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.

Tuesday, November 25, 2008

the Reviews are in...

It seems that our presentation @ Cloud Club, Boston was verrry well received despite our lofty goal of covering an epic week in only a few hours. I just wanted to share some of that feedback- !

"I personally found the underground / progressive scene in Tehran to be of particular interest - fascinating that you guys were able to find it and gain access the way you did. And really valuable for Americans to see Iranian civilians as culturally alive and separate from their government, some pockets of them subverting the norms of their society. The presentation itself was unpretentious, yes, and refreshingly open-hearted, without self-conscious analysis / deconstruction or pomo irony chic that remains so pervasive in artistic circles. Also valuable is giving people the space to process information individually; we (westerners, Americans) are perpetually told what to think about the world and ourselves by the media. But I think what's actually important / universal transcends that sort of grasping."

"I have hugenormous respect and admiration for what you are doing and think it makes great art AND entertainment AND education AND fun hooray!"

"Well I think one thing you had going for you is the sort of unpretentious and unassuming way you've gone into this whole thing. Keep it simple. There was just something I liked about the whole idea of this cool, smart, attractive young American lady going to Iran and coming back to Boston to tell all of her freaky drunko cross-dressing artist friends what she saw. That's the way these things should be done, IMHO. There's too much "expert analysis" and political spin on everything you hear about the Middle East these days."

Loves it.

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