On February 25, 2012, the Islamic
Cultural Center of Northern California (ICCNC) in Oakland will host a
screening of the video series Travels with H: Hafiz in a New World.
Award-winning Oakland filmmaker Raeshma Razvi will screen and present
her project. Joining her will be translator and author Robert Darr
reading his original translations, and composer and musical instrument
inventor Paul Rubenstein performing original music. This evening of
poetry, film and music will celebrate the creative process of
translating Hafiz across languages, cultures and media.
Travels with H is inspired by and linked together by the poetry of Hafiz, a 14th century scholar, Sufi mystic, and poet who lived in Shiraz in the Persian Empire, now Iran. Hafiz continues to this day to be extremely popular in Iran, and influential in much of the Muslim world. Based on research, interviews, and her own artistic interpretations of Hafiz’s poems, Raeshma has crafted ‘video postcards’ that take both documentary and fictional forms. She says that she “uses Hafiz’s poems as a lens through which to see aspects of contemporary life and landscapes, with an emphasis on themes such as daily work and spiritual longing, home and exile, seeking and transformation, and beauty and its diverse manifestations. In these films I wonder about how the questions Hafiz asked in his poems peek out –all these years later and distance away—into our everyday lives. What emerges is a kind of poetic travelogue through the ‘west’ with some verses from the ‘east.’”
A Creative Work Fund grant enabled this project between Raeshma Razvi and ICCNC. The Creative Work Fund is competitively granted to artists and organizations in the Bay area for collaborations leading to new art works, and is a program of the Walter and Elise Haas Fund, also supported by The William and Flora Hewlett Foundation and The James Irvine Foundation.
ICCNC is a pioneer in the Bay area in presenting new works of arts and culture by or about Muslims, and is a place where various ideas and thoughts about religion and culture are discussed and debated. ICCNC was featured in a New York Times article published in December 2010 as one of the emerging Muslim arts communities in the Bay area.
Date: Saturday, February 25
Time: 5:00 to 7:30 pm (includes screening, reception, musical performance)
Location: Islamic Cultural Center of Northern California (ICCNC)
Address: 1433 Madison St., Oakland CA 94612
Admission fee: $5
To RSVP please click here.
Videos from Travels with H. will be distributed weekly online beginning in March.
See the work and subscribe to the series at either of the web addresses above.
BIOS of PARTICIPANTS
Raeshma Razvi is a filmmaker, writer, and educator with years of experience in collaborative media-making. She has directed the full-length documentary, Home, about her Indian American family; shot projects in Kashmir and Jerusalem; and received an Open Society Fellowship to work with refugee teens in New York City.
Robert Abdul Hayy Darr is a translator, author and master boat builder who lives and works in Marin County, CA. He is the author of The Spy of the Heart and translator of Garden of Mystery. He has conducted extensive travel and philanthropic work in Afghanistan, and has been a student of classical Islamic culture for forty years.
Paul Rubenstein is a composer, musician, musical instrument inventor, recording engineer and educator. He has collaborated with spoken word artists and founded his own rock groups, including Bakshish. Based in New York City, he also creates film scores and teaches youth. www.ubertar.com