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IAWF Panel Discussion: Role Overload: Growing Pains and Learned Lessons on Managing the Many Roles We Play as Iranian-American Women

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IAWF Panel Discussion: Role Overload: Growing Pains and Learned Lessons on Managing the Many Roles We Play as Iranian-American Women

The Iranian-American Women Foundation (IAWF)’s Los Angeles Chapter Rising Leaders invites you to a mixer and panel discussion about Role Overload: Growing Pains and Learned Lessons on the Many Roles we Play as Iranian-American Women.


  • Dr. Nelly Farnoody-Zahiri, Family Psychologist, Author, Speaker, Director, ICPL
  • Sonya Sepahban, CEO & Co-Founder, OurOffice, Inc.
  • Roshi Rahnama, Founder & Director, AdvocArtsy Art Gallery – Iranian Contemporary Art Platform and Gallery


  • Ghazal Tajmiri, Senior Associate, Blank Rome LLP

This event is taking place on Sunday, November 4, 2018, from 5 – 7pm at The Space by AdvocArtsy Art Gallery.

Current Exhibition: Debut and Art Collaboration with Interior Designer Ryan Saghian.

10% of proceeds from purchases made during the event will be donated to IAWF

This event is free and space is limited. Kindly RSVP by November 1.

The mission of the Iranian American Women Foundation is to provide a platform for empowerment and networking among Iranian-American Women and to provide mentorship to younger generations of Iranians locally and globally.

Since its inception in Orange County, CA in 2012 the organization has empowered, inspired and connected thousands of women nationwide and globally. It has served as a home away from home; a community that celebrates creative, innovative, tenacious, and competitive women who are problem solvers and a force for the greater good.


ADVOCARTSY is a collaborative visual arts platform with the mission elevate awareness and engagement amongst artists, collectors, and the fine art community, with focus on Iranian contemporary art.

Pictured below, the evening’s panelists:

ADVOCARTSY Presents Pouya Afshar’s Solo Exhibition EN MASSE

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THE SPACE by ADVOCARTSY is pleased to present En Masse, a mixed media installation by Massachusetts-based Iranian-American artist Pouya Afshar. This is Afshar’s first solo exhibition with ADVOCARTSY.

En Masse is composed of paintings, drawings, and animations that explore the process of mourning on a personal, communal, and historical level. Afshar utilizes Persian and Muslim Shiite mourning rituals known as Ta’zie as a mode of contemplation. In Persian culture, Ta’zie is a centuries-old passion play inspired by historical and religious events that symbolize epic spirit and resistance.

En Masse was inspired by the death of Afshar’s mentor. Afshar’s search for internal peace led to an understanding of how individuals find catharsis as a group, whether as performers on stage or as audience members. Growing up in Iran, Afshar’s work is also informed by his exposure of Ta’zie plays. He materializes these emotions and traditions through paintings and drawings that he transforms into animation and video projections depicting his memories and dreams.

The notion of recollection is also explored in this exhibition through mounted layers of video projections that symbolize particles within one’s imagination. In one animation, a galloping horse—a key element of Ta’zie—is accompanied by a mash up soundtrack of Iranian percussion and a recording of the Catholic prayer Ave Maria.

“With this project, I aim to create dialogue on how one can recover from a loved one’s death and why community creates a platform to do so through art,” explains Afshar.

En Masse’s process of creation is as important to Afshar as the final product, which continues to evolve. The project has been his own grieving process and has pushed him, both as an artist and, more importantly, as a human being. “It has forced me to climb out of a protective shell and into a vulnerable atmosphere devoid of artistic ego,” says Afshar. “En Masse is a memorial service for whomever we miss. A reminder for us to embrace life’s inherited experiences and, if necessary, leave them behind.”

“Afshar’s work examines socio-political paradigms of Iranian culture through various media in order to offer an opportunity for cross-cultural understanding, while weaving his personal experiences with universal understandings of compassion and empathy,” says ADVOCARTSY founder Roshi Rahmana. “ADVOCARTSY is proud to represent Pouya in the United States.”
Afshar will be included in In the Fields of Empty Days: The Intersection of Past and Present in Iranian Art, presented by LACMA opening May 6, 2018.


Pouya Afshar is an alumnus from the California Institute of Arts Character Animation department and is a graduate of the University of California Los Angeles Graduate Department of Film and Television focusing in Animation and Digital Media. He has exhibited his work throughout the United States and Middle East, including: Harold M. Williams Auditorium at the Getty Center, Bovard Auditorium at University of Southern California, Royce Hall at University of California Los Angeles, Los Angeles County Museum of Art, Santa Monica Art studios, 18th street Art Center, and numerous galleries and art fairs around the world. Pouya has presented his research at Stanford University, Harvard University, University of Southern California, School of Museum of Fine Arts Boston, and Residency Unlimited NY. Pouya is the creator, character designer and producer of the animated series Rostam in Wonderland and the co-creator of 1PA2PA comics. He is currently an assistant professor of art and Design at University of Massachusetts, Lowell.


