Gelareh Kiazand based between Tehran and Toronto was born in Iran in 1981, studied in Dubai then London and graduated in Toronto in 2003. Her student short films toured festivals like Toronto, Montreal, and New York. She worked in Iran’s film industry for six years post-graduation, initially working as a film photographer for Iran’s feature films and later as a Director of photography for documentaries.
This enabled her to travel across Iran to some of the countries most remote locations. She was chosen, alongside others, to have her work in the top 100 photos exhibited at the Museum of Modern Arts in Tehran as well as Arles Photo Festival in 2017.
In 2010 she moved to Afghanistan working as a Creative Director and filmmaker, directing a 13 part documentary series all across Afghanistan, from Kandahar to Badakhshan documenting health and Women’s issues. In 2013 her freelance career took further shape, working for various outlets such as:
VICE, Paramount, PBS, ARTE, CH4 UK, History Channel, Al Jazeera and independent producers spanning her work across Afghanistan, India, Turkey, Pakistan, Azerbaijan, Europe, Argentina, and Antartica.
Her TEDxTehran talk focuses on these travels and the ambition behind them. In 2016, she became one of Iran’s first female Director of Photography for a Cinematic feature film post-revolution taking her forward in setting up a production unit out of Tehran.