In contemporary Tajikistan, monogamous marriages are no longer meeting the needs of the male population, and polygamy is becoming increasingly popular. Migration outflows are a contributing factor. Men travel abroad to find work, stay there, and get married; meanwhile, their wives and children wait for them back home. Divorced and left without breadwinners, women are forced to remarry – usually marrying an already-married man. This is why men often hide their new marriages from society. Multiple wives living next door to one another is quite the predicament for the men. The women start competing, and their husbands end up in the position of having to choose their “one true love.” Here, two different-colored papier-mâché braids let down three floors from an apartment building window serve as a metaphor for this choice.
Khurshed Rasulzade is an artist and theater designer. He is a graduate of the M. Olimov State Art College in Dushanbe and has also studied filmmaking. Rasulzade’s practice focuses on traditional patterns like Chakan and Suzani embroidery. He has worked with the Mayakovsky Theater in Dushanbe. Rashulzade attended B’Art’s Nomadic Art Camp (2014) and was an Art Prospect resident in Chisinau in 2017.