SICA, Global Austin, Honored for Welcoming Week and Peace Day Austin 9/21/15

A collaborative initiative that grew out of SICA's Poems for Peace, Peace Day Austin invited us all to explore, express, share, and celebrate what peace means to each of us as we traveled from 9/1l, a Day of Remembrance and Service, to 9/21, the United Nations International Day of Peace. 

The press conference and reception at Austin City Hall on September 21, 2015 marked the City of Austin's first official recognition of and participation in International Peace Day and Welcoming Week whic honored the contributions of Austin's international and immigrant communities. 

Austin's Mayor Steve Adler addresses the crowd (above left)  while US Congressman Lloyd Doggett, Consul General Adrian Farrell of Ireland, Consul General Carlos González Gutiérrez of Mexico, and Angela-Jo Touza-Medina of City of Austin's Immigrant Services look on. Angelo-Jo spearheaded the "Austin: Welcoming City"​ Initiative. Akins HS Choir and Conspirare Youth Choir in background. Latifah Taormina of SICA on right.

The City of Austin also awarded SICA and GlobalAustin a  proclamation honoring Peace Day Austin and Welcoming Week at the outset of our celebrations. The UN's 2015 Peace Day theme — "Partnerships for Peace - Dignity for All" — very much inspired and energized our collaboration. Austin Mayor ProTem, Kathy Tovo with Latifah Taormina of SICA, Margie Kidd of Global Austin and the proclamation are pictured left. More information on our Peace Day Austin website. More photos on Peace Day Austin Facebook page.

SICA’s Poems for Peace, which inspired Peace Day Austin, was also celebrated in Austin as well as other US cities and garnered proclamations in Santa Fe, New Mexico and Los Angeles. The Los Angeles event, curated by Lael Belove and YES Innerprizes,  looks like it will lead to a wider celebration of Peace Day next year. SICA Italy also hosted some very beautiful Poems for Peace programs, and there was another Poems for Peace event in Santiago. More on SICA's Facebook page.

Julian Bell's "Genesis, Paintings After the Book of Beginnings" featured in major

exhibition, 20 June - 5 July, at St. Anne's Galleries for Contemporary Art, Sussex

Let There Be Light
Oil on Panel
793 x 360

The High Hills Were Covered
Oil on Panel
793 x 360

Text and catalogue below from St. Anne's site:
A major new exhibition by artist Julian Bell, Genesis, takes place at St. Anne's Galleries, Lewes. UK, this summer. Bell began work on the exhibition 18 months ago after re-reading the Bible's opening book for the first time since his youth. The initial series of drawings were burnt in a catastrophic fire in March 2014 that destroyed his studio and all its contents. This is Bell's first major project since the fire.

He describes what initially drew him to the subject: "Genesis is about stories that are steeped in a great weight of human
experience. They're about what there was in the world, back in the Stone Age and the Bronze Age, and in fact about what there very largely still is - the relationships that humans have with each other and the relationships that they have with God and the environment. So to me, Genesis is absolutely full ofsubstance. It points me to things that are enduring and strongly typical in many, many human lives. That's why, to me it is the best of subhjects.

Julian Bell (b. 1952) is the son of art historian and author Quentin Bell, the grandson of artist Vanessa Bell and the great-nephew of author Virginia Woolf. Julian Bell grew up in Newcastle and Leeds, spending summers at the historic Bloomsbury house Charleston in Sussex, and then read English Literature at Magdalen College, Oxford. He has worked as a painter since his twenties. His work, often exhibited in London and New York, is held in collections including Museum of London and The Fine Art Collection of Brighton and Hove Museums. As well as an artist, Julian is a successful art writer and historian. 2015 sees the publication of two new books, Vincent Van Gogh: A Power Seething (already out in the States, where it has received highly positive reviews) and a Lund Humphries volume about artist Tom Hammick. He is also working with the BBC on a big art history series intended as a 21st-century rethink of Kenneth Clark's famous Civilisation. Julian Bell lives and works in Lewes, East Sussex





Dharma Trading Founder, Isaac Goff, Announces Exciting New MIlestone Reached

by Dharma Children's Heart Repair

An "epiphany" led to Isaac Goff establishing Dharma Trading Co. in 1969. Vision, hard work and a commitment to ethical business practice has led Dharma to become a leading supplier for fiber artists and artisans the world over. But that's not all they do.

For some years now, Dharma has been doing social projects — including funding open heart surgeries for children from poor and indigenous families in Bolivia. Earlier this year,
Dharma's Children's Heart Repair completed its 100th successful open heart surgery. And on March 26, 2015, at 9:30 am, the first public hospital pediatric cardiac surgery ever in Bolivia was successfully performed on a 5 and a half month-old baby.   More about Dharma Social Projects.   
More about that "epiphany."

Writer-Director Matthew Cooke Attracts Major Talent and Support for

Groundbreaking New Docuseries that Focus on Key Issues Challenging America 


The first documentary in the series, A SURVIVOR'S GUIDE TO PRISON
is executive produced by Susan Sarandon, Adrian Grenier, Mike de la Rocha, and Bryn Mooser, and produced by Steve DeVore and Saturday Entertainment. The project also features singer Harry Belafonte, activist Aqeela Sherrills, and exoneree Jeff Deskovic. The film centers on the case of Bruce Lisker, who was wrongfully convicted of murdering his mother and served 26 years in prison before being exonerated in 2009.  More 

Like Isaac, Matthew also works from his own deep inner commitment and passion — as well as compassion.  

After working through the HOW TO SURVIVE format," blogs Matthew, "we’ll endeavor to always end describing HOW TO THRIVE."  More.


Michael Menduno Hosts Tek Talk 

at OZTeK 2015 in Sydney

A major international event that highlights the adventure and excitement inherent in really deep sea diving, OZTeK -- the Australian Diving Technologies Conference and Exhibition -- plays a key role in creating broad awareness of new techniques and technologies which transform and push back the boundaries of underwater knowledge. And why is Michael Menduno a key speaker at OzTek 2015 in Sydney? Because he had a lot to do with starting all this.

Michael started diving back in the 70s. In 80s and 90s he started aquaCorpsMagazine. This was a very exciting time for divers, and aquaCorps greatly influenced the technical diving revolution. WIRED called the magazine "The Sea Geek's Bible." And "if you ever wanted confirmation of this," X-Ray Magazine says, "just talk to pretty much any technical diver of note today. They all agree on one thing — the publication that greatly influenced their personal diving was aquaCorps." In 2013, Menduno was given a Lifetime Achievement Award for all this. Oh yes....he also coined the term, "technical diving."

aquaCorps is no longer, but each issue is a now a collector's item, and Menduno is legend. So yes, he is a coveted speaker and guest at such conferences. M2, as he is called by his deep sea colleagues, is off to Singapore in April for the 2015 tekDive Conference, which is celebrating its 20th anniversary since its founding in 1995, by Menduno and Asian Diver. Once again he will be hosting a talk show and speaking about the “Future of Helium,” an essential gas in deep diving.

