Each year, the cultural and education communities come together to celebrate the transformative power of the arts in education to transform our communities, schools, teaching, and learning. As our young people and educators return to school, we take time to reflect on the role of arts education in our lives and how it has contributed to making us the people we are today. The research is undeniable: when schools and communities embrace the arts - dance, music, theatre, visual and media arts - students benefit, educators are more effective, and learning communities are revolutionized.
Designated by Congress in 2010, National Arts in Education Week is a celebration of the transformative power of the arts in education. This year, we will be celebrating throughout the community from September 9-15, 2018, and I encourage all supporters of arts, culture, and education-as well as our elected officials and education leaders-to join with us!
“Well, the Iranian community-American community is often considered a diaspora. In fact, the Iranian-American community is an extension of Iranian civilization. Wherever Iranians are, they have experienced the very connections, particularly emotional connections, that exist among Iranians with their homeland, it gives this notion that being an Iranian-American means that you know where your parents came from and what Iranians’ contributions have been throughout history.”
Art, Identity, and the Iranian-American Narrative: A Panel Discussion
Aftab Committee and the Persian Program at George Washington University Present: Art, Identity and the Iranian-American Narrative: A Panel Discussion.
"That's what interests me the most—to think differently, not to make new questions/problems, but to answer the traditional ones in a new way."
Check out Aftab's first animation video!
I am drawn to pain, and I feel a deep relatedness to suffering. I feel a connectedness to people who live on the margins of society, in poverty, isolated, and excluded.
"The current narrative I wrote myself into is still unfolding, and we have yet to see how it will end."
What inspired your Metamorphosis collection? When looking for ideas and inspirations, where do you normally go and what do you do to get into the creative mood?
In the summer of 2015, I was awarded a residency fellowship from the Cooper Union School of Art. Ever-present at the residence was the influence of the Cooper Union New Academic Building. The design of the building resonated strongly with the architectural leanings of my artwork. Its twisting frame and exceptional lattice-work yields unique light inside and out. Being awarded the residency was truly serendipitous, as I was inspired instantly.
Allowing the structure’s influence to permeate my stay, I used aluminum sheets as the medium, in part, for reflecting the usage of metal in Deconstructivism. Alluding to the chaotic form of the building’s insides, I used the material’s malleability to confuse the painted surface with its added dimension.
The name of the piece is a nod to the architect Thom Mayne, of the Morphosis architectural firm.
As with Metamorphosis, my work has always been influenced by my surrounding and travels. In all the places I’ve been, from ancient ruins to the world’s most modern cities, there is a blurred line of ancient and modern that brings my inspiration. The skeletal remains of ancient dwellings within the oldest cities of the East parallel the framework of newly-birthed construction sites in (comparatively) new Western cities.
Could you please describe the physical and artistic aspects of your work on a daily basis? I assume that shaping aluminum sheets and painting with acrylic must be physically tasking. Please correct me, if I am wrong.
The majority of my works are large-scale, so there always physically laborious moments. I work by shifting between wall and floor, so the heavier or bulkier the piece, the more physically demanding it is.
Do you know ahead of time what you are going to create or do you design your work as you go along with the creative process?
I have a general idea of what I am going to work on. Basics start with what material I will be using, what colors to coordinate, and the size of the work. To understand the general form and design, I use pen drawn sketches, ink drawings, and small maquettes. Occasionally, I collaborate with engineers for statics of standing pieces.
By not following a structured plan, I allow the dialogue of the creative process to surprise me. I let the paint guide me to the next step of what I can bring on to the next layer. As the imagery develops I refer to my photographs for detailed areas of the painting.
Could you please share a few details about your current project with our viewers/readers?
Since my work is very architecturally influenced, I’m translating the material used in that field for my work as well. Specifically for my current piece, I’ve chosen Balsa wood to experiment upon. I’m also considering a layered-structure installation to be a more blended combination of both on the wall and free forms into the gallery space.
"In my subsequent series, I Am Not A Persian Carpet (2001), I challenge the ways that cultures have been reduced to commodities. Based on my observations in Europe and North America, it is not an exaggeration to say that in the West, the only thing known about Persian culture may very well be its carpets. In the United States specifically, all products from Iran were banned, the most lucrative ones—and, therefore, the most forbidden—being Persian carpets and caviar."
اردشیر محصص از معدود هنرمندان مدرن ایرانی بود که در عرصه جهانی درخشید و آثار او مورد تمجید و استقبال هنرمندان و تحلیلگران هنری جهان قرارگرفت. بیشک اگر قرار باشد تاریخی بر هنرهای تصویری مدرن ایران نگاشته شود، بی نام او و تخصیص فصلی به فعالیت های هنری او امکان پذیر نخواهد بود. بخشی از تصاویری که او خلق کرد از آثار یکتا و درخور تامل در گنجینه آثار بصری ایران هستند.
در طول قرن ها و هزاره ها، هنر ایران در برابر تاثیرات متقابلی با دیگر فرهنگهای همجوار قرار داشته است. این تاثیرات که شاید بارِز ترین انها از سرزمینهای میانرودان ( بین النهرین) شروع میگردد، تا دورترین سرزمین ها مانند چین، روم و مصر گسترش مییابد. در این میان برای نسل امروز ایران شاید مهمترین تاثیر که تا به امروز ادامه یافته است، تاثیر هنرهای سرزمین های اروپایی و نگاهِ جهانِ مدرن، در هنر ایران است. سلسله مقاله های پیش رو تلاشی است برای پرداختی کوتاه و گذرا به تاثیر نقاشی اروپایی ( غربی) بر نقاشی ایرانی.
معتبر سعی می کند کارھایش تا حد ممکن شکل روایی نداشته اشتھ باشد، اما از آنجا که تعبیر و تفسیر بخش تفکیک ناپذیری از طرح واره ھای اوست، ھریک از طرح ھا و فیگورھایش حامل نوعی احساس روایی پررمز و راز نیز ھست
Washington, DC welcomed Iranian artist, Mehdi Ghadyanloo, in conversation with Andy Shallal, Iraqi-American activist and owner of Busboys and Poets.
"Art is a well respected and serious part of the Chicago cultural scene. People from all walks of life come in droves to art shows regardless of distance or weather. Chicagoans support artists that speak with an authentic voice. It affords a certain amount of freedom to pursue that which inspires you."
Meet Maz Jobrani at the Aftab Committee and National Iranian American Council (NIAC) special film screening of Jimmy Vestvood Amerikan Hero! Stay after the film for a Q&A session with the star, moderated by friend and comedian Martin Amini
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“As the first images, these defiant and imposing women in the “Listen” series encourage viewers to participate in a larger cultural discourse when looking at the rest of the exhibition. The collection is filled with interwoven narratives and personal stories about modern life in Iran and the Arab world, challenging the Western media’s dominant portrayal of Middle Eastern women as “marginalized.”
“My work’s highest aim is to be an eulogy to Iranian history and culture.”
"Confronted with the Ottoman threat, the Saffavid rulers’ agenda to build a strong centralized nation-state influenced the development of the arts in the sense that a new unitary style emerged, combining preexisting elements of Timurids from Herat and the Turkmans from Tabriz, respectively representing Iran’s eastern and western halves."