Going up the Stairs, Documentary

52min , Iran, 2011

Akram is an illiterate 50 year old Iranian woman who became a painter unexpectedly when her young grandson asked her to work on a drawing; that simple act tapped into an explosion of powerful, primitive and colorful paintings, which she hid under the carpet from possibly disapproving eyes. She finally tells her Western educated children about her work and they arrange for her to have an exhibition in far-off Paris. The only hitch in this plan is that Akram must obtain permission from her husband – who she married when she was 8 and he was in his 30s – in order to attend. Their comfortable bickering covers up Akram’s frustrations and fears that her chance for recognition of her magical talent lays completely in the hands of this conservative and traditional Iranian man. An inspiring resource for courses on contemporary Muslim and Islamic studies, women’s studies, art and more.


Premiered in IDFA 2011

Nominated for Best Mid-Length documentary in IDFA 2011

Best Female Directed Documentary, AFJWSheffield doc/fest 2012

Special Jury Award, EIDF 2012, South Korea