In Sydney, Menduno's tshow featured three of the preeminent “tekkies” on the planet: Dr. Simon Mitchell, head of the Anaesthesiology Dept. at Auckland University, New Zealand, Brit Martin Parker, Managing Director of AP Diving—The Henry Ford of Rebreathers—and filmmaker & environmental activist Laura James from Seattle, Washington. 

So what is "technical diving?

As Michael puts it, "Think of tech diving as extreme, high-tech recreational diving where enthusiasts breathe exotic, helium-based gas mixtures through electronic life support systems called 'rebreathers,' and wear heads-up computer displays, propel themselves through the water with torpedo-shaped, battery-powered diver propulsion vehicles, and wear sealed exposure suits equipped with electrically-heated undergarments and outboard “pee” valves to relieve themselves on dives to depths of more than 650 feet/200 meters that can last up to 12 hours.

The 63-year writer and technologist learned to dive in 1976 after moving to Northern California to attend graduate School in engineering and mathematics at Stanford University. While in route to California with his wife and 3-year old daughter, he had a dream in which Bapak asked him what he was doing? He replied he was going to engineering school, and Bapak just started laughing saying, “You’re not an engineer,” before walking away. Michael chased after him in the dream pleading, “But Bapak, what should I do?” While at Stanford, Michael, who had been fascinated with diving since watching Jacques Cousteau and “Sea Hunt” as a kid, spent two semesters at Stanford’s Hopkins Marine Station in Pacific Grove where he learned to dive.

After completing his Masters degrees in Engineering Economic Systems and Mathematics, Michael went to work in Washington D.C. as a technology staffer to U.S. Senator Ted Stevens of Alaska. He later moved back to Silicon Valley and worked in strategic planning and marketing for several high-tech companies before starting Menduno Associates Inc., his own strategic marketing consulting company.

Five years later, after going out of business following a divorce, Michael “received” to become a writer, and got back into diving and starting writing about the sea. Some called it a midlife crisis. At that time, in the mid-to-late eighties, when the “personal computer” (PC) was just starting to gain attention, a few well-healed sport divers were beginning to experiment and adapt commercial and military diving technologies to enable them to dive deeper and stay underwater longer.

As a technologist, Michael quickly recognized what was happening, and dubbed it “The PC Revolution of Diving.” A year later he took the plunge and started aquaCORPS, which helped define and usher in the emerging field of technical diving.
In addition to writing about business and technology, Michael still writes about the undersea world for a variety of publications, in addition to lecturing at conferences. And he relaxes with his bass guitar.

They closed the show in Sydney with the premier appearance of "The Ozteks, " a classic rock band made up of "tech divers" — with M2 on bass.




Patricia Arquette Wins Best Supporting Actress 

Oscar for Her Work in Richard Linklater's

Groundbreaking Film, "Boyhood."


After winning the Screen Actors Guild Award, a Golden Globe, and UK's BAFTA Award,for her role in "Boyhood," she won the Academy Award.  When she heard she'd been nominated for an Oscar -- it took a while for her to register that she really had been nominated. reports that she even Googled her Oscar Nomination to make sure!

Arquette spent 12 years making "Boyhood." Richard Linklater's film tells the story of a young boy named Mason (Ellar Coltrane) who grows up during the 2000s. Arquette plays Mason's mother, and, says Hufflington Post, " has a surfeit of knockout scenes, including one before Mason goes to college. 'I just thought there would be more, she says."

In her acceptance speech for her first award, the Golden Globe, she thanked her co-stars Ethan Hawke, Ellar Coltrane and then said to director Richard Linklater, "You placed in my hands the part of Olivia, an under-appreciated single mother," she said. "Thank you for shining a light on this woman and the millions of women like her and for allowing me to honor my own mother with this beautiful character."

Her mother was long term poet, activist, and advocate for the rights of others, Mardi Arquette. Mardi was one of the first to campaign to help AIDS victimes — when we were all first learning of AIDS — and one of the first to campaign against homophobia. She was also Chair of Subud California and in that capacity freed the California Subud Centers that were locked into mortgaging their houses to support some of the large enterprises of the time. She also pioneered support for The Quest Center for Integrative Health in  Portland. Lastly, she worked with and inspiredJerry Chalem to start making all those video interviews with early members of Subud. More on Mardi here.

Like mother like daughter.  Little wonder that her Oscar speech made headlines for demanding equal pay for women.  "It’s our time to have wage equality once and for all and equal rights for women in the United States of America!" she proclaimed. It was the Oscars moment that caused Meryl Streep to jump out of her seat, jab her finger in the air, and scream, “YES!” over and over again.

Writes the Daily Beast:
First Arquette thanked her fellow nominees, the cast and crew of the 12-year project Boyhood, and her friends and family, “who all work so hard to make this world a better place.”

"Then she brought the house down.

“To every woman who gave birth, to every taxpayer and citizen of this nation, we have fought for everybody else’s equal rights,” shouted a fiery Arquette. “It’s our time to have wage equality once and for all and equal rights for women in the United States of America!”

The entire place—Streep and seatmate Jennifer Lopez included—rose to their feet for the night’s biggest standing ovation.

A few days after Patricia received her Golden Globe Award, her brother Richmond shared his own moving tribute to his sister on Facebook - who she really is. Read it here. 


Farrah Karapetian's "Stagecraft," her Solo Exhitibition               

at Von Lintel Gallery, Los Angeles, California from

17 January - 28 February 2015, wins raves from 

Los AngelesTimes art critic:


"Beautiful, conceptually ticklish photograms by Farrah Karapetian" is the headline of Leah Ollman's review in the L.A. Times on February 13, 2015

"Farrah Karapetian's luscious, provocative work," the review begins, "at Von Lintel marries two traditions in photography — that of the staged picture and of the image made without a camera.

"Both have been around since the medium's earliest years, and both remain vital, thanks, in part, to a wave of contemporary practitioners who have broken down photography into its most basic components and reconfigured it anew according to their own particular sensibilities, freely adding, subtracting, tweaking and torquing along the way.

"Now is an invigorating moment for the medium, and Karapetian's work shows us why.  