General information:

Exhibition dates: January 14–28, 2018

Public opening: Sunday, January 14, 2018, 4–7 p.m.

Closing reception: Sunday, January 28, 2018 4–7 p.m.

Hours: Tuesday–Saturday, 11 a.m.– 5 p.m.

Address: 9th and San Pedro Building, 924 S. San Pedro St., Los Angeles, 90015

Free parking: Behind the San Pedro Building

The Poetics of Diaspora: Iranian Contemporary Art

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Today’s in-demand contemporary Iranian artists—many of whom have now settled abroad—are working in a range of media, reflecting on issues such as identity, exile, and their multifaceted cultural heritage. For the first time, artnet Auctions will be focusing on these important artists and is proud to partner with ADVOCARTSY and guest curator Roshi Rahnama for The Poetics of Diaspora: Iranian Contemporary Art, a curated sale live for bidding on artnet Auctions from November 9–21.

To celebrate this partnership, artnet and ADVOCARTSY cordially invite you to an exclusive opening reception at THE SPACE in Downtown Los Angeles on Sunday, November 12. The event will feature an exhibition of highlights which will be on view for the duration of the sale, along with custom cocktails and the opportunity to learn more about, or place bids, on these vibrant works.




VIP Preview Sunday, November 12
4–7 p.m.

Then available for public viewing till

Tuesday, November 21


Gallery Hours:

Tuesday – Friday , 11 a.m. – 5 p.m.

or by appointment



924 S San Pedro Street

Los Angeles, CA 90015

Top artwork:
Googoosh I and Googoosh III (detail, set of two), 2010
Archival prints on Somerset artist paper
Edition of 8
Est. 6,000–8,000 USD
16.53 x 23.23 in. each

SHADI YOUSEFIAN’s Solo Exhibition Closing Reception

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Please join us on Sunday, October, 22, 2017 from 4-7 PM for

SHADI YOUSEFIAN’s Solo Exhibition Closing reception

at 924 S San Pedro St, Los Angeles, CA, 90015

At 5pm Leah Mirahkor will lead a gallery walk through entitled Aesthetics of Longing.

Leah Mirakhor teaches at Yale University and received her Ph.D. from the University of Wisconsin-Madison. Mirakhor’s works on 20th and 21st century American and diasporic literature and culture has been published in The Los Angeles Times, The Los Angeles Review of Books, Studies in American Jewish Literature and African American Review. 

ADVOCARTSY Presents Shadi Yousefian: A Solo Exhibition

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Please Join us for  

Shadi Yousefian’s Solo Exhibition 


from 4-7 pm on October 8, 2017


 at 924 S San Pedro St, Los Angeles, CA, 90015

parking and refreshments available on premise


Joining Downtown Los Angeles’ burgeoning art scene is the new contemporary art and project venue, THE SPACE by ADVOCARTSY.

The new art space is a permanent extension of ADVOCARTSY’s Art Brief exhibition series launched in 2015, a contemporary fine arts platform that aims to raise awareness of and engagement with Iranian contemporary art. ADVOCARTSY will use THE SPACE to host diverse fine art events, educational programs and exhibitions, with a wide range of collaborations, both nationally and internationally as a nexus for artists, critics, curators, and collectors.

The 1,800-square-foot-space is ideally situated in the heart of Downtown LA’s Fashion District, minutes from the rapidly expanding arts district and LA’s newest museum, the Institute of Contemporary Art, Los Angeles.

The venue was born out of necessity. “I needed a physical location to sustain the energy from the Art Brief series and to continue the engagement between Iranian contemporary art and the art community,” says ADVOCARTSY founder, Roshi Rahnama.

THE SPACE’s inaugural exhibition features the work of artist Shadi Yousefian. “I chose Shadi for the opening exhibition because of her expansive body of work directly dealing with cultural identity and the immigrant experience,” says Rahnama. “Her intimate combination of personal experience with social and political issues results in a skillfully confrontational energy while utilizing minimalism, photography, and collage as a way to mediate that encounter.”

Born in Tehran, Yousefian moved to the U.S. as a teenager. “My work has always been informed by a duality that I’ve experienced as an immigrant living in the United States,” says Yousefian. “I feel like I’m being pushed into the realm of ‘the Other’ despite the fact that I’m a citizen and I feel like my work becomes more universal and less personal, speaking for several communities and not just Iranian-Americans.”

The exhibition spans 15 years, going from her early photographic work to mixed media constructions, and includes new work being exhibited for the first time. In the show will be Yousefian’s Universal Identity Series (2006)She photographed nude portraits of a diverse array of people, cut and distorted the negatives and reassembled them, printing the composite portraits lifesize on canvas. The result is an examination of the fluidity of identity—and how it is colored by the viewer’s perspective and assumptions.

In her series Letters (2006–2017) Yousefian uses decades-old letters from friends and family in Iran. Handwritten in a pre-Internet world, the letters have been transformed from a personal archive under the artist’s bed to a distillation of feelings and specific times. By cutting the letters up and mounting them on wood, she at once destroys and preserves the documents, and gives viewers an intimate look into the immigrant experience.

