Speak the Wind (2015–2020)

Hoda Afshar

2-channel digital video, colour and sound
24 minutes

Speak the Wind
2-channel digital video, colour and sound; inkjet prints on photo paper
18 minutes; dimensions variable

Courtesy of the artist and Milani Gallery, Brisbane


At the intersection of conceptual, staged and documentary image-making, Hoda Afshar’s lens-based artistic practice explores the representation of gender, marginality and displacement. Remain (2018), a two-channel video installation, revolves around an offshore immigration detention centre operated by Australian border control on Manus Island in Papua New Guinea, where asylum seekers are left to languish in a stateless limbo as they await legal status. Following a group of refugees who remained on the island after the closure of the detention facility in 2017, the film juxtaposes their stories of loss, violence and abuse with the lushness of the island’s lowland tropical rainforest landscape.
Speak the Wind (2015–2020), comprised of a 2-channel video and a series of large-scale photographs, documents the cultic practice of a healer purging invisible wind currents of a patient through a ritual that many believe was transmitted via the Arab slave trade. The artist thus illuminates the Strait of Hormuz as a contact zone where the collision of cultures has given rise to hybrid traditions.