"Her images speak in questions, equally addressing eye and mind. Photograms in saturated emerald, aqua and gold on matte or metallic paper, they elicit an immediate how? and what? They are as physically beautiful as they are conceptually ticklish. . . ."

Click here for Leah Ollman's full review  or download it as a pdf here.

Von Lintel, in announcing the exhbitiion pointed out that Karapetian's "Stagecraft" is the artist's first solo show with the gallery and is completely an exhibiton of new works that "challenges the stabiltiy of the photographic image through analogy with staged musical performance and sound.

"In this body of work," Von Lintel says, "Karapetian isolates and escalates her investigation of the abstract potential of photography. Just as the production elements of stagecraft underwrite the illusion of theater, photography is the result of multiple acts of fabrication. The photogram can deconstruct photography into its constituent parts - object, photographic paper, light source - but how then an artist pushes these parts defines the artist's concerns. The object in Karapetian’s practice is often a “constructed negative” – transparent in either material (cymbals cast in glass) or form (the armature of a drum kit) – fabricated by the artist and exhibited as sculpture, challenging the notion that a negative is merely a means to an end.

"The title of the exhibition also points to the parallels between stage performance and the performative nature of Karapetian’s methods: subjects are invited into the darkroom to reenact postures of music-making and works are installed to interplay in real space as might the components of a band, highlighting the ability of a photograph to both describe and occupy space. Usually the photogram makes a very flat space, a silhouette against a field of color, but Karapetian is interested here in persuading movement and volume from the picture plane. In this setting, the rhythms of object and shadow on paper translate into wavelengths of musical sound; reflection easily interpreted as reverberation. Description aside, much like attending a concert, experiencing Karapetian’s work is best done live.

"Karapetian was born in Marin, CA, in 1978. She received a BA from Yale and an MFA from the University of California Los Angeles. Recent exhibitions include the Armory Center for the Arts in Pasadena, CA; the Torrance Art Museum in Torrance, CA; the UCR/California Museum of Photography in Riverside, CA; the Orange County Museum of Art; and the Vincent Price Art Museum in Monterey Park, CA. Recent grants include the California Community Foundation Mid-Career Artist Fellowship and the Artswriters grant from the Warhol Foundation."


Architect Antoine Predock's

Latest Project, The Canadian

Museum of Human Rights

World-class architect Antoine Predock has done
it again! Always able to somehow grasp and
express the very essence of place — its culture,
ts landscape, its life-blood — in his work, he writes of his latest project situated 
in Winnepeg, Manitoba, Canada:

"The Canadian Museum for Human Rights is rooted in humanity, making visible in the architecture the fundamental commonality of humankind -- a symbolic apparition of ice, clouds and stone set in a field of sweet grass. Carved into the earth and dissolving into the sky on the Winnipeg horizon, the abstract ephemeral wings of a white dove embrace a mythic stone mountain of 450 million year old Tyndall limestone in the creation of a unifying and timeless landmark for all nations and cultures of the world."The Canadian Museum for Human Rights is rooted in humanity, making visible in the architecture the fundamental commonality of humankind-a symbolic apparition of ice, clouds and stone set in a field of sweet grass. Carved into the earth and dissolving into the sky on the Winnipeg horizon, the abstract ephemeral wings of a white dove embrace a mythic stone mountain of 450 million year old Tyndall limestone in the creation of a unifying and timeless landmark for all nations and cultures of the world.

"The Journey through the museum parallels an epic journey through life. Visitors enter the museum between the Roots, protective stone arms suggestive of an ancient geological event. Clutching the earth, the roots are calibrated to block northern and northwestern winds and celebrate the sun, with apertures marking paths of equinox and solstice. Containing the essential public interface functions of the museum, the Roots create a framework for ceremonial outdoor events with roof terraces and amphitheater seating.

The journey begins with a descent into the earth, a symbolic recognition of the earth as the spiritual center for many indigenous cultures. Arriving at the heart of the building, the Great Hall. Carved from the earth, the archaeologically rich void of the Great Hall evokes the memory of ancient gatherings at the Forks of First Nations peoples, and later, settlers and immigrants.

Like a mirage within the Museum, the Garden of Contemplation is Winnipeg’s Winter Garden. Basalt columns emerge from the top surface of the timeless granite monolith. Water and medicinal plants define space and suggest content. The First Nations sacred relationship to water is honored, as a place of healing and solace amidst reflections of earth and sky. The space of the Garden functions as a purifying “lung” reinforcing the fundamental environmental ethic, which grounds the building.

"The journey culminates in an ascent of the Tower of Hope, with controlled view release to panoramic views of sky, city and the natural realm. Glacial in its timelessness, the Tower of Hope is a beacon for humanity. Symbolic of changes in the physical state of water, material and form, it speaks to the life affirming hope for positive changes in humanity. An allusion to the vaporous state of water, the Cloud, houses the functional support of the Museum. With strong overlaps to the visitor experience, the cloud is envisioned as light filled and buoyant, in marked contrast to the geologic evocation of the Roots and Stone Galleries, providing a visible reminder from the exterior, in tandem with the Tower, of the power and necessity of hope and tolerance."

He adds that people always ask him which project is his favorite.  His reply: "This one!"

The above article is also featured in the Subud World News as are the articles about Pur:Pur and Alinah Azadeh below.



Rebekka writes from the Ukraine

In Kharkiv (Ukraine) we have a young Subud man who is talented and skilled in many areas of creativity. His name is Jenia (Eugeniy) Zhebko and some years ago he created an original music group — PUR:PUR. The vocalist, Natasha Smirina, is also in Subud. The group has already gained popularity all over the Ukraine as well as in neighbouring countries such as Lithuania, Russia and Georgia.

In addition to performing at numerous jazz festivals and other musical events, they are involved in social endeavours, such as performing for children with incurable illnesses, or for children in orphanages, and similar.

Although the economical and social situation in our country still is dismal and uncertain for most of people, the group is full of interesting creative plans; one of them is to play their musical and vocal pieces with a symphony orchestra, and it seems that this project will come about in November or December. In the meantime, here is a promo video:



Alinah Azadeh:

Parliament in the Making and More

Extracts from Alinah Azadeh's newsletter recently published in Subud World News:

"I am one of nine artists producing two artworks for printed Banner works in Westminster Hall as part of the 2015: Parliament in the Making Arts and Cultural programme. It marks the anniversaries of the Magna Carta (800 years) and the De Montfort Parliament (750 years), which will be launched on January 20th 2015 for a year.

