Confined bodies, lights, and looks... In the “Correction and Rehabilitation Center” series, Sasan Moayyedi has documented his subjects in a way that their total “confinement” attracts the viewer. Some juvenile delinquents imprisoned in this temporary prison to undergo “punishment” due to committing a “crime”. Does punishment regard a certain age? No photographic image, for sure, is able to explain the minds, yet Moayyedi’s photos place the bodies as medium regardless of the occurred sin or crime.///
The bodies of some adolescents that their presence in the mentioned place and specific geographical context turn into a medium for interpreting the self from the standpoint of the viewer beside its usual pictorial function. We are watching them while they try hard to “highlight” themselves among the lights, shadows, enclosed rooms, next to a hall, or even among the others. At first glance, they all look like each other. A similarity imposed by power to make them identical. Yet Moayyedi has succeeded in making these bodies identifiable by designing light for each frame and that is the very exact light that has bestowed life to the bodies. It is as if “light has come in” and under the refuge of these diverse lights we face a “human” who has achieved to be recorded and to display him/her self. The third part of this trinity are “the looks”. The photographer’s subjects are all “looking” at something, somewhere, or at an image. Looking is an act which suggests being alive and rising among the dead. The gloomy atmosphere of the place with the dominant presence of walls, ceilings, and fences, in addition to the severe attempt for making these adolescents identical, are broken by lights, looks, and the embodiment of the subjects. The photographer is emancipated in this way. Imprisonment has no synonym, but the apertures created by looks and environmental lights are the souls destined to be suppressed; to be castrated, punished and “corrected” because of committing crimes. Moayyedi has excavated the very same soul out of the dominant mass of gloom through his trinity and has made it possible for “light to come in”.
Mehdi Yazdani Khorram