We (the authors) are two young people in our late twenties who also happen to be graphic designers involved in social, political and cultural issues. Athena from Tehran (Iran) and Paco from Annecy (France).
While having rather distinct personalities and experiences, during our exchanges on our stories, our personal experiences, even intimate ones, we became aware of our differences and similarities. Having grown up in theoretically two very different models of society, we have learned a lot from each other and from the mentalities of our respective countries. The influence of family, tradition, religion, politics, gender and even oneself on the body but also in relation to the other are topics that we have brought together. Intimacy being the last space proper to oneself, the last physical possession, how one is, and how one sees the other through our experiences, our heritage, our education, our life... ?
From these exchanges came the desire to know more about it and we decided to extend our questions to other individuals living in Iran and France.
Sex, desires, feelings, attractions, ons, flirting, couple, intimacy, marriage, fantasies, break-up, booty call, pleasure...
We're not going to pretend, this is love we're talking about. Not necessarily the one with a big L, nor necessarily singular, but that is what we are going to discuss here.
About thirty people answered a questionnaire on the subject and honoured us with being as open and honest as possible. We are extremely grateful to them for this, because we are aware of the effort that this may have required. Their anonymity is not only preserved for personal purposes, but also to leave representations and identifications open.
Although collected as a form of question/answer, it should not, of course, be seen as something definitive on the subject, only and surely varied opinions, perceptions, experiences and feelings. It is the specificity of each person, through a form of collective exchange, a space that is this book, that we tried to transmit.
This project has no quantitative or comparative purpose, but is rather an introspection of the intimacy of people with different horizons, in the broadest sense of the term. The aspiration is to exchange personal and "poetic" views (to the general definition of building new forms of expression), on intimate relationships and why not remove some masks...
Once again, we thank the people who participated in this project for their time, honesty and perhaps courage for sharing their words with everyone.
gestus — communication visuelle & relations sociales et solidaires