Child's Play, was a suspended installation I created for Asia Triennial Manchester 2014, (Sept 26 - Nov 21st) conjuring the parallel worlds we all inhabit, of both innocence and potential violence, either real or imagined. Most of the objects used were child's toys or could be used to 'play at war' - from weapons and soldiers to sticks and stones, plus objects evoking memories or experiences of conflict and displacement. They were wrapped in the green used by protesters during and since the 2009 Uprisings in Iran. Read my Blog.

(Photo of the artist at work, courtesy of Joel Chester Fildes for Asia Triennial Manchester 2014)

The Book of Debts VIII also opened at Imperial War Museum North as part of Asia Triennial Manchester 2014. It was co-recited and burned outside the Museum as the finale to ATM's Conflict, Compassion and Resolution symposium on November 21st. The Book of Debts IX is now open online for contributions and will be in residence at 198 Contemporary Arts and Learning and on the streets of Brixton, London from early February, with a finale on March 22nd, 2015.

Of further interest: Article about Alinah and Burning the Books by Laura Barnett of The Guardian



The Armed Man

a Mass for Peace


Sanderson Topham writes of his experience in Subud World News: 

The Armed Man is a Mass for Peace composed by Karl Jenkins. Within the piece is the Adhaan, the Call to Prayer, and I was asked to perform it as part of an event at The Royal Albert Hall on September 28, 2014 (photo), commemorating the centenary of the start of the First World War. The Philharmonia Orchestra, and the seven hundred young people in choirs from the United Kingdom and Europe, were conducted by Malcolm Goldring.

I had been asked to do this once before about eight years ago. Over the years I have sung Koranic Sura's at selamatans and funerals, and it was at one of these, after a Subud brother had passed away, that I was asked if I could perform in The Armed Man at Lancing College in West Sussex. This in turn led to my being asked to take part in the recent performance at the Royal Albert Hall.

Singing to a three thousand audience was indeed 
a noble and honourable experience for me, especially as the power of the latihan filled me. I did it once at the rehearsal in the morning and all the seven hundred choir plus orchestra clapped. That was moving, but when I did the actual performance my body felt weak as though I was going to maybe fall over; but the power from above just filled and passed through me. I felt highly cleansed and graced by the power of Almighty God after this. I was also touched by witnessing all those young people who sang beautifully and my being aware that none of them would ever forget the experience of this day, or what it meant. At the end I stood on the front of the stage with the four vocalists, the conductor and the composer bowing to the joyful audience.


Angel of Peace

with thanks to Subud World News, its staff writers and SICA staff.
Photo left by Mimi Machado-Luces

On August 17, 2014, on the final day of the 14th Subud World Congress, the Angel of Peace statue gifted by the WSA and SICA to Puebla and its people, was unveiled by the Govenor of the State of Puebla, Dr. Rafael Moreno Valle Rosas. Close to 100 Subud members and other visitors were present.

Depicting a 6 year-old boy angel, preparing to release the two skylarks he has in his hands behind his back, the statue was sculpted by Lithuanian Subud member and artist Viktoras Tunkevicius, and is made of bronze and granite. It is 2 meters high and weighs 800 kilos.

Our Angel of Peace is our thank you to Puebla for the kindness and generosity given to our Subud community during our 14th Subud World Congress — and our prayer for Peace in this world.

The Governor was very touched by our wish to do this and personally chose the site at the center of the Jardin del Arte, a lovely new park in the Angelopolis part of Puebla. (Puebla was originally called Puebla de los Angeles (City of Angels) as a vision of an angel led to the city being built where it is)

The Governor  was also touched by the artist's vision of a child-angel. "Children are the real guardians of peace in our world," says Viktoras, "No matter where you live in the world, when you see a child hurt, you instantly react." He chose a six year old  "because six is when you start school, when you meet the material world, when you begin to have to make choices about your values."  That the child is preparing to release the skylarks means he has chosen to live by the values of love, compassion, kindness, life.

Our Angel of Peace, as you can see, stands atop a lighted pedestal, surrounded by fountains, in a small lake. The bigchildren's hospital is just beyond the trees, and the governor says there will be walkways down so the children can enjoy the park and the statue. It's a beautiful family park with spacious lawns, gardens, walkways, and picnic areas. Ducks and swans are at home in the lake, and the "Sleeping Woman" ("Iztaccíhuatl") volcano keeps a watchful eye in the distance. Witnesses say a puff of 
white smoke came from the volcano at the exact moment of the Angel's unveiling.  The Governor hopes the Angel of Peace will become a well-loved Puebla landmark.

Puebla itself is a UN Heritage City and celebrates the UN's International Day of Peace every year. SICA, which is now preparing to celebrate Peace Day for the 3rd consecutive year with its Poems for Peace initiative, had made a call to all sculptors in Subud back in January to submit a proposal and design for a sculpture representing an Angel of Peace that could be installed in a park, and be a gift to the City of Puebla for hosting our Congress. Viktoras' submission was the one selected — by SICA and by Puebla.

The idea to do this is something that just came one day out of the blue. Really the whole idea was that we should always leave a gift to whatever city hosts our Congress, and that it would be good if we could give them an Angel of Peace. Maybe real angels of peace would come along with the statue.                                            (SWN photo above).
A little prayer for peace, and a gesture of thanks and love that we could give to others.                                                                        

A plaque that will be placed at the edge of the lake acknowledging the gift will also feature this quote from Matthew 5:9:  
"Blessed are the peacemakers, for they shall be called the children of God."


An Angel of Peace for Your Center, Your Garden,

Your Home, Your Community

Following the unvelining of our Angel of Peace in Puebla, the artist, Viktoras Tunkevicius, announced that he is able to make a limited number of smaller replicas of the original Angel of Peace (picutred right) that groups could have for their national or local centers — or that individuals could have for their gardens or homes.  It's also a way of sponsoring
the gift to Puebla 

This smaller angel is made of bronze and stone and is 50 cm in height.  The star can be engraved with a message of your choice.  Of course, the words have to fit the space
allowed. Each angel is numbered and signed by the artist and comes with papers authenticating that it is an orginal replica created by the artist.

If your are interested in sponsoring or owning a smaller Angel of Peace — US $5,000,
including shipping — please contact SICA directly.  You can contact us directly via our contact email address:  sica AT


Mahallia Ward Pollard and Frances Madden tie for $10,000 SICA Prize

Two years ago, SICA announced to the world that it would offer a $10,000 prize to a young person, age 19-28, active in Subud, who demonstrates an extraordinary TALENT in some field. (Art, Science, Education, Technology, Business, Film, Medicine, for example).

