Laurence Rasti

Laurence Rasti

Switzerland, born in 1990

Iranian by both her parents, Laurence Rasti grew up in Switzerland, resulting in a cultural hybridization that very early on spurred her to explore the often paradoxical concepts of identity embedded in the two cultures in an effort to confront questions of power and sex and the border between masculine and feminine. Whereas more and more Western countries authorise marriage between people of the same sex, in Iran homosexuality is still punishable by death. Since it is considered pathological, transsexuality remains the only practice tolerated by law, and as such it has become the sole option for citizens who choose to stay. The majority of such young people, however, opt to leave their homeland and flee to countries where they can live their sexuality free of oppression. Profoundly immersive, Rasti’s work led her to Denizli, a small town in Turkey through which transit hundreds of Iranian homosexual refugees waiting for a permit to travel to a land of refuge where they will be able to regain their lost freedom. In a context in which anonymity remains the safest option, the series of photographs Il n’y a pas d’homosexuels en Iran [There are no homosexuals in Iran] questions fragile concepts such as identity and gender, and endeavours to bestow a face on young people temporarily robbed of their own.


ECAL — University of Art and Design, Lausanne, Switzerland, 2011 – 2014
CFPAA — Professional Training Center in Applied Arts, Geneva, Switzerland, 2005 – 2009



Laurence Rasti, from the series Il n’y a pas d’homosexuels en Iran, 2014
Inkjet prints
55 x 44 cm
© Laurence Rasti / ECAL

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