top of page


Directed by:

Elahe Zivardar & Jaydn Ray Gosselin

Memories take shape, as refugee, journalist, and architect ELAHE ZIVARDAR revisits six years of brutal detention by constructing a photo-realistic 3D simulation of Australia's OFFSHORE DETENTION CENTRE – a black site built in the world's smallest island nation and least visited country. Delving into the metaphysical significance of architecture, Elahe's search for justice becomes a profound rumination on the physical dimensions of torture, trauma, and healing.

AG_CAD design 2.png
AG_Light on graffiti wall.jpg

Resettled in the United States following a controversial "refugee swap," Elahe draws from the stark testimonies of other detainees and the largest trove of never-before-seen footage from inside the detention center to expose the facility, its architecture, and the amorality of the Border-Industrial Complex that profits at the expense of refugee and migrant incarceration. She must move through her lingering trauma to imagine a new kind of place that is the antithesis of the corporate detention center – a radically utopian space of healing, which she calls "Aramsayesh Gah. "​ARCHITECT (formerly SEARCHING FOR ARAMSAYESH GAH) is a hybrid documentary exposing the cruel, secret architecture of refugee detention.

The Team

Elahe Zivardar

Co-Director & Executive Producer

Elahe Zivardar, aka Ellie Shakiba, is an Iranian artist, architect, journalist and documentary filmmaker who was imprisoned by the Australian government in Nauru from 2013 to 2019. During her detention in Nauru she was highly active in using photography and video to document the horrific treatment and conditions endured by people seeking asylum and imprisoned offshore, she also used her skills to highlight the impact of Australia’s border regime on the local population. Her footage was widely used by the Australian and international media and refugee rights campaigns pressuring Australian lawmakers to release children and their families from detention in Nauru.


Jaydn Ray Gosselin

Co-Director & Producer

Jaydn Ray Gosselin is a US-based, French-Australian filmmaker who works at the intersection of art and advocacy. He is interested in how histories, memories, and traumas are embedded in community spaces, hidden sanctuaries, and built environments. He is working on his debut feature documentary, directed with Elahe Zivardar, ARCHITECT, executive produced by Field of Vision and Rebecca Barry and Madeleine Hitherto-Miau of Media Stockade. Jaydn is currently a Co-Creation Lab Fellow at Doc Society. He was previously an Art & Impact Fellow at Doc Society; a Doc.Lab.Interact Fellow with Anagram, ScreenVic, and AIDC; and a Development Studio Fellow at the NYU Production Lab. He holds a BFA in Film & Television from New York University's Tisch School of the Arts. He resides on Lenape land in New York and was raised on Gadigal land of the Eora Nation, the traditional custodians of the place we now call Sydney.

Jaydn Ray Gosselin_Headshot 2_edited.jpg

Mehran Ghadiri

Producer & Translator

Mehran Ghadiri is an Iranian-Australian political scientist and international relations analyst who left his economic development role in Nauru after several years of witnessing the realities of Australia’s offshore border regime. He has many years of first-hand experience working in a broad range of roles directly in support of refugees resettled and living in Australia.

As well as his unique insights into the inner workings of Australia’s refugee
system and detention industry, he brings a detailed understanding of the global forces that create and manipulate refugee flows for financial and political gain. Mehran is currently authoring a detailed analysis of the political, economic and societal effects of Australia’s policies in Nauru.


Jacob Fertig


Jacob Fertig is a Queens-raised, Brooklyn-based filmmaker whose work unites documentary traditions and social action. He is the Co-Founder and Managing Director
at Denizen Studios, a production company committed to sparking civic engagement through nonfiction storytelling. He is a Senior Fellow at Humanity in Action, a Co-Creation Fellow at Doc Society, an Art & Impact Fellow at Doc Society, and a Feature Development Studio Fellow at the NYU Production Lab. He is producing the feature documentary
SEARCHING FOR ARAMSAYESH GAH with director Jaydn Ray Gosselin (co-directed by Elahe Zivardar) and the Academy Award-nominated team at Field of Vision.

