art of resistance, Iraq

Childhood wishes from Iraq.

Jamal Penjweny is an Iraqi Kurdish photographer and a filmmaker with a unique sense  for the inner child in himself and – in all of us. As he describes it:

 In my village growing up we didn’t have electricty so when I was a child I brought all the old people to my house to tell stories about life and the beautiful things in life. That is where I got all the beautiful images in my mind and all of my art comes from that. Last night I dreamt about them and my childhood. I miss them..

He is playful, a dreamer, a drifter. Adventurous soul – he just might be the one who coined never say never ages ago. I hope I will have the chance to introduce all of his wonderful work, but for today – I wish.

Artist statement:

I wish 

As children we all have dreams of becoming famous, we see Maradona play soccer or a Bruce Lee film and think that we will be stars like them when we grow up. But life gives us another way, we become something else, and we do not get a chance to live these dreams. Each of the people photographed in this series had dreams of sports stardom. The man in the mountains wanted to become a champion swimmer but he was born in a place with no swimming pools, the man with the Bruce Lee photo took karate lessons and then became a Mullah, the man with the Ferrari photo always wanted to be a racecar driver- now he has a donkey and sells gasoline. Life is not like animation, you cannot paint anything you want. I made this project to give one moment when dreams can become reality, so each person can act out their dream even if they cannot fulfill it in real life. 







557256_10150926068938157_768022756_nall images © Jamal Penjweny

Remember you dreams and follow them! And for more of Penjweny’s work – go to his official website.


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