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Artists for Iran, A Celebration of the Arts and Human Rights

Contact: Sarah Holswade For Immediate Release
Tel: 310.657.5511

A Celebration of the Arts and Human Rights

Who: Visual artists, poets, writers, comedians, actors and more.

What: A night devoted to literary, visual and performing arts highlighting the issues of human rights in Iran and around the world.

Where: Levantine Cultural Center,
5998 W. Pico Blvd.
Los Angeles CA 90035

When: Dec. 12, 2009 from 7:30pm to 12am

Details: Free to the public, donations requested, open bar.

Capturing Neverland, A Photography Workshop for Orphans & Street Kids in Egypt

Using creativity to empower children

Levantine Cultural Center is pleased to sponsor a new project that builds bridges between Americans and the Middle East through both art and youth.

Kiyana, Sama'a, Whirling Dance Presentations and Workshops October 2009

Event Details
Oct 23 2009 7:00pm - Oct 25 2009 9:00pm
$40 in advance, 45 at the door ($38 members in advance); Oct. 23 conference tix $30
Click here to buy tickets
Levantine Center at Mimoda Studio
5774 W. Pico Blvd. corner of Ogden
entrance in rear, street parking

Kiyana dance, mystical whirling weekendKiyana dance, mystical whirling weekendOctober 23, Friday, 7-9 pm, Conference and Demonstration

October 24, Saturday, 6-9 pm, Training, Movements & Dancing

October 25, Sunday, 4:30-7:30 pm, Training, Movements & Dancing

Sama'a master Javad Tehranian returns for a national tour with Kiyana presentations in Los Angeles in October, teaching the Persian form of whirling or Sufi dance known as Kiyana.

Wear comfortable clothes and prepare for a three-hour intense dance and exercise workshop (Oct. 23 is a conference and presentation only).

Javad Tehranian teaches vital exercises, infinity respiration, eye exercises, and body discipline, as well as symmetric and asymmetric movements by the method of divided attention, inner development, rhythmical contemplative movements, and the  enchanting, euphoric Sama'a dance.

Kiyana, meaning “the origin”, is a system of movements and internal work coming from ancient Persia; it relates to the education and the complete development, the unity and oneness of the body, mind and spirit, cleanliness, purity, equilibrium, power, health of body, tranquility in the mind and subtility of the soul of human beings.

Iran's Old and New Guard Clash Over Elections

Mousavi Supporters Out En Masse Protest Ahmadinejad's Victory


Supporters of Mir Hossein Mousavi march through Valiasr Street during riots in Tehran on June 13, 2009Supporters of Mir Hossein Mousavi march through Valiasr Street during riots in Tehran on June 13, 2009

Young men runYoung men run

Defying an official ban, hundreds of thousands of Iranian supporters of Mir Hossein Mousavi demonstrate in Tehran on Monday, JunDefying an official ban, hundreds of thousands of Iranian supporters of Mir Hossein Mousavi demonstrate in Tehran on Monday, Jun

Hammer Museum’s “It Is What It Is: Conversations About Iraq” Through May 17th

Event Details
Apr 21 2009 12:00pm - May 17 2009 3:00pm
Free to the public.
Hammer Museum
10899 Wilshire Blvd
Los Angeles, CA 90024
Phone: 310.443.7000
Open Tues-Sun, 11 am-5 pm
some days extended hours

A café in Baghad: in the al-Mutannabi street districtA café in Baghad: in the al-Mutannabi street districtHow much do Americans really know about Iraq and W.’s military adventures there?

While scores of books appeared subsequent to the invasion and occupation that began in March 2003, few Hollywood films and documentaries delved below the surface ("In the Valley of Elah," for example, dealt more with Iraq vets here at home than "over there"). Moreover, since  the Occupation, fewer than 250 Iraqi nationals have been allowed to emigrate to the United States with refugee status (while over half a million crowd into Amman, Jordan). And for years, American media was banned from broadcasting or publishing images of body bags or coffins. Somehow, Iraq became remote, filtering through to us in a haze of figures and statistics.

A Photographer’s Quandary

Shirana Shahbazi at the Hammer MuseumShirana Shahbazi at the Hammer MuseumBy Catherine Batr

Levantine Center's Grand Opening Event with "Shoot an Iraqi" Artist/Writer Wafaa Bila

Event Details
Feb 27 2009 7:00pm - 10:00pm
$10 at the door includes a drink
Or $18 gets you an autographed copy
Beer/wine cash bar
*** Grand Opening Event ***
Levantine Cultural Center
5998 W. Pico Blvd.
Los Angeles CA 90035

Wafaa Bilal at Levantine CenterWafaa Bilal at Levantine CenterJoin us Fri. Feb. 27 when we inaugurate our new space with guest artist/writer Wafaa Bilal, co-author of Shoot An Iraqi: Art, Life and Resistance Under the Gun (with Kari Lydersen, from City Lights 2009). Also featuring Baghdadism, a new exhibit of drawings by Faris Al-Saffar. This evening is cosponsored by CODEPINK: Women for Peace. This program is made possible in part by a grant from the City of Los Angeles, Department of Cultural Affairs.

“History simply refuses to leave some people alone. The Iraqi artist Wafaa Bilal grew up under Saddam Hussein, survived two wars, was forced to live for periods at refugee camps in Kuwait and Saudi Arabia, and finally escaped to the U.S. in 1992 to study art.

Back From the West Bank: the Olive Tree Circus Multimedia Event

Event Details
Jan 8 2009 7:30pm - 9:00pm
Free to the public, donations welcome
Iman Cultural Center
3376 Motor Avenue
Los Angeles CA 90034
free lot parking
complementary Persian meal served to the first 50 people
courtesy of the Iman Center free street parking

Vivien Sansour, puppeteer-clown-actor-organizer of the Olive Tree Circus, is back from the olive harvest tour of West Bank towns including Bethlehem, Hebron and surrounding villages. She will be removing her red nose and sharing with a large audience the slide show, video and personal experiences of the fourteen Arab, Jewish and non-Middle Eastern Americans who traveled together, creating puppets and performing for the children of the West Bank in the service of peace.

Cosponsored by the Iman Cultural Center and the American Friends Service Committee, Middle East Peace Education Program.

Free to the public, RSVPs strongly advised: 310.657.5511.

Fez Concert, Celebrating City's 1200 Years

Event Details
Nov 15 2008 8:00pm
UCLA - Royce Hall
Free, but tickets are required, available from the UCLA Central Ticket Office
310.825.2101 or
Parking is also available for $9.00 per entry, Parking Kiosk on Westwood Blvd.
Fez: Queen of Cities

An evening of live music and dance at UCLA's Royce Hall

Identity and Community: an Exhibit

Armenian & Ethiopian Communities in Los Angeles

An exhibit by Ara Oshagan at the The Center for Experimental Art and Architecture through October 17, 2008

Born in Beirut of Armenian heritage, with his degrees in Physics and English Literature from UCLA and a degree in Geophysics from UC Berkley, by day Ara Oshagan is a geophysicist and at other times an accomplished documentary photographer. Scion of Armenian poets, writers and educators, Oshagan is also an avowed novelist manqué who uses photography to narrate his community’s stories—or in the case of “Identity and Community”—interwoven Armenian and Ethiopian narratives. With “three skeletons of novels in my head,” nearly a decade ago he began taking photography to a higher level and has held several solo and group exhibits.