What emerges is a perpetually fragmented identity of the outsider, conjured through the depiction of nostalgic tales of loss, sadness, and redemption.


General information:

Exhibition dates: Oct. 8–22, 2017

Hours: Tuesday–Saturday, 11 a.m. to 6 p.m.

Address: 924 S. San Pedro St., Los Angeles, CA, 90015

Parking: Available on premise

Future events at THE SPACE include a solo exhibition of Sepideh Salehi’s photography, abstract works and video in December and a solo exhibition of Pouya Afshar’s installations and moving imagery in January.



ADVOCARTSY is a collaborative fine arts platform that addresses and engages with Iranian

Contemporary Arts both nationally and internationally. Roshi Rahnama is the founder, principal and

director of ADVOCARTSYTHE SPACE by ADVOCARTSY produces diverse art events, projects

and exhibitions with artists, curators and galleries to further awareness and community engagement.

Facebook at:

Instagram: @Advocartsy

for additional information please contact

for press inquires please contact


the-space-logo-png924 S. San Pedro St. | Los Angeles | CA | 90015

Collecting Modern and Contemporary Middle East Art

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On Tuesday, June 6, 2017, a panel discussion on Collecting Modern and Contemporary Middle East Art took place at the Los Angeles County Museum of Art, LACMA.

Panelists included:

Linda Komaroff
Curator and Dept. Head, Art of the Middle East, LACMA

Houman M. Sarshar, Ph.D.
Founder, the Kimia Foundation & Los Angeles-based collector, Iranian art

Roxane Zand
Deputy Chairman, Middle East and Gulf Region, Sotheby’s

Rebecca Morse
Associate Curator, Wallace Annenberg Photography Dept., LACMA


Collecting Modern and Contemporary Middle East Art” was organized through the efforts of Art of the Middle East: Contemporary, LACMA, ADVOCARTSY, and Sotheby’s.

Thank you to our exceptional panelists who by their time, effort, presence and expertise made this panel discussion possible. We also thank our dear friends, who with their interest in this program, and attendance supported our efforts.

We are thrilled to share with you a recorded session of the panel and images below.

Listen below


Image Gallery


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ADVOCARTSY presents its third installation of a multi-artist show entitled



Closing Reception: ART TALK


Saturday, February 18, 2017

3PM – 5PM


Panelists Include:

Dr. Homa Mahmoudi, PhD, Clinical Psychologist and

Sandra Williams, Assistant Curator of Art of the Middle East Department at LACMA Moderated by Roshi Rahnama, Founder & Principal of ADVOCARTSY

Arena 1 Gallery, Santa Monica

 for more information:


By Events
ADVOCARTSY presents its third installation of a multi-artist show entitled



Thursday, February 9, 2017

7pm – 10pm


Exhibiting Artists Include: Afsoon, Gohar Dashti, Amir H. Fallah, Firouz Farman-Farmaian, Shadi Ghadirian, Simin Keramati, Farzad Kohan, Tahmineh Monzavi, Dana Nehdaran, Hadi Salehi, Sepideh Salehi, Shilla Shakoori, Kamran Taherimoghaddam, and Shadi Yousefian.

Curatorial Context by Sandra Williams, Assistant Curator in the Art of the Middle East Department at the Los Angeles County Museum of Art

Socio-cultural Context by Dr. Homa Mahmoudi, PhD. Clinical Psychologist

Closing Reception: ART TALK


Saturday, February 18, 2017

3PM – 5PM

Panelists Include:

Dr. Homa Mahmoudi, PhD, Clinical Psychologist


Sandra Williams, Assistant Curator of Art of the Middle East Department at LACMA

Moderated by Roshi Rahnama, Founder & Principal of ADVOCARTSY

Arena 1 Gallery, Santa Monica

Exhibition Hours:

Friday, February 10th – Saturday, February 18th, 2017

Daily from 11am to 5pm

For private or group tours by appointment:

contact us at


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On Sunday, October 16th, ADVOCARTSY launched its newest endeavor, THE SPACE, with a VIP Open House reception for community members and ADVOCARTSY supporters who gathered with featured artists for an up-close and personal viewing of showcased artworks.

THE SPACE is an art and project space which intends to expand the promotional efforts of ADVOCARTSY’s ART BRIEF series, offering exclusive viewings to galleries, curators, industry insiders and collectors, and will host various projects furthering ADVOCARTSY’s mission. Viewing are scheduled by appointment.

THE SPACE will feature works by a wide range of contemporary artists of Iranian origin, based worldwide, includuing artists showcased in ADVOCARTSY’s ART BRIEF series. The ADVOCARTSY artist collective features sculptural works, paintings and photographs. Showcased artists include: Samira Abbassy, Bruce Dadpour, Ala Ebtekar, Aida Izadpanah, Simin Keramati, Farzad Kohan, Dana Nehdaran, Dariush Nehdaran, Marjam Oskoui, Hadi Salehi, Rebecca Setareh, Shilla Shakoori, Kambiz Sharif, Kamran Sharif, and Shadi Yousefian.

Here is a short clip of our VIP Reception for your viewing pleasure: