Ala Mohseni

Ala Mohseni

Studio U1

Medium: Film & Performance

Born in Tehran, Iran, Ala Mohseni began pursuing his interest in theater in 1991, while studying physics. He then completed a course in filmmaking at the IYCS (Iranian Youth Cinema Society). In 2004, he directed “The Life”, a documentary on one of the pioneers of Iranian cinema, Nosrat Karimi. This film has been prohibited from screening in Iran. He later attended a masterclass workshop by the legendary Iranian director Abbas Kiarostami, then a BBC documentary workshop.

Ala Mohseni’s 2008 documentary “My City Pizza”, about the massive popularity of pizza in the Iranian capital Tehran, was praised for its comedy and awarded in festivals worldwide. The IDFA awarded Mohseni the Jan Vrijman Fund in 2009 for his project “Hidden Kisses” – a film he was unable to complete because of civil strife in Iran after the 2009 presidential election. Mohseni moved to California a year later and earned an MFA in Film at the California College of the Arts. His latest films are “Kiosk, A Generation Destroyed By Madness”, “My Stealthy Freedom”, "Metamorphosis, Iranian Style", “Kamran Tull”, and “Bahram Beyzaie” for Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty (Radio Farda).

Artist Website



Recent Works


REDminus2 performance

REDminus2 performance 2

While in residency at Agapolis + Building180, Ala produced “Red minus 2”, an experimental multimedia performance staging based on the life of Reza Abdoh, an avant-garde Iranian playwright and director, who died of AIDS in 1995 at the age of 32. The film project is inspired by Iranian traditional theater genres that include Takht-e Hozi, Zoorkhaneh rituals, and Ta’zieh, with a drop of Ala’s personal touch, and is the first stage in the larger vision for an experimental feature-length film about Abdoh.