ARTS & CULTURE BEAT

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ARTS & CULTURE BEAT

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[FILM]
Iranian Actress' Photo Controversy

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An Iranian actress GOLSHIFTEH FARAHANI has caused a storm of controversy online recently after appearing naked in a photoshoot for a FrenchJavanan-Mix1285-03 magazine.
Farahani, who played a nurse in 2008 film Body of Lies with LEONARDO DICAPRIO, says Iranian authorities warned her she was no longer welcome in her native country after the photos appeared in MADAME LE FIGAR. In the black and white photo the actress is pictured facing the camera with her hand covering her breasts.
The photos were taken as part of a an advertising campaign for France's Cesar Academy, France's equivalent to the American Academy of Motion Pictures Arts and Sciences, entitled Revelations 2012: Body and Spirit. She appeared in the news magazine in protest against the ultra-conservative cultural policies, which she claims are restricting Iran's film industry. Farahani posted the image to her Facebook page which was immediately bombarded with thousands of comments. Women in the Islamic Republic of Iran are required to wear a hijab which covers their hair.
Award-winning actress and playwright MARY APICK said performers in Iran will likely feel more pressure to adhere to the regime's notion of strict Islamic code in both their performances on screen and their personal life. "No one has ever done anything like this. This is truly the bravest, boldest thing I've ever seen," Apick said in an interview with CNN.

[THEATER]
UNESCO Recognizes Iran Play 
Iran's traditional TAZIEH, comparable to an opera, is now officially on the UNESCO'S List of Intangible Cultural Heritage in Need of Urgent Safeguarding. Taizeh are traditional Persian theatrical genres in which the drama is conveyed predominantly through music and singing.
The discussion about the play took place back in November during the fifth session of UNESCO's Intergovernmental Committee in Nairobi, Kenya. The officials say the registration will help strengthen these traditional arts and highlight the intangible heritage of the country.
Taizeh is a ritual art that recounts religious events, historical and mythical stories and folklore through poetry, music, song, gestures and movements. Other Iranian events and arts on the UNESCO's list include the Persian New Year or Nowruz, and the Iranian classical music.

[ART]
Iranian Works at India Art Fair

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Curator AMIRALI GHASEMI's invitation-only event, titled "The Elephant in the Dark" at the 2012 INDIA ART FAIR (IAF) is showing works by Iranian artists Alireza Fani, Khosrow Hassanzadeh, Nosratollah Moslemian and Pooya Aryanpour, who will be juxtaposed against five Indian artists: Rameshwar Broota, Ravinder Reddy, Chittouvanu Mazumdar, Simrin Mehran Agarwal and Biju Joze.
The India Art Fair (IAF), where more than 1,000 art works from 91 galleries will be shown. The hope is that a significant percentage of visitors will convert into buyers.

EVENTS
[SALT LAKE CITY, UT]
Gallery Features Fahimeh Amiri & Loné Vilnius
Two very different artists exhibit their work at a Salt Lake City show this month. Native Iranian FAHIMEH AMIRI has won awards for her book illustrations and is an instructor in Islamic art. She finds delight and occasional whimsy in the solemnities of the Persian miniature tradition.
Fahimeh Amiri grew up in Tehran, Iran. In 1973 she received a BFA from the Boston Museum of Fine Arts/Tufts University. Her art has gained international attention through exhibitions including the New York International Art Expo. Her specific areas of expertise are picture book design, botanical illustration, Islamic art, graphic design and Persian miniature.
LONة VILNIUS began her education at the Copenhagen School of Art. She then migrated to the United States with her family and attended Eastern Michigan Fine Arts Program in Ann Arbor, Michigan. Vilnius uses junk on the street and at garage sales to create imaginative pieces. 
Through March 2 2012
Fahimeh Amiri & Loné Vilnius
Finch Lane Gallery, 54 Finch Lane
801-596-5000 for tickets
SLCClassic.com/arts

[LONDON, ENGLAND]
'The House of Bernarda Alba' with Shohreh Aghdashloo
Originally by Federico Garcيa Lorca, and in a new version by Emily Mann, The House of Bernarda Alba tells the story of the powerful matriarch Bernarda Alba who decrees to her five daughters that the household will enter a period of eight years mourning, following the death of her husband. As Bernarda's oppression of her daughters increases it is more than the girls' liberty that is in danger.
With SHOHREH AGHDASHLOO leading the cast as Bernarda Alba, the play's setting is now relocated to rural Iran. BIJAN SHEIBANI has previously directed work at theatres including the Royal Court, Soho Theatre and Young Vic. He is an Associate Director at the National Theatre, where his productions include Our Class and The Kitchen.

Through March 3 2012
The House of Bernard Alba
Almeida Street, Greater London N1 1TA, United Kingdom
020 7359 4404 or
 www.almeida.co.uk/events for info

[LOS ANGELES, CA]
COMEDY BAZAAR
Every Monday at Laugh Factory Hollywood, join the crowd of young and old Middle Easterners as well as fellow Angelenos for a night of comedy bliss by comedians of Persian, Arabic, Armenian, Turkish, American and Asian descent. The comedy club is equipped with Persian tea for the evening. 
Upcoming shows feature PETER THE PERSIAN, RIMA FAKIH, EMAN, ARON KADER, SHAWN PELOFSKY, ASIF ALI, CHRIS JAMES, AHMED AHMED, SAMMY OBEID, OMID SINGH, AMIR K., KABIR SINGH, RAJ SHARMA and ERIK GRIFFIN.

Monday Nights
Laugh Factory Hollywood
8001 W. Sunset Blvd, Los Angeles
www.laughfactory.com for tickets