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Pahlavaan Maadar
Photo essay

By Omid Salehi/135 PHOTOS
December 27, 2001
The Iranian

This photo essay won first prize at the first annual Iranian documentary photography competition in 1997 and second prize at the Iranian Youth Cinema Society festival.

Many live in a part of Shoosh in downtown Tehran named "Ghorbatihaa". The have come from provincial towns and villages seeking work and better living conditions. But many become peddlers. They sell anything they can -- flowers, watches, newspapers, chewing gum, tea, chocolates, clothes, ir toys.

Some are street performers.

This photo essay tells the story of one of these performers: A ten-year-old boy named Bahram who calls himself "Pahlavaan Maadar" or "Mother Hero".

He lives near Shoosh Square. He takes off his shirt -- in cold or hot weather -- in the streets to entertain passers-by. He's accompanied by his brother. They spend days and nights in the streets to make enough money to feed the family.


Omid Salehi, Javad Montazeri and Peyman Hooshmandzadeh recently founded 135 PHOTOS, a photo agency in Tehran.

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