Opening Reception: Thursday, May 11 from 6pm to 9pm
Long celebrated as a center of art, architecture, and culture in Persia, Shiraz was one of the most important cities in the medieval Islamic world, with major Jewish and Christian communities. It is known for its beautiful gardens with lush fruit trees, and for being the motherland of famous Persian poets (as well as the birthplace of Shirazi wine). Shiraz continues to be the inspiration and homeland to some of the most celebrated artists in modern day Iran. From Shiraz, With Love introduces you to this distant, wondrous city through the diverse works of nine Shiraz-based artists. Their art uncovers the extraordinary creative impulses of contemporary art in Shiraz, offering viewers unique insight into the culture of art in Iran.
A sneak preview of this exhibition was unveiled last October at the Syra Arts Gallery in Georgetown, and now Syra Arts, White Lily Arts, and the Aftab Committee are pleased to unveil the second part of this retrospective. Featured artists include Hasan Golbon, Mahsa Roosta, Ismael Cheshrokh, Najmeh Pourshojai, Mohammad Akbari, Farzad Hassanzadeh, Saeed Gholami, Alireza Bahrani, and Behrooz Moslemi. While the works of these talented artists reflect the most recent achievements in contemporary art, they also follow the historical developments of Iranian art with intelligence and passion.
Cultural identity and ethnic distinction are under the magnifying lens more than ever before. Recent developments on the political scene in the United States in targeting and restricting specific groups have had an important effect on the art world. From Shiraz, with Love is an exhibition curated with absolute faith that art and culture have the ability to educate and promote cultural awareness and that their free exchange between nations have a profound effect on getting societies and individuals closer together as they understand each other. Luckily, works in this exhibition were transported to the US before the bans imposed by the current US administration, otherwise this important art show would have been more difficult and risky to organize.
SYRA Arts has been promoting contemporary Middle Eastern and Iranian art and artists in the United States since 2011. SYRA provides a glimpse into the depth and diversity of contemporary art in the region by showcasing the works of artists from different generations in a wide range of artistic mediums.
White Lily Arts is a company that focuses on empowering underrepresented artists.
The Aftab Committee is a non-profit organization that supports Iranian-American artists and their works. By raising awareness, promoting education, and facilitating various events and exhibits, Aftab aims to increase public consciousness and appreciation of Iranian-American artists.
The Syra Arts Gallery is located at 1054 31st Street NW, #A, Canal Square.