Art Cantara is a non-profit association promoting artistic expression and creating bridges between cultures. We organize events mainly focused on the artistic creations of the Southern/Eastern countries to introduce them to the public, in Europe in general and in Belgium in particular.
The poem of Mawlānā Jalāl ad-Dīn Rumi who accompanies me since my earliest childhood says:
"You are here to unite, not to separate"
And that's what makes me love all bridges, that of art in particular, hence the name Art Cantara.
"Art" is the universal language where everyone finds himself with no need to speak, translate or look for equivalents.
"Cantara" means bridge in Arabic.
Although of Persian origin, I chose a word in Arabic to designate this association. Indeed, like Latin in the Western world, the Arabic language federated the Eastern world.
Breaking stereotypes in general, mostly about women and about my Iranian sisters. Through the language of art, show their creativity, dynamism and modernity. This is how Art Cantara was born, this bridge that I do not want to be one way.
Photo exhibition: "Unexposed Wishes"
"Close your eyes, breathe deeply and imagine yourself in ten years."
We are pleased to present the project "Unexposed Wishes": an exhibition of photos of Iranian teenagers around the theme "my dream for the future".
Fery Malek-Madani and her team of young filmmakers and artists animated photography workshops in different parts of Iran with Iranian schoolgirls. Throughout these workshops, the schoolgirls were invited to reflect on their wishes, dreams and desires for their future.
Thus, each student took a picture of her dream, 5 photos of the elements that bring her closer to the realization of her dream, and 5 photos of the obstacles that keep her away, while commenting on each photo taken.
About 200 girls from different cities in Iran aged 12 to 16 participated in the "Unexposed Wishes" project.
The members of our international jury have made a selection of the most beautiful images, which have been exhibited in Strasbourg, Brussels, Berlin, Heidelberg, Vienna, Tehran, Yazd...
The documentary "The Girls"
April 17, 2017
April 25, 2017
August 28, 2017
German Television DW reporting on the Green Party in Heidelberg and Franziksa Brantner who was host to our exhibition (min 2:55) in this beautiful town.
Aired on September 5, 2017
Wien Television reporting on our exhibition.
Strasbourg 14-23 March 2017
The first stage of our exhibition "Unexposed Wishes" ended in Strasbourg. The photo exhibition of young schoolgirls from Iran as well as the related documentary film "The Girls" were greeted with great enthusiasm by the public.
Art Cantara warmly thanks the support of Mrs Nawel Rafik-Elmrini, Deputy Mayor of Strasbourg in charge of European and International Relations, and Mrs Ulrike Lunacek, Vice-President of the European Parliament.
Brussels 19-28 April 2017
The exhibition "Unexposed Wishes" ended in Brussels on Friday April 29. We had the pleasure of welcoming many people to the opening and screening of the documentary "The Girls", which was also broadcasted in a loop throughout the exhibition. Sunday, April 23, an evening organized in commemoration of the great poet Forough Farrokhzad took place in the exhibition. A nice discovery for many visitors.
The journey continues to Berlin at Tiergartenstrasse 15, in the prestigious Landdesvertretung Baden-Württemberg.
Berlin 03 - 23 may 2017
The "Unexposed Wishes" exhibition in Berlin is over. We were delighted to hear from Landesvertretung Baden-Württemberg that this was the most visited exhibition they had ever had in their gallery.
Heidelberg 24 - 28 july 2017
In Heidelberg, we had a fantastic screening of the documentary film ”The Girls” with a lot of questions about women’s situation in Iran. Our host was Franziska Brantner of the Green party who is running for the German federal elections in September. We wish her the best.
She deserves to be reelected. In our world, we really need these defenders of women’s rights, peace and equality.
My wish is that, one day, we have plenty of these women in Iran’s Parliament as well.
Vienna 4 - 22 September
In Vienna, the screening of the documentary "The Girls" took place in the presence of many Austrian and Iranian guests at the exhibition "Unexposed Wishes" in the magnificent hall of the City Hall, Vienna.
We were invited by Barbara Humer, the alderman of the Austrian Green Party.
The exhibition was seen by many visitors who have discovered with enthusiasm the new generation of Iranian women.
Teheran 2-4 october 2017
The exhibition "Unexposed Wishes" was held in Teheran in the Elahe gallery from 2-4 October 2017.
During three evenings, various audiences attended the screening of the documentary "The Girls" followed by debate.
The Iranian public was very surprised by the girls' creativity and their outspokenness in the film.
Yazd 7 october 2017
The exhibition "Unexposed Wishes" took place on October 7, 2017 in the evening in Yazd, in the beautiful Dolatabad Garden.
Under the patronage of the president of the Javadolameh Foundation, whith whom we had worked with the high school girls a year ago.
High school girls, often accompanied by their parents, officials from Yazd municipality, officials from different schools in the city were present and attended the screening of the film "girls".
Parents were very happy to hear from their daughters about their future, and politicians took note of the wishes of this youth.
We were congratulated by the parents and officials of the city of Yazd,
A real recognition of our long-term work.