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Zawaya Film Showing: "Islamic Art: Mirror of the Invisible World"
Islamic Cultural Center of Northern California
Oakland, CA
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Zawaya Film Showing: "Islamic Art: Mirror of the Invisible World"

The "Doorway to Islamic Civilization" weekend-long event will kick off with a beautiful film:  "Islamic Art:  Mirror of the Invisible World", followed by a panel discussion including filmmaker Michael Wolfe, and Islamic art and architecture experts Dr. Heba Mostafa, R. Hussain, Fateme Montazeri, and Arash Shirinbab.  The panel discussion will be followed by live music by the Aswat Ensemble and refreshments.

Film Showing:  Islamic Art:  Mirror of the Invisible World
Date:  Friday, November 9, 2012
Time:  7:30 PM  10:00 PM
Venue:  Main Hall, ICCNC, 1433 Madison St., Oakland
Ticket price:  $5 online / $10 at the door

Film Running Time: Approximately 90 minutes

Executive Producers: Alex Kronemer and Michael Wolfe

Panelists:  Michael Wolfe, Dr. Heba Mostafa, R. Hussain, Fateme Montazeri, and Arash Shirinbab

About the Panelists:

Michael Wolfe is co-founder of Unity Productions Foundation and Co-Executive Producer for UPF Films. For 15 years, Wolfe was publisher of Tombouctou Books, a small press that published poetry and avant garde prose. Michael's first books on Islam were The Hadj, a first-person travel account, and One Thousand Roads to Mecca, an anthology of 10 centuries of travelers' writing. After September 11th, he edited Taking Back Islam: American Muslims Reclaim Their Faith which won a 2003 Wilbur Award. In 1997, Wolfe hosted a televised account of the Hajj from Mecca forNightline. The program was nominated for Peabody, Emmy, George Polk, and National Press Club Awards. In 2003, Wolfe worked with CNN-International reporter Zain Verjee to produce a documentary on the Hajj. Michael is the co-director of UPF's Hollywood engagement program, called MOST  Muslims on Screen and Television, which works with writers and producers to develop more true-to-life characters and storylines of Muslims on television and in films.

Dr. Heba Mostafa trained as an architect and architectural historian in Cairo, Egypt and Cambridge, UK.  She currently teaches Islamic art and architecture at UC Berkeley.

R. Hussain is an art historian and curator currently residing in the SF Bay Area.  Her research interests include the influence of Eastern cultures on the Italian Baroque.  She has written and lectured extensively.

Fateme Montazeri is currently earning her PhD in Islamic art.  She is the co-founder of Ziya Art Studio at Berkeley.  She has a degree in calligraphy from National Institute of Iranian Calligraphers and serveral of her tazheeb (decorative border painting) and calligraphy works have been exhibited around the Bay Area.  Visit www.wix.com/ziyastudio/ziya.

Arash Shirinbab is a calligrapher, and the co-founder of and principal at Ziya Art Studio.  Since 2011, he has successfully operated this studio in Berkeley by providing authentic Islamic and Persian calligraphy artwork.

About Aswat:  Aswat is the Bay Area's premier Arab music ensemble sponsored by Zawaya. True to Zawaya's commitment to pluralism and inclusion, Aswat is a multi-ethnic and multi-racial music ensemble that reaches out to the diverse Bay Area community with folkloric, classical, and contemporary Middle Eastern music. Aswat's doors are open to all who want to participate in the exciting, enriching exchange between Arab Americans and other communities through the universal language of music. For more information about Aswat, please visit www.zawaya.org.

About the Film:
Unity Productions Foundation (UPF) is proud to present its latest documentary film, Islamic Art: Mirror of the Invisible World. This new ninety-minute film takes audiences on an epic journey across nine countries and over 1,400 years of history. It explores themes such as the Word, Space, Ornament, Color and Water and presents the stories behind many great masterworks of Islamic Art and Architecture.

The film explores the richness of Islamic art in objects big and small, from great ornamented palaces and the play of light in monumental mosques to the exquisite beauty of ceramics, carved boxes, paintings and metal work. It revels in the use of color and finds commonalities in a shared artistic heritage with the West and East. The film also examines the unique ways in which Islamic art turns calligraphy and the written word into masterpieces and develops water into an expressive, useful art form.

Like all art, Islamic art carries with it the fundamental values and perspectives of the artists who created it as well as those who commissioned and paid for it. It incorporates the basic themes of transcendent beauty common to all creative endeavors.

Narrated by Academy Award winning performer Susan Sarandon, this dazzling documentary reveals the variety and diversity of Islamic art. It provides a window into Islamic culture and brings broad insights to the enduring themes that have propelled human history and fueled the rise of world civilization over the centuries.

To learn more about the film, please visit http://www.islamicart.tv/


About "Doorway to Islamic Civilization: Hands-On Workshops on Islamic Art & Culture"

Islamic civilization boasts an intellectual, artistic, and cultural heritage that spans continents and centuries.   The gradations of shape, color, taste, texture, and sound that exist within and between Muslim peoples and cultures are as rich and diverse as their ideas and attitudes, as well as their languages, races, and ethnicities.  Out of this fertile and potent mix of elements emerged artforms and practices that can enrich and beautify our lives.

Zawaya thus launches an original event:  "Doorway to Islamic Civilization", a weekend collection of hands-on workshops on Islamic art and culture set against the current social backdrop of Islamophobia.  These workshops are meant to give those interested the opportunity to get to know Islam and Muslims by providing a safe space within which to explore and experience the Islamic sense of beauty embodied in art, crafts, music, architecture, and more.  In addition to the workshops, there will be a film showing of "Islamic Art: Mirror of the Invisible World" followed by a panel discussion between the filmmaker, Michael Wolfe, and Islamic art and architecture experts.  The Mevlevi Order of America will also be present to offer a Dhikr (a devotional act) by Mevlevi musicians and dervish turners.

This event is co-sponsored by The Afghan Coalition, The Arab Cultural and Community Center of San Francisco (ACCC), Arab Resource and Organizing Center (AROC), Aslan Media, The Center for Islamic Studies at the Graduate Theological Union (GTU) in Berkeley,  Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR-SFBA), Interfaith Coalition for Immigrant Rights (CLUE CA), Islamic Cultural Center of Northern California (ICCNC), Islamic Network Group (ING), and Ziya Art Studio.

Weekend Schedule:


7:30 p.m. FILM SHOWING:  "Islamic Art:  Mirror of the Invisible World"

Panel Discussion:  Michael Wolfe, Dr. Heba Mostafa, R. Hussain, Fatima Montazeri, Arash Shirinbab

Aswat Performance and Refreshments


9:00 a.m. WORKSHOPS start

7:30 p.m. DHIKR by the Mevlevi Order of America


9:00 a.m. WORKSHOPS continue

5:00 p.m. WORKSHOPS end

Workshop Categories:  Art & Architecture, Arts & Crafts, Calligraphy, Lifestyle & Culture, Music, Writing, and Youth (5-16) workshops.  

To see full workshop descriptions, teacher bios, and workshop details, please visit www.zawaya.org before making your reservations for workshops.


Islamic Cultural Center of Northern California (View)
1433 Madison St.
Oakland, CA 94612
United States


Arts > Literary
Arts > Visual
Education > Workshops
Film > Movies
Music > All Ages
Music > Folk
Music > Global
Music > Spiritual
Music > World

Minimum Age: 5
Kid Friendly: Yes!
Dog Friendly: No
Non-Smoking: Yes!
Wheelchair Accessible: Yes!


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