The prize, minimum $10,000, would be awarded at the Subud World Congress in Puebla.

To be considered for the prize, the individual had to submit an application through his or her national or zonal SICA organization. National or zonal SICA organizations in turn selected the nominees to go forward to the international SICA. An independent jury reviewed all nominations and selected the prize winner/s to be announced at the Subud World Congress, Puebla, Mexico, in August 2014. 

Both Mahallia and Frances submitted excellent applications, and both their home countries, easily picked them to be considered for the "big one."  Mahallia, who at aged 20 was already a featured ballerina with the world famous Joffrey Ballet, submitted a delightful video we are happy to share.  Frances, a most gifted young blues singer attracting national attention in her home country of Australia, had built a website with videos and mp3 files of her music and performances in addition to her application.  Congress attendees also got a chance to see and hear Frances perform during the "Conversations with Music" night at the Teatro and at the Closing Ceremony at Congress.  Mahallia was busy performing for the Joffrey.

As it was a tie, Frances and Mahallia split the prize money.  Each was awarded US$5,000.  The awards were announced at the Youth Bash in the large Congress hall the night of August 15, 2014.

Congratulations to our hugely talented winners.  May you all enjoy their work.

Mahallia's video  

Frances' website:

More will be featured soon in the Celebrate section of this site.



Bauer: Rowland Weinstein's Stellar

Exhibition in San Francisco Leads to a

Stellar Documentary and a Powerful

New Drama getting Rave Reviews!

"Not since "Sunday in the Park with George" have I seen a play about art and artists as fascinating and powerful as Lauren Gunderson's "Bauer,"
— Janos Gereben, San Francisco Examiner  

"Ever since he Rudolf Bauer's work at a gallery in New York in 2005," writes Emily Wilson in her San Francisco Weekly feature, "Rowland Weinstein, owner of the Weinstein Gallery on Geary, has been entranced.

"'Oh my God, it's so vibrant and colorful,' he says, pointing to a painting, 'ConRoso"hanging on the wall of his gallery. "When I look at it, it's so magnetic -- I feel like could stare at it for hours and go on a complete and total journey.'

"Weinstein started researching Bauer's life and found an amazing story that includes a love triangle, a Nazi prison camp, and tons of betrayal. After being called the greatest living artist by the New York Herald Tribune and having it hang in the Guggenheim Museum, Bauer's work fell into obscurity.

"Weinstein is determined to revive interest in him. And with an exhibit of Bauer's work at his gallery, "In the Realm of the Spirit;" a play at the SF Playhouse, "Bauer" by local hotshot Lauren Gunderson; and a documentary on PBS, 'Betrayal: The Life and Art of Rudolf Bauer,' he's doing a pretty good job."

We would agree!  Read a few of the rave reviews and articles for yourself: 

San Francisco Examiner Review            San Jose Mercury News
San Francisco Weekly Feature              The Stark Insider            
Be sure to visit the Exhibition in the Weinsein Gallery!


Rohana Laing's work featured in Center for Global Justice's conference,

, this July in San Miguel de Allende, Mexico

"Art powerfully conveys social injustices and imagines a just and equal world. It’s playful and nurtures us. It disturbs us and provokes us into action. Art engages and sustains us. It knows no boundaries and can change our lives," say the conference organizers. The art they selected for the conference is meant to enrich the conference experience and support dialogue.  

Here's what they say about Rohana"  "Rohana has retired from two careers but not from painting. Inspired by four years of international travel (expenses paid) as a council member of the Subud Spiritual Association, Rohana has chosen to spend 6 months in Mexico in order to paint subjects that she finds meaningful.

As a retired minister of the United Church of Canada, and a daughter of a Canadian socialist family, she has had a lifetime concern for the poor and working classes, the "salt of the earth". In San Miguel she finds common cause with many members of the Unitarian Fellowship. In her art, she combines her love of beautiful, colourful places with her love of ordinary/extraordinary people. 






   New EP:




DEYA, her website admits, is one of Australia’s very few self produced female electronic artists. We would say she's one the word's very few self-produced electronic artists!  Known for her shapeshifting and reinvention, what remains constant in DEYA’S music is her love of ancient songlines, cinematic soundscapes, textual organica, totemic bass, temple beats and euphoric tribalism. Some of you may have followed her dazzling performance at Burning Man in the US desert last summer — and some of you may also remember her incredible fire dancing at the Spokane Congress in the 90s. There is nothing she does part way.  It's a total commitment, and totally exciting. She hails from the Nullarbor Desert in Australia. That may explain a certain un-nameable mysticism and electricity that she brings to her music and her performances.

Online description of this digital release: "A Midtempo Shamanic Journey Infusing Ancient Songlines, Totemic Bass, Cinematic Soundscapes & Textural Organica with Mythic Temple Vibe & Transcendental Tribalism." 


Alexandra Woodward Organizes for Action!

Almost everyone knows that SICA holds the development and expression of individual talent high on its list of priorities.  But too often when we speak of "talent," we are thinking people in the arts.  They are the creative ones, we tell ourselves.  

Well who says talent and creativity are exclusive to artists? Our talents are the gifts we have inside ourselves.  Yes, Alexandra has a talent for acting and theater — but she also has a fantastic talent for ORGANIZING and communicating!  And she is extremely creative in her use of  those talents — as her work for SYA and SDIA has shown.  And now she is the nationwide Digital Program Director for Organizing for Action in the US.  

"Organizing for Action," Alex explains on her Linked In page, "is a non-partisan 501(c)4 created to work in support of the platform Americans voted for in November 2012. As a digital organizer, I work with volunteers on the ground throughout the United States to amplify their personal stories and broadcast their grassroots events via online tools. We run campaigns that aim to increase accountability in Washington and drive them to act on issues such as women's rights, gun violence prevention, comprehensive immigration reform, climate change legislation, minimum wage, and marriage equality."  

Click here to read her blog entry for OFA honoring the victims of the Newtown school shooting last year.



Artist Alinah Azadeh has been

awarded touring support by 

Arts Council England) for her 

exciting Burning the Books project

Text below from
her Burning Books Project website:

We all owe someone something

Burning the Books is a project by artist Alinah Azadeh in collaboration with debtors and creditors everywhere. It offers a moment to reflect on and engage in a dialogue about debt other than the one you may think is on offer. It questions the relationship between measurable, financial debt and other forms such as emotional, psychic, ecological and social debt.

Azadeh acts as debt/story collector and servant to The Book of Debts — one volume per location — which will be intermittently filled, recited and burned in public acts of ‘absolution’ across the UK and beyond.  Here's a video from one of these events:

Burning The Books (II) from Alinah Azadeh on Vimeo.

