Ma Miaeem va Miravim (We Come and Go), 2016-19, is a series of drawings which translates my first-grade English book, We Come and Go, from the Dick and Jane series into Persian-English, in which Persian words are written using the Roman alphabet. The title phrase ‘Ma Miaeem va Miravim’ is the Persian-English translation of ‘We Come and Go’. The children’s names, Dick, Jane, and Sally are replaced by Iranian names, Babak, Mina, and Leila. The colourful homogenized illustrations from the source book, We Come and Go, are reproduced in black and white with some thematic changes and translations. Several layers of dark lines are drawn obsessively using graphite pencil to cover the parts of the images that depict children playing outside in ways that contrast with how Iranian children played back then. For example, North American toys such as roller-skates and a big toy car are covered with the dark lines. On other pages, a white picket fence is replaced by a tall brick wall, and a milk van is replaced by a motorcycle, as these were more common in Iran. Working with notions of “third space” or “the space in-between” and the globalization of English, this work explores how the use of the hybrid language Persian-English affects an Iranian sense of identity in a globalized world. It investigates the socio-cultural implications of hybridity as they relate to interethnic exchange and the globalizing process of travel and translation.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Ma Miaeem va Miravim (We Come and Go), 2016-20
5″ x 8″
graphite on paper

©  Mehran Modarres-Sadeghi

 

Ma Miaeem va Miravim (We Come and Go), 2016-20
5″ x 8″
graphite on paper

©  Mehran Modarres-Sadeghi

 

Ma Miaeem va Miravim (We Come and Go), 2016-20
5″ x 8″
graphite on paper

©  Mehran Modarres-Sadeghi

 

Ma Miaeem va Miravim (We Come and Go), 2016-20
5″ x 8″
graphite on paper

©  Mehran Modarres-Sadeghi

 

Ma Miaeem va Miravim (We Come and Go), 2016-20
5″ x 8″
graphite on paper

©  Mehran Modarres-Sadeghi