One year ago, the brutal killing of Mahsa Amini sparked the uprising of a new feminist revolution across Iran. Atefe Moeini (she/they) is a researcher, photographer, video and visual artist based in Iran. She documented the protests, photographing protest graffiti in Tehran sprayed during clashes with the authorities. 

This article was first published in print in Journal 002 and released in December 2022.

On 13 September 2022, Mahsa (Jina) Amini was on a short trip to Tehran with her family when she was arrested by the so-called ‘morality police’.

The reason was not wearing her hijab in accordance with the Islamic regime’s rules.

Authorities beat her to the point that she went into a coma.

After three days she was gone.

Amini’s brutal death caused anger among many Iranians.

The day after her funeral people gathered to show solidarity to her family.

Women removed their veils and waved them in the air, chanting:

“Woman, Life, Freedom!”

“Killed because of hijab, how much more humiliation?”

“Death to the dictator!”

Zan Zendegi Azadi: ‘Women, Life, Freedom’

The regime’s security forces have been using different means to oppress protesters: shooting at people, using tear gas and restricting access to the Internet to prevent the circulation of the news.

Hundreds have been killed and thousands have been arrested according to human rights groups.

Yet, the protests are still going on.

After 43 years of oppression and violence against women, people demand the downfall of the regime, chanting:

“One solution, Revolution.”

‘Mahsa Amini’

What is going on in Iran right now is absolutely historical in terms of fighting for women’s rights and freedom. Many are referring to it as a feminist revolution.

During the past month I’ve been trying to document it in my own way by photographing slogans written on the walls in Tehran and friends protesting in my studio.

‘We don’t die’
‘Mahsa Amini’

We are living in the spirit of the words written on Jina’s tombstone:

“Beloved Jina (Mahsa), you will not die. Your name will become a symbol.”

I end my writing with the most inspiring slogan of our revolution:

“Zan, Zendegi, Azadi”

Woman, Life, Freedom.

Jin Jian Azadi: ‘Women, Life, Freedom’

This article was first published in print in Journal 002 and released in December 2022.

Atefe’s recent series ‘Six windows and a balcony’ showcases a personal collection of images captured during the protests from a more intimate perspective.

Inspired Flight

Find out more about Atefe and other cultural practitioners supported by the Prince Claus Fund Seed Awards at

Discover artists dedicated to addressing societal themes and empowering their communities through the Inspired Flight series.

Follow Atefe: @atefemoein


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