Jacob holds a BFA from the NYU Tisch Kanbar Institute of Film & Television, and an MPA in Advocacy and Political Action from the NYU Wagner Graduate School of Public

Jacob Fertig_Headshot 1_edited.jpg

Charlotte Cook

Executive Producer

Charlotte Cook is a curator, writer and producer. She is the co-creator and executiveproducer of Field of Vision (Academy Award-nominees “Do Not Split”, ASCENSION,AMERICAN FACTORY). Before Field of Vision, she was the Director of Programming at HotDocs, North America’s largest documentary festival. In London, Charlotte was the Headof Film Programming at The Frontline Club. She has also worked with BBC Storyville,the Channel 4 BritDoc Foundation’s Puma Creative Catalyst Fund and the EdinburghInternational Film Festival, where she curated the strand Conflict | Reportage. In additionto her work at Field of Vision, Charlotte is currently a programmer at CPH:DOX.

Rebecca Barry.jpg

Rebecca Barry

Executive Producer

Rebecca Barry is an Australian documentary filmmaker and producer. She is the cofounder and co-director of Media Stockade. Recent productions include the featuredocumentary film I Am A Girl (nominated for 4 AACTA awards and winner of bestdocumentary film at the 2014 SPA Awards); directing three episodes of The Surgeon(Network 10); producing the critical and ratings success The Surgery Ship (SBS) whichevolved into an 8 part series with Nat Geo. She was also the producer of controversialfeature documentary The Opposition, which screened at Hot Docs, IDFA, Sydney FilmFestival and was the opening night film at HRAFF. She produced China Love which wasthe ABC Arts, Create NSW Doc Feature Fund recipient for 2018. The five part true-crimeseries Frozen Lies screened on Foxtel in 2019 and she is currently producing an 8 partdocumentary series called Back to Nature for the ABC.

Madeleine Hetherton-Miau.jpg

Madeleine Hetherton-Miau

Executive Producer

Madeleine Hetherton-Miau is an experienced and multi-awarded Australian directorand producer. Her filmmaking has taken her around the world from diamond divingin Africa to wildlife trafficking in Burma and through the remote Australian outback.She works across a wide range of programs, which have been broadcast in over60 countries across networks including ABC, BBC, Netflix, Nat Geo, Discovery and AlJazeera. In 2012 she co-founded the independent production company Media Stockadewith Rebecca Barry. Recent work includes the award-winning 8 part series ‘TheSurgery Ship’ for National Geographic Channel, the true crimes series ‘Debi MarshallInvestigates’ for FOXTEL and ‘Back to Nature’ for the ABC. Madeleine is driving MediaStockade’s expansion into formats and series, finding new ways to tell great stories.

Omid Tofighian

Research Consultant

Omid Tofighian is an award-winning lecturer, researcher and community advocate, combining philosophy with interests in citizen media, popular culture, displacement and discrimination. He is adjunct lecturer in the School of the Arts and Media, University of New South Wales; and honorary research fellow at Birkbeck Law, University of London. His publications include Myth and Philosophy in Platonic Dialogues (Palgrave 2016); translation of Behrouz Boochani’s multiaward-winning autobiographical novel No Friend but the Mountains: Writing From Manus Prison (Picador 2018); co-editor of special issues for journals Literature and Aesthetics (2011), Alphaville: Journal of Film and Screen Media (2019) and Southerly (2021); and co-translator/co-editor of Freedom, Only Freedom: The Prison Writings of Behrouz Boochani (Bloomsbury 2023).

Key Supporters & Impact Partners

  • Doctors Without Borders MSF

  • Amnesty International Australia (Au)

  • Forensic Architecture (UK)

  • Doc Society (UK, AU, US)

  • Anagram (UK)

  • Ads-Up Refugee Network (Au)

  • Garuwa and Genevieve Grieves (Au)

  • Detention Action (UK)

  • Doctors for Refugees (Au)

  • NYU Production Lab

bottom of page