Burning the Books plans to roam nationally and beyond over the next two years. To find out more about how the project evolved and where it might be headed, read the artists blog. (And follow her on Facebook.  Her work is so alive! — ed

>> Click here to read all about Alinah's NEW exhibition, "The Gifts of the Departed,"  — and what led to this work — in the current issue of Celebrate on this site:  (Visual Arts & Design sub-section.)  Most inspiring!!!!!!!!


Patricia Shone in select group of Scottish Makers

to exhibit at SOFA (Sculpture Objects Functional

Art + Design) Chicago, November 2013

"I have been potting on the Isle of Skye since 1998," she writes from her blog, " from a studio with wide views across the sea to mainland Scotland. After years of hand building and raku firing, I am now woodfiring too and wishing I had discovered it years ago." 

On her website she speaks of the influence of her surroundings:  "I have found that, unintentionally this powerful land influences my work. The inherent textures of clay as it is stressed and manipulated reflect the textures of formation and erosion in the hills and the subtle traces of the communities who worked the land; overgrown paths disappearing into the heather; grassy mounds in the middle of a forest, where a house or a byre stood; remnants of roads bypassed.

"I use combinations of hand building and throwing to make my pots and to develop the textures. I have used a variety of firing methods; from low temperature raku to oxidised earthenware and and am now firing a small wood fueled kiln to stoneware temperatures with locally grown timber. As well as the thrill of learning challenging new techniques this is bringing my work closer to its source, the land and how we live upon it. I am influenced by my environment, by the communities and culture of the place and by the traces individuals leave upon the landscape.

"There seem to be two elements recurring in my work as a result of living on the Isle of Skye - monumental mass and intimate detail; like taking a stone in my hands and feeling the form and weight of the mountain in it. The processes involved in turning the raw clay into ceramic reflect huge elemental forces, and yet the product can be as simple as a dish passed from hand to hand.

"Some of the work is for use with food, some is contemplative, some hangs on the wall. "

Feast on more of her work  on her facebook page, her website, and her blog.


Juan Diego Flórez makes Sinfini Music's list of Top Ten

 in all history!

He's now on the list with Enrico Caruso, Luciano Pavarotti, Placido Domingo, Jussi Bjorling, and others.  "There has never been a recorded tenor with such a secure high sound, glistening timbre or fearsome talent for rat-a-tat coloratura as the Peruvian tenor Juan Diego Flórez. These gifts have even had an effect on lyric repertoire, and now operas that were previously considered too difficult to sing have come back onto stages again. It hasn’t hurt his career that he’s slim and pleasingly photogenic." —

Just l1th of August, he debuted the role of Arnold in Guillaume Tell during the 34th edtion of the Rossini Opera Festival in Pesaro — to wide acclaim of audience and critics.  

“Un Guglielmo Tell memorabile per il Rossini Opera Festival - Juan Diego Flórez è andato incontro al solito trionfo nella difficilissima parte di Arnold.” —

 La Stampa

His performance as Arnold was almostt 17 years to the day since he debuted for the first time at the ROF.

And of course, he is now the Pride of Peru — and  of papa, Ruben Flórez.
Visit Juan Diego's website for more -- and to listen to some of his music.  He IS fantastico!!


"This is Martin Bonner" with Paul Eenhoom and Richmond Arquette a winner!


" 'This Is Martin Bonner,' wonderfully acted and something of a minimalist masterpiece, is a striking, moving ode to lives lived day to day, even hour to hour, in which the smallest gesture has the power to make one hopeful for the next, like a small fire gently stoked." — Los Angels Times.

"From the well-observed dialogue to the lived-in feeling that permeates throughout, everything about the film rings authentic and true, not least the outstanding, trophy-worthy turns from dual leads Paul Eenhoorn and Richmond Arquette."
— Steven Carty, Flixcapacitor, UK




Peter Mark Richman's play, Medal for Murray, a hit in Tel Aviv.

Actor, Director, Author, Painter, and Playwright Peter Mark Richman just returned from Israel where his latest play, Medal for Murray, had its world premiere at Tel Aviv's Beit Lessin Theater.  The play was especially translated into Hebrew for the production, and Miriam Zohar, one of Israel's well-loved leading actresses, starred. Peter Mark flew there just prior to the opening to visit with the actors, answer questions, be available for interviews — and of course, attend the opening.  He's back in Los Angeles and tells us the trip was wonderful and the play is a hit.  (He also tells us that his name is under the title of the program right.)

Most people know Peter Mark for his roles in the classic television hits, Twilight Zone, Dynasty and Three’s Company. But Peter Mark has a long string of successes on stage, in film, on TV — and in galleries.  (This writer remembers his stellar performance years ago as Jerry in the off Broadway production of Edward Albee's Zoo Story.)

Here's a snippit on Israeli TV about Richman's visit there.  And here's a very nice interview with Richman, the actor, done a while back.

NEWS FLASH! December 2013:  A NEW article about Richman's play just came out.  Click here to enjoy it!


Rusdi Genest Inducted into Royal Canadian Academy of Arts


Rusdi Genest, long time Subud member of Montreal, Quebec (50 years) was inducted into the very prestigious Royal Canadian Academy of Arts (RCA) this June 2013.

This Society was established by Queen Victoria of England in 1880 and has 700 plus Canadian artist members of renown (deceased and living). Each proposed member must be presented by five other RCA members, and his portfolio is submitted to a twelve person jury of RCA members, architects, designers, sculptors, painters, etc. to then be approved by their board of governors. It is no small feat to be admitted into the RCA!

Rusdi’s biography is long and his successes are numerous.
To view his artwork, techniques, biography and other activities visit his website or, as he says,  ‘Google him.'

His work is in collections all over the world including the National Library and the National Archives of Canada. Here is a man with stories to tell experiences to share, and philosophies to guide the creative endeavours of others.
                                                      Rusdi Accepting Award Top;  One of Rusdi's works on display at the Award Ceremony, Right.

Download full story of Rusdi's amazing journey to this moment here.

Matthew Cooke's Provocative Documentary Has Everybody Talking

Arianna Huffington of Huffington Post Calls It

She writes on 19 June 2013:

"The biggest movie of the summer isn't Man of Steel, or The Lone Ranger, or Fast & Furious 6. It's a new documentary called How to Make Money Selling Drugs, which will be released in theaters and on demand on June 26.

