©Niki Koohpaima
Niki Koohpaima's collages are based on photographs she takes of beautiful boys and girls in Iran. Just as she is a product of both Iran and the United States, the images also seem heavily influenced by both countries. 

The collages give a nod to magazine covers of teen heart throbs, though the cover-boys and girls in these instance are all Iranian. The flavor of kitsch also has a Persian flare and the models manage to avoid feeling like characters. 

In discussing her work, Koohpaima states, "I photographed the youth (of Iran) and tried to convey to the western world how similar  we all are with our basic needs  for freedom and survival zest. I wanted to humanize Iranians since the western media was saturated with so much bad press about Iran. I wanted to show the other side, the beauty of Iranians and the beauty of the culture and richness of Iranian history.
My subjects are celebrated as icons or as heart throbs that appeal to both  men and woman. They are obviously beautiful in an old fashioned Hollywood manner.
...I am celebrating the youth of Iran without gearing towards any particular group. They are for people to enjoy, I don't decide who appreciates my art."
©Niki Koohpaima

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