Hossein Fatemi

(Iranian, b. 1980; resides in Chicago, IL)

Chicago-based photographer Hossein Fatemi has traveled extensively throughout the Middle East, South Asia, and East Africa, covering global social issues and current affairs for numerous publications. His series An Iranian Journey documents the daily life of Iranian youth in his native country, revealing a pronounced divergence between the Islamic government’s vision of society and the lived realities of its secular majority of citizens. What emerges is an altogether different picture of a country that has been demonized, sanctioned, and isolated for over thirty years by the West. Daily, millions of young people engage in activities that are officially illegal in the Islamic Republic, shrugging off the paternalistic laws of the Mullahs. For over 15 years, Fatemi has documented the complexities of contemporary Iranian society from the inside, photographing hundreds of individuals who allow him into their private lives, where religious legislation and custom hold little sway.

Hossein Fatemi began his career in photojournalism in 1997. Since then, his work has been published widely in the Sunday Times Magazine, Newsweek, Time, Paris Match, VSD magazine, NEON magazine, Foreign Policy, the New York Times, National Geographic, the Guardian, and the Washington Post. Fatemi has received awards from Pictures of the Year International (2014), Lens Culture France (2014), and UNICEF (2012), and has exhibited his work internationally in Belgium, Australia, Germany, France, Russia, China, and the United States.