Tahmineh Monzavi

Tina is an independent photo story which was derived from the Grape Garden Alley series. During my photo project at the dorm, a transsexual person called Tina (birth name Yashar) attracted my attention; with the passing of time we became closer and learning more about her difficult, painful past made her character all the more fascinating. Abandoned by her family at a young age because of her unacceptable, taboo physical condition and tendencies along with the constant rejections by the society she lived in; Tina had to fend for herself and tolerate unusual hardships to make it through life. Having spent a year in jail, she quitted her drug abuse for good but could not alter her actual self; a reality that brocaded her life in many ways, alienating her from the society she belonged to. Due to her strong will and persistent character she never picked up drugs or went back to dealing it again. In an interview I had with her she said “I am ready to forgive my family and father in particular for having abandoned me but I do not know their whereabouts anymore and have no way of finding out”. In fact, despite the great suffering she had been put through by her family and many others, she was an exemplary individual of the dorm with a sad but inspiring story.