A Media Artist's Response To Failing Diplomacy

When BriAnna Olson's pacifist views were confronted by an adamant American couple, she decided to heed their challenge and head to Tehran-- the epicenter of the Axis of Evil nation.

Amongst a landscape of failed diplomacy and media smear campaigns, she and fellow artist Michael Pope found a society far more alive and hospitable than they'd ever been led to believe.

Like jesters of a modern-day Magellan, they've returned with stories and insights to a culture few American's have seen first hand.

Sunday, November 2, 2008

Life Goes on in Tehran - October Feature

A little something I wrote up about our trip was featured in Life Goes on in Tehran. Head over there to check it out .

Also, bonus points if you find Michael in one of the photos.


  1. Wow, I'm very impressed. I would love to travel to Iran. I'm just so moved that you actually went and took so much from it. You're a great citizen, and kudos to you for fighting the propaganda.

    However I supposed it's understandable for the media to sort of demonize Iran, for the safety of Americans. If the death to America slogans weren't out, and Ahmadinejad's comments, than the media would also still beperceived in a negative fashion.

    I'd love to visit the middle east, but as an American with blue eyes and freckles, I don't think it will be happening anytime soon. However, I feel the election of Barack Obama will bring some sort of new relations with the world. Or at least I hope.

    I'm glad that in the face of cynicism, you went to Iran, and showed that it's not so bad after all. Cynics aren't healthy for society, anything is possible, and our country has a way of proving that so over and over. And I just want to say once more, I really admire what you did.

  2. I love this whole idea. I wish so badly I had the money to go overseas right now and do anything I can do. Seeing people like you gives me hope that I will be able to help one day.
    Thank you.

  3. thanks for sharing the presentation last night bri!

    no need to fret about not have money to travel, guys.

    unconditional love can start (and some might argue that it must) in your own back yard!!!!!!

  4. @ eddie. Awesome, awesome. Though don't believe the hype re: your western appearance making you the target of hate in the middle east. I could easily pass for middle eastern/iranian, but Michael was clearly American and people went out of their way to say hello and welcome.

    @ alexa. People should travel more, for sure. It's like starring in your own movie, expanding your horizons, and finding yourself all in one foreign package.

    @ val. You are my favorite cellist ever (yo-yo wha?). Thank you for coming to the show and thank you for seeing through the crazy to the crazy beyond.