If you’d told Hushidar Mortezaie back in the 90s, when he was busy cutting his teeth on the streets of New York City, that he’d one day be clothing the likes of Madonna, Beyoncé, and Brad Pitt, he’d have called you crazy. Or, maybe not. To them – and his many other devotees – he’s known simply as ‘Hushi’. Adding heavy doses of glitter and glam to traditional Iranian motifs and aesthetics, he’s cultivated a style wholly his own, and with his ancient Persian name written all over it.
To those who don’t know him, Hushi can be something of a tough cookie to crack. There can be a proclivity, perhaps, to liken him to the haughty, dusky-eyed belles sporting his over-the-top gol-o-bolboli (REORIENT readers – if you still don’t know what this means … well, what are you waiting for?) outfits; and, while he is certainly something extraordinary, he’s arguably somewhat of an antihero.
Hushidar and I initially bonded over our love for Googoosh, whom we’re both eager to see rightfully crowned as President. Somehow, his work was always secondary to me; in fact, we rarely talk about it nowadays, instead preferring to extol the virtues of Farrokh Bulsara, wrack our brains on account of the ‘haters’ (as Hushidar likes to call them), and metaphorically compare ourselves to ponies. His work and ponies aside, though, I’ll always love him above and beyond else for what he and his work have always stood for: defiant and unflinching Iranian pride. If there’s anyone who personifies REORIENT’s ‘Sex, Drugs, and Gol-o-Bolbol’ ethos, it’s doubtless Hushidar.
As Hushidar is too busy being awesome, he still doesn’t have a website I can refer you all to. This little podcast will have to do for the time being.