"Now, when I say "biggest," I'm not talking about budget size or box office receipts -- I'm talking impact and importance. Written and directed by Matthew Cooke, and produced by Bert Marcus and Adrian Grenier, How to Make Money Selling Drugs exposes the hypocrisy, insanity and destructiveness of America's drug war. Of course, the problem with saying a movie is "important" is that it can leave the impression that it isn't entertaining. That's certainly not the case with this film. Indeed, Cooke's goal is, as he put it, borrowing from Malcolm X, to bring about change "by the most entertaining means necessary." Or, as Hamlet said, "The play is the thing wherein I'll catch the conscience of the king." Or, in this case, the conscience of the public, which will in turn hopefully catch the conscience of the king -- aka our leaders.

"The movie is loosely structured as a satirical how-to, showing how easy it is to make a ton of money as a player in America's war on drugs. And though the film mainly focuses on the stories of former drug dealers, along the way it lays bare the complicity of law enforcement, our justice system, and our political system. It also features interviews with, among others, Susan Sarandon, 50 Cent, The Wire creator David Simon, HuffPost senior writer Radley Balko, and Russell Simmons. (And, full disclosure, a cameo by me.)

"But the reason the film truly feels like a blockbuster is that you can't leave the theater without being shocked and outraged by what you've seen. Even if you go in feeling like you're well-versed in the insanity of the drug war, you'll walk out stunned. That's what happened to me. I've been passionate about this issue for years. In fact, the injustice of the war on drugs has been one of The Huffington Post's core issues since its founding. It's also why this week we've been running a dedicated series of blog posts in conjunction with the movie's release. . ."  Read Her Full Article Here.

Farrah Karapetian Exhibits at Prestigious L.A. Louver Gallery

"rogue wave '13", 18 July - 23 August 2013
IMAGES TAKEN AT Reception for the artists
Thursday, 18 July, 6-9 pm 

L.A. Louver's "Rogue Wave 13" is a group show featuring 15 Los Angeles artists whose work encapsulates the vibrancy and excitement of art being made in Los Angeles today. Co-curated by the gallery’s Chief Preparator Christopher Pate and Founding Director Peter Goulds, this is the fifth group exhibition in L.A Louver’s ongoing Rogue Wave program. Painting, drawing, photography and installation will be on view throughout L.A. Louver’s first and second floor galleries, Skyroom and exterior spaces.

Merging sculpture and photography, Farrah Karapetian stages elaborate, life-sized photograms that ghostly silhouette soldiers in the midst of combat, accompanied with a display of military weaponry cast in resin. (see below)

Rogue Wave was initiated in 2001 as a group survey exhibition examining Los Angeles-based artists, with additional editions presented in 2005, 2007 and 2009. Following this cycle, L.A. Louver launched Rogue Wave Projects, resulting in solo exhibitions with Eduardo Sarabia (2009), Olga Koumoundouros (2010) and Matt Wedel (2010). At the start of 2013, we undertook our first international Rogue Wave Projects exhibition with Australian new media artist Grant Stevens. L.A. Louver’s next international project will feature work by Beijing-based photographer and artist Chen Man, in January 2014.

(Text courtesy of LA Louver Press Release).
Farrah, top, at opening reception


Dahlan Robert Foah Presents Work at US State Department Special Event

From piece by bSuzanne Pollack, Staff Writer for washington jewish week, june 27, 2013, and email from Dahlan.

On June 18, the U.S. State Department held a two-hour multimedia program entitled Lost Music of the Holocaust, featuring a performance of what is believed to be the U.S. premiere of a piano piece written by leon Kaczmarek while he was imprisoned in Dachau.  The piece was performed by 17-year-old Nicholas Biniaz-Harris, the grandson and great-grandson of a Schindler's List survivor.  

Dahlan and Honora Foah, were invited guest at the event, and Dahlan, Director and Co-Producer of Creativity in Captivity, participated in a panel discussing this music.

While listening, audience members couldn't help but wonder how anyone living in such depravity could manage to write such beautiful and uplifing music.

"The will to siurvive can stimulate brutality or it can stimulate creativity," Dahlan pointed out. "Music can be a way to leave some kind fo mark. To say I was here. I lived."

The event was sponsored in part by the Lotoro Institute, and it is the collection of Professor Francesco Lotoro, a collection of music written by those interned in concentration camps and other prisons during World War II entitled, 'Musica Concentrazionaria'  that has been the inspiration for Dahlan's Creativity in Captivity initiative. "It's a never-ending process." Dahlan says, "Our goal is to keep this music alive, to give back their voices."  

Panelists: Ambassador Douglas A. Davidson, Program Moderator, Special Envoy for Holocaust IssuesIra Forman, Special Envoy to Monitor and Combat Anti-Semitism; Bret Werb, Musicologist, United States Holocaust Memorial Museum; Julia Fromholz, Special Assistant, Office of the Under Secretary for Civilian Security, Democracy, and Human Rights, and Dahlan Robert Foah         

Video Link to Event Here.


Kali Orangutans Star at Environmental Photo Festival in Zingst

by osanna vaughn


The Environmental Photo Festival in the Baltic Sea spa town of Zingst, Germany, has been held in late May/early June for six years now. As the name suggests, it is all about photography that takes an often critical look at the impact of humankind on the environment. Of course, it also celebrates the beauty of nature.

Last year, the festival's curator, Klaus Tiedge, got a chance to see some of Björn Vaughn's orangutan photos from Kalimantan. He immediately decided that he wanted the 2013 festival to put a particular focus on endangered species. Björn suggested to link up with the Borneo Orang-utan Survival Foundation (BOS), who run the Nyaru Menteng station close to Rungan Sari, and whose orang-utans you see on the river islands close to Tangkiling and Sei Gohong.

Quite independently, Lone Droscher Nielsen, who founded the station in 1999, contacted Björn to say that BOS needed photos and film footage of a dozen orangutans for their adoption programme, so, within just a couple of weeks, Borneo Productions International (BPI) – the company Björn has set up with his brother Pierce and their friend Immanuel Bryson-Haynes – had produced countless photos and film sequences.

This is the brief background story to how a series of delightful orangutan photos has found its way to a a small, grassy park, sheltered by tall oaks and plump bushes, thousands of miles to the northwest of Kalimantan.

