embossed cotton rag
21 x 28 inches
Nineteen prints speculatively map out aerial views of Qanat systems using Asgary's breath to emboss cotton rag paper. The prints touch upon power systems of labor, with references to land and body. To create these, Asgary continuously blew into plaster until set, forming a crater, and cast a mold using consumer-grade plastic melted down from water bottles, which she then intricately wrapped in layers of tarlatan and organza to create subtle variations on the paper's surface when embossed onto cotton rag paper with a hydraulic press. Asgary views the creation of these speculative maps as a process akin to a psychomagic act of breathing water over the landscape. These prints were created through her ongoing research into the water systems of Iran and through her self-training in identifying idealized locations for qanats by looking at google maps and realized while in residence at MASS MoCA with the support of an Emergency Grant from the Foundation for Contemporary Arts.
Additional images are available by request.