A Statement in Support of our Iranian Community
To Our Southern Exposure Community,
We stand in solidarity with our Iranian artist community and with the protestors in Iran who have been demonstrating against the brutal government crackdowns and the murder of 22-year-old Jina Amini at the hands of Iran’s Morality Police on September 16th. Southern Exposure has a long history of working with and showcasing Iranian artists as well as a huge Iranian diasporic community in the Bay Area, and we are all impacted by the oppression of women and attacks on personal sovereignty and freedom of education.
Artists in particular have taken active roles in the protests, both in Iran and abroad. As an arts organization, we honor the ways in which art enacts social change, and how creative expression can build community, envision new realities, and work to make the world a better, safer place. Today we want to encourage everyone in our community to amplify the voices of Iranians, Iranian artists, and protesters.
The staff and board of Southern Exposure stands with our Iranian diaspora community in this time of profound uncertainty and pain. Many of our Iranian artist community are in harm’s way or have family who are. We recognize these painful circumstances and implore all in our community to offer support however you can, be it with your voices, your art, or your wallet. Below are some suggestions from different organizations and Iranians on for how to offer support:
- Use the hashtags #JinaAmini, #MahsaAmini, and #womanlifefreedom when posting content around the protests.
- Share the stories, protest art, protest music, and poetry coming from those who are directly engaged in the revolution.
- Share well-documented strategies for feminist revolutions from other countries and communities, especially from non-Western countries.
- Contact your representatives in congress, parliament, city councils, etc., and ask them to identify and freeze assets in your country of residence that belong to Islamic Republic officials engaged in repression.
- Express through social media and any other channels you have available to you your support and encouragement.
- Attend gallery events and exhibitions showing Iranian artists.
- Keep your support focused on the Iranian people fighting for their own liberation, not on Western intervention.
- Center the voices of Kurdish, Baluchi, and other ethnic minorities, religious minorities, and LGBTQIA+ people who have long faced the government's repression and political violence and are now chief among the regime's targets.
We cannot look the other way while a government fires directly into a feminist revolution. As Western news coverage has died down in recent weeks, we ask you to continue to engage with the situation with care.
Some sources, accounts, and artists to follow; we welcome those with expertise to add additional recommendations by emailing [email protected]:
Accounts to follow and uplift: