January 2011, word got out that the acclaimed Iranian-maker Jafar Panahi was sentenced to six years in prison, after being convicted on charges of working against the Iranian system. Jafar Panahi, known for feature films The Circle (2000) and Offside (2006), is now banned from making films, going abroad and talking to the media for 20 years.
Fellow Iranian film-maker Mahommed Rasulov, who was working on a film with Panahi, also got a six year sentence based on similar charges. At the time of the arrest, in march 2010, together they were planning a picture about the 2009 presidential election in Iran.
Isabella Rossellini reads open letter from Panahi at Berlin International Film Festival 2011 (via: BerlinaleWeb)
Because of his frequent visits to the International Film Festival Rotterdam, i had the opportunity to meet and portray Mr. Panahi in person. With those occasions in mind, it is very hard to acknowledge that artists are still silenced nowadays. Especially someone with the kind and gentle nature like Mr. Panahi.
I set up a special gallery and if you are publishing on Jafar Panahi’s cause, please send an inquiry for imagery.