Zeinab Shahidi Marnani’s Tricks of the Light

February 28, 2024

Photo by Sasha Wortzel.

Zeinab Shahidi Marnani’s studio on Pearl Street in Provincetown is dimly lit. In one corner sits a lounge chair with yellow pillows on it. A desk in the middle of the room is covered with clamshells painted with streaks of blue, red, and green. A book of Persian poetry lies on a side table; drawings of the moon cover many surfaces; bouquets of flowers sit in vases beside a printout of an etching of a camera obscura.

A series of shoeboxes are in one corner of the studio. The boxes are cardboard prototypes of Shahidi’s newest work. If you lift them up and gaze through the two holes cut in each box’s surface, you will observe a small white circle cut from paper inside the box. Try crossing your eyes, she suggests, or focus on the slits cut into the box, or ignore the slits and focus just on the circle.

Read the full article by Olivia Oldham in The Provincetown Independent here.

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