Sunday, December 06, 2009

Performance by Soraya Fallah & Cklara Moradian @ The Grand Central Art Center

Performance by Soraya Fallah & Cklara Moradian @ The Grand Central Art Center from Dharma Bum on Vimeo.

Breif Bio of the performers:

Cklara Moradian was born in the Kurdish province of Iran in 1987. Her parents are survivors of the Islamic Republic of Iran's 1980's massacre of political prisoners. Conceived and raised by incredible human rights activists and artists, she was introduced to activism and resistance at a very young age. Though her environment was brutal, she was protected by her family’s love and the richness of her Kurdish/Iranian culture. Her parent’s prison memoirs, revolutionary childhood, and the stories of the countless prisoner’s of conscious who were much like her “aunts” and “uncles” were her bedtime stories. Cklara and her family fled Iran and sought asylum from UNHCR in the former soviet satellite regions. The years between nine and thirteen can neither be summarized nor ignored. The stories of these years are the realities of thousands of other displaced refugees around the world. Though these years are full of madness and at times unbelievable tales of human atrocity, Cklara also remembers new languages, a world of experience, and touching human connections. Cklara has lived in California since the age of thirteen and has done her best to grow from a teenager into an adult woman. These years have been years of healing, reconciliation and of solidifying her much battered identity. She has also used this time to formulate her vision for a better world. She is currently studying Philosophy and is passionatly involved in human rights activism. She is active for minority rights, women and youth rights, and LGBTQQ rights in the US. She remains deeply involved in Iranian politics. She has won numerous awards for her writings and is invited to perform her work at events/conferences. She takes her membership with Amnesty International very seriously and collaborates closely with other NGOs to bring awareness towards progressive movements. She uses spoken word, poetry and art to break through to her generations’ epidemic of apathy and cynicism.

Soraya Fallah is an Iranian born Human Rights activist since her teenage years. She is one of the survivors of the Islamic Republic of Iran’s 1980’s mass execution of political prisoners. Since her flight from Iran in 1996, she has continued her activism in exile in Europe and the United States. She is the president and co-founder of World’s Women For life, an innovative organization aiming to teach and celebrate the beauty of life in the face of the culture of death. Soraya is co-founder, coordinator, and board member of Society for Human Rights in Iran, Southern California and a member of Amnesty international. She is an active member of “Campaign for One Million Signature, Change for Equality.” She has her M.A. in International Law and Relations and has given numerous lectures on the issues of women and minorities in Iran. Currently she works extensively with local and International NGOs to promote women and minority rights in the USA and throughout the world especially in Iran and Middle East. Soraya has always been an artist at heart. Though situational obstacles have not allowed her to pursue her many artistic talents professionally, she has continued promoting art as a form of activism. As a young woman in Iran she performed in revolutionary plays and wrote creative poems and essays promoting progressive women’s movements. She used her talents to imprint pictures of activists who were executed or martyred by drawing their portraits before photography became widely used in her town. She raised her voice and sang folklores and traditional Kurdish songs to pass down her heritage to the younger generation as a means of resistance towards the silent ethnocide of her culture. When buying and selling of traditional clothing became outlawed, she set out to design her own dresses at home. She has since designed traditional clothing and has even found ways to innovatively unite western styles with more eastern designs. She has always been a promoter and supporter of artists and has collaborated with filmmakers and photographers internationally who have been interested in her heritage or human rights causes. As a mother, she believes that her greatest art work is perhaps her children, in whom she has woven a passion for creation much more vigorous than her own. Her daughter attributes her writing abilities to her mother. One of her latest art projects was participation in an International Art conference at Cal Arts “Art in One World” with the theme of Motherhood and Revolution.

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