The vernissage was held on May 26th in the afternoon, with various officials, photographers, representatives from BOS, and a crowd of on-lookers. The festival closed June 2nd.  (photos of the display by Osanna Vaughn)








Left to Right: Sofia Gielge/Germany; Ivan Mhd. Ridwan/ Indonesia; Lawrence Guntner/Germany; Liliane Tavakilian/France; Andrii and Feodora Gerzhyna/Ukraine;
Latifah Taormina/USA; Feranando Fatah/Mexico; Nestoras Tzalidis/Greece; Ismanah Schulze-Vorberg/Germany; Arifin Conrad/Austria; Emma Nissen/Germany

Stirring Poems & Prayers for Peace Event presented in Wolfsburg Planetarium 

by Zone 4 and SICA during Zonal Gathering the beginning of May  2013. 

It was a full house at the Planetarium in Wolfsburg, May 2, 2013. The press came, Ismanah Schulze-Vorberg, Chair of Subud Germany welcomed everyone. The Deputy Mayor of Wolfsburg greeted everyone and let us in on all the many attractions of Wolfsburg. Robiyan Easty, Zone 4 Coordinator welcomed everyone.  And then we leaned back in our chairs to look up while the Planetarium's Herr Kriegel filled its domed ceiling with the starry night sky over Wolfsburg — and its many constellations.  And then, with Planetarium magic, Herr Kriegel changed the sky to the glittering heavens one would have seen over Java on the night of June 22, 1901 — whose dawn had witnessed the birth of Bapak Subuh.

The sound of Bapak's gambang playing filled the room.  A quiet came to us all.  Then Hamish Barker read, in English, from a talk Bapak had given in Wolfsburg in 1981:  

". . . . Bapak has commented before that the Subud latihan kejiwaan is the source of all culture. Bapak says all because the Subud latihan kejiwaan is all-embracing. We have received the proof of this in the latihan we constantly practice. There is a great variety of movements of which we follow different ones. This is already the case for physical movements, before we go on to such habits as dancing, behavior patterns and — in short — all human practices, since we can meet them all in the Subud latihan kejiwaan. This will permit you all to receive, feel and know the states of other people in the world in addition to your own. Eventually, through it, people come to know, understand and love each other better, since the Subud latihan kejiwaan enables them to gain better insight into their fellow-man's nature and customs. Clearly then, the Subud latihan kejiwaan represents a practical teaching which shows how people of different races can understand one another and live together in harmony, as taught by their respective religions. And if this can become a reality, brothers and sisters, if it spreads, peace and calm will be established in the world. Let us hope, brothers and sisters, that Subud may progress in parallel with the activities of the United Nations, so that they may regulate external affairs while the Subud latihan kejiwaan guides spiritual matters."

Harina Easty followed with a poem in Greek, Latifah Taormina read Devreaux Baker's winning 2012 Peace poem, "Recipe for Peace," in English. Bogdana Bodiu followed with a Rumanian/Russian song. Lilian Noetzel, Ragna Valli, and Daphne Alexopolou read in German, Finnish, and English respectively. Mariam Tikale played a guitar piece. Damiri Knapheide, Gyula Munkaczy shared poems in English, German and Hungarian.  Peter Torsen sang in Norwegian, Gregor Schultz, a published poet himself, read peace poems in German. Rusydah Ziesel sang variations on "Allah hu Akbar." Hanna de Roo played "Kol Niedre" on Cello; Lavan and Varda Daliot spoke "Kol Niedre" in Aramaic and English.  All this under the Javanese night sky.  A lovely reception in the lobby followed the performance.  People were all very happy and bubbly.  Kudos to Lawrence Guntner who arranged much of the program and who will be doing a follow up Poems for Peace program with school children on Peace Day!

All very very lovely. It made people feel they, too, could do a Poems for Peace event September 21, 2013 in their own communities. It gave them a prototype. Of course, they will do it in their own way, but they could see that it's not difficult. Everyone could also see the impact of such an event — how it could also touch the feelings.

Click here to download a SICA Poems for Peace toolkit if you would like to host a Poems for Peace event on Peace Day in your community.  Additional information about SICA's Poems for Peace initiative is also in the PROGRAMS section of this site.

Critics Ecstatic at Lucy Lopez'

Debut Exhibition in Paris.

Critics were ecstatic with the debut of Lucy Lopez' work in Paris in January.

"The birth of a painter is a moving moment," writes Olivier Wahl. "Something I've had the privilege of witnessing often.

"This exhibition of Lucy López is like a baptism, because it marks the moment when an artist is allowed in the community. It's also an opportunity for for us to experience the power and vigor of her creativity. It's not improvised; it comes from the bottom of the soul. The work comes in whether we want it or not. It transforms us. So Lopez is a painter.

". . . It is the elixer of life, a promise that was always present. The light of winter, but the rustle of spring. . . .Come and see.

— Olivier Wahl, January 2013.


Thanks to Raphaelle Vivier for sending this on to SICA. Text above is a loosely translated excerpt of the complete review.  Click here to see flyer and complete review in French.  





SICA Spain Exhibits Five Subud Artists at annual FAIM event in Madrid

Soray Sendin writes that five major Spanish artists are exhibiting this week at FAIM, the annual Independent Art Fair in Madrid. Around 200 national and international artists take part every year. The five who are exhibiting are: Luz Guerin (Subud Alicante), Melina Nebauer (Subud Alicante), Laura-Montseé (Subud Alicante), Seila Ochandiano (Subud Madrid) and Ricardo Sabater (Subud Alicante). A sampling of Laura Montseé's work is above right. More of her work and the inspiration for her work is on her own website. The two paintings above left are by prolific Spanish artist, Seila Ochandiano.  Seila is also exhbiting at Juca Claret Art Gallery in Madrid for the month of November. Download a flyer for the exhibition.  

At right is Ricardo Sabater's mural of Melek Taus, or the Peacock Angel, central to the Yazidi whose beliefs contain elements of both Zorastrian and Islamic Sufi doctrine. The Yazidi, according to Wikipedia, believe in God as Creator of the World, which he placed under the care of seven holy beings or angels, the chief of whom is Melek Taus.  Detail of mural right.


Uraidah Hassani being awarded 2012 Rising Star Award by

Young and Powerful for Obama.

She will be give the award and the Young and Powerful Fundraiser at Chelsea Manor in New York City on October 11, 2012. This honor comes about as a result of Uraidah's outstanding work with The Women Worldwide Initiative, an organization she founded that is also a sponsored project of SICA's. Uraidah was already featured earlier this year on Melissa-Harris Perry's TV show on MSNB as Perry's "foot soldier" of the week and as a shining a light on TWWI's "Young Women Rock" program.  Uraidah is a shining example of what she is constantly encouraging young woman to do; "Dream big."  The Women Worldwide Initiative is also a shining example of encouraging young women to develop their own gifts and talents, and to value themselves as human beings — core SICA values.  Click here to visit their website — and support their work!