Under the Black Stone (2022)

Sang-e Siah (translated as “Black Stone”) is one of the oldest neighborhoods in Shiraz, Iran. In the past, Sang-e Siah was the place of residence of many elders and trustees. This neighborhood, with its narrow streets and about two-hundred-year-old architecture is nowadays an interesting place for local visitors as well as tourists from all over the world. Many of the old houses have been converted into hotels and guesthouses recently. However, under the skin of this beautiful and precious treasure lies another reality.

Due to the expansion of the city of Shiraz and its transformation into a metropolis, Sang-e Siah has become a neighborhood for the poor people and illegal immigrants. One of the deep-rooted problems is the presence of drug addicts and homeless people who are scattered in every corner of this historical neighborhood. The reason for the presence and settlement of drug addicts and homelessness here is not only the cheap houses and low rental prices, but also the presence of empty and old ruin houses which are abandoned for a long time.

Holes in the walls of the houses can be seen everywhere and they are created for drug trading and breaking into abandoned houses in order to consume drugs. All the old schools in Sag-e Siah, that now should host the poor children living there, have been closed and become a safe place for drug addicts, traffickers and prostitutes. Children see all kinds of crime while playing with each other every day and have lost their innocence. Some of these children are also addicted to drugs and their single addicted Mothers are selling themselves to afford the daily Drug and also the life.