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Aphrodite Désirée Navab, detail from "Super East-West Woman," digital print
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Caption BulletAphrodite Désirée Navab, detail from "Super East-West Woman," digital print; courtesy of University Art Gallery

Behind “The Veil”: National Exhibit Reveals Cultural and Political Mystique

“The Veil: Visible and Invisible Spaces,” a national traveling exhibition of 36 works of art that puts veils and veiling in their many manifestations and interpretations into visual context, opens Wednesday, Feb. 3 and continues through March 3 in the University Art Gallery on the campus of California State University, Dominguez Hills.

An opening reception will take place on Feb. 3 from 5:30 to 7:30 p.m. and will include a lecture, “The Art of the Veil,” at 6 p.m. by CSU Dominguez Hills Art Department alumnus H.K. Zamani. A Los Angeles-based artist and curator, Zamani is the director of the Long Beach City College Art Gallery and the founder/director of PØST Gallery.

“The Veil: Visible and Invisible Spaces” intends to engage received wisdom about the veil — particularly current clichés and stereotypes about Islamic practices — and to reflect on the great ubiquity, importance and profundity of the veil throughout human history and imagination. The exhibition will be divided into three categories: the sacred veil, the sensuous veil, and the sociopolitical veil.

Although the featured artists’ works speak to myriad aspects of the veil, the exhibition is not a documentary. It is a visual companion to Jennifer Heath’s edited volume, “The Veil: Women Writers on Its History, Lore, and Politics” (University of California Press, 2008).

“To be veiled is, to some degree, to be unseen — the condition of both attraction and repulsion,” says Heath who invited visual artists — including videographers, filmmakers and new media artists, as well as painters, sculptors, performance, and installation artists — from around the world to investigate and re-vision the veil for the book.

Artists featured in “The Veil: Visible and Invisible Spaces” include Sama Alshaibi, Tulu Bayar, Tiffany Besonen, Elizabeth Bisbing, Christine Breslin, Jo-Ann Brody, Fatma Charfi, Frances Charteris, Juliet Davis, Rebecca DiDomenico, Yassi Golshani, Ana Maria Hernando, Valari Jack, Tsehai Johnson, Tania Kamal-Eldin, Deb King, Mary Kite, Shakuntala Kulkarni, Anita Kunz, Judith Selby Lang, Victoria May, Aphrodite Desiree Navab, Brenda Oelbaum, Sara Rahbar, Sharmila Samant, Larissa Sansour, Asma Shikoh, Mary Tuma, Kerry Vander Meer, Arien Valizadeh, Eve Whittaker, Sherry Wiggins, and Helen Zughaib.

Also on display in the gallery will be the inaugural exhibition of the “Student Showcase” series featuring 25 theatre posters from Art 341-Sources of Graphic Design taught by designer and lecturer John Lionel Pierce.

The exhibitions and related events are sponsored by the Instructionally Related Activities Committee of the Associated Students, Inc.

Open from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Monday through Thursday, the University Art Gallery is located in Room A-107 on the first floor of LaCorte Hall. Admission to the exhibits are free of charge. The gallery will be closed Monday, Feb. 15 for President's Day.

To view more images from the exhibit, click here. For more information about “The Veil: Visible and Invisible Spaces” visit www.theveilbook.com.

For more information about the University Art Gallery and others shows during the 2009-10 season, click here or call (310) 243-3334.

- Kathy Zimmerer


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Last updated January 27, 2010 12:49 PM by Joanie Harmon