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Feb 19, 2017
2:00 PM to 4:00 PM
Pulling Back the Veil on Iran
Museum of International Folk Art

Join award-winning screenwriter and producer Kirk Ellis and his wife Sheila, passionate folk art collector, for images and experiences from their recent visit to historic cities of Teheran, Yazd and Isfahan, Iran.

The Iran that Kirk and Sheila will talk about is one famous for many things—among them its long tradition of Persian–Islamic arts and architecture whose covered bridges, palaces, mosques and minarets in some instances dating as long ago as 2,500 years. The Ellis’ conversation will pull back the veil on an ancient culture overshadowed by decades of Western media reporting that has been more influenced by political events. And, Sheila will relate what it was like for a woman to travel in Iran.

As Kirk says, "The country’s portrayal in Western media bears little resemblance to what Sheila and I experienced. We were struck by the commonalities, finding there a people who identify more with their remarkable Persian heritage. This trip—our first—was a revelation. Iran is an overwhelmingly welcoming country—secular, urban and cosmopolitan.” 

The Ellis’ visually stunning images—from street and market scenes, to the arts and crafts, and architecture—will be the jumping off point for a lively and wide-ranging conversation.

Kirk noted that, “While there were restrictions on our movements—staying with an authorized guide with an approved itinerary—we had more freedom than we’d expected and were able to slip the leash and wander.” This is evident in their extraordinary and not-often seen images.

“The genie is out of the bottle and he will be hard to put it back in. Sheila and I want folks who attend our talk to know that you have to go beyond what you read in the papers—nothing beats the face-to-face interaction like we had. We hope everyone leaves as inspired as we were by this amazing country.”

Kirk and Sheila’s hour-long conversation will be followed by a Q & A with the audience.

For more information, contact Aurelia Gomez at 505-476-1211 , aurelia.gomez@state.nm.us

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