27th Ji.hlava International Documentary Film Festival

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director: Bassim Al Shaker
original title: محل حلاقة
country: Iraq, Germany, United States
year: 2022
running time: 7 min.


Bassim Al-Shaker was 19 years old when a group of Mahdi militia members visited his barbershop in 2007. They wanted a new haircut. When they saw his unfinished painting of Venus, however, they were so offended by the nude figure that they beat the young man, forcibly cut his hair, and dragged him out into the street. The film reconstructs the shocking incident through personal testimony and his own drawings.

“This fear still lives inside of me, even as I share this film with you.”


Bassim Al-Shaker (* 1986) first worked as a barber. At the same time, he took up painting, which nearly cost him his life in his native Iraq. He emigrated to Chicago, where he earned his MFA. He currently exhibits his works at leading international shows.

more about film

director: Bassim Al Shaker
producer: Bassim Al Shaker, Rijin Sahakian
script: Bassim Al Shaker
editing: Sean Deckert
music: Sadiq Jaafar
Ministerstvo kultury
Fond kinematografie
Město Jihlava
Kraj Vysočina
Česká televize
Český rozhlas
Český rozhlas
Kudy z nudy