using participatory dance, photography, social media, site-specific art, storytelling and performance.

 

The project finds its starting point in a rare archive of over 2,000 predominantly Iranian family photographs and other printed memories which I collected through extensive personal and transnational research. This DIY archive imaginatively engages with half-remembered memories of prisons, executions, love affairs, shootings, war, secret religions, illegal immigration, legal migration, deception, syphilis, Kxoxexni, Winston Churchill. I used these documents and stories as the basis for 365 public interventions (international), a studio-based performance-installation (UK, Iran), workshops (UK) and a book (UK).

Producer: Lorenza Peragine Peragine.Lorenza[at]gmail[dot]com

"Passing through archival research and modes of documentation, Fatehi Irani's nomadic performative process creates new worlds."

Professor Amelia Jones, University of Southern California

"Tara Fatehi Irani’s Mishandled Archive publication folds time and space in complex ways, creating a strange weave of collected images, near and distant lives, real and imagined pasts, Instagram posts and minimalist dance scores. In its detailed, endlessly reflexive record of a year long performance it speaks of diasporic experience, displacement and new modes of what might be called belonging.

Tim Etchells, Artist and Director of Forced Entertainment

Download Mishandled Archive info pack.

Mishandled Archive started with a yearlong series

of performances and actions in public space. Every day,

for 365 days, Tara Fatehi Irani placed copies of

her collected family photos, ID cards, final wills,

letters and other ephemera in unexpected public

places. At the site of each dispersal she performed a dance and annotated the photograph with a description of the dance and details of the site. Find out more.

Tara Fatehi - Mishandled Archive 316

Tara Fatehi - Mishandled Archive 316

Tara Fatehi - Mishandled Archive 362

Tara Fatehi - Mishandled Archive 362

Tara Fatehi - Mishandled Archive 256

Tara Fatehi - Mishandled Archive 256

A collaboration between Tara Fatehi Irani and experimental musician and sound artist Pouya Ehsaei, this performance happens within an installation made of hundred of photographs from the project. Local guest performers are invited to rehearse and perform in the piece. The audience are immersed in a world of images, sounds, stories and dances – real and imagined.

Find out more.

Tara Fatehi Irani, Mishandled Archive, Darbast Platform (2018), © Mehrdad Motejalli

Tara Fatehi Irani, Mishandled Archive, Darbast Platform (2018), © Mehrdad Motejalli

Tara Fatehi Irani, Mishandled Archive, p

Tara Fatehi Irani, Mishandled Archive, p

Tara Fatehi Irani, Mishandled Archive, performance photograph, Nuffield Theatre (Lancaster, 2020), ©

Tara Fatehi Irani, Mishandled Archive, performance photograph, Nuffield Theatre (Lancaster, 2020), ©

With multitudes of stunning photographs, dance scores, essays and stories told in hashtags, Mishandled Archive records and reflects on Tara Fatehi Irani’s intentional scattering and displacement of a family archive. Elegantly designed by David Caines, the book offers a space to reimagine what it means to create, disseminate, dismantle and continue the life of an archive. Find out more and get a copy.

Mishandled Archive Book - Front cover

Mishandled Archive Book - Front cover

Mishandled Archive Book - inside

Mishandled Archive Book - inside

designed by David Caines

Mishandled Archive book - © Tara Fatehi Irani

Mishandled Archive book - © Tara Fatehi Irani

Perform

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 © 2023 by Tara Fatehi Irani.

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Tara Fatehi - Mishandled Archive 256