Day 162: A sense of humour about Afghanistan

Aman Mojadidi came to Afghanistan to fight with 50 rebels in the battle for Jalalabad as a 19 year old vegetarian surfer from Jacksonville, Florida. He had been exposed to the war for many years through his heritage; ‘Afghan by blood, redneck by grace of God’. Mojadidi calls this his geography of self.
At the time of this talk he had been working in Afghanistan as an artist for over nine years. His highly politicised art disturbs identity, challenges authority and exposes hypocrisy. Here he talks about some of his past and future projects.
He spent a day in the life of a Jihadist gangster, who eventually ran for parliament to expose the Mafiosi. Through a work called ‘payback’ , where he set up a fake checkpoint on the streets of Kabul and stopped cars, he examined police corruption. Instead of asking them for a bribe he offered them money and apologised on behalf of the Kabul police department. He also did a line of pictures of fashion inspired by the war and expat life in Afghanistan.
Because he lives in Kabul, these things could get him thrown in, but Mojadidi explains he does them because his geography of self mandates it. That is his burden .


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