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The Theme of the 2015 exhibition was “We Are the Bridge” in which we aimed to discover how artists creatively envision themselves, their culture, faith, community, and art being a bridge from conflict to resolution and reconciliation. We acepted artwork that expresses the theme and a commitment to interfaith understanding, coexistence, peace, and cultural dialogue.
On this page you can view the online gallery of the “We Are the Bridge” exhibition based on the alphabetic order of artists' names.
A - D
E - L
M - R
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  1. salma-arastu--So-that-you-know-each-other
  2. salma-arastu-Unity-Mandala
  3. Sara-Frucht-Ill-See-You-in-the-Promised-Land-18x24x1
  4. sara-pisheh-wake-up-call
  5. Shafaq-Ahmad_faithandidentityII_
  6. Shams-Sadat-R-N-Untitled1
  7. Shira-Anisman
  8. Sima-Moshtaghi-Blue-Way--19X27in
  9. Simone-Adair-Amos-41.5-x-31.5-x-1.5
  10. Salam-Guillot-Nabi-Musa
  11. Susan-Duhan-Felix-One-Light1
  12. Susan-Duhan-Felix-One-Light2
  13. Susan-Duhan-Felix-Peace
  14. Susan-Freundlich-Bedouin-Girl
  15. Susan-Freundlich-Jeremy-Shufat-Kids
  16. Tamar-Raine--Axis
  17. Salam-Guillot-Dome-of-the-Rock
  18. Said-Nuseibeh-Young-man-in-prayer
  19. Said-Nuseibeh-Light-is-a-ladder
  20. Tree-Gelb-Stuber-Hamsa--Protect-me-from-the-Evil-Eye---12x12x12
  21. Tamar-Raine-Star-of-David-Hamsa
  22. Taskeen-Fatehdin
  23. tom-debley--Columbian-Flower-Vendor
  24. tom-debley--Visitor-from-Mali-Celebrates-His-Culture
  25. Yael-Kirsch-prague_11_14_0.1
Said Nuseibeh
"Light is a ladder even with your eyes shut." Isfahan 2007   l    16x20x1    l    Photography: pigment on rag.
Description: My friend and colleague Shagufa in shafts of sunlight from a tympanum grille. Northeast Mozzaffarid prayer hall, Friday congregational mosque. The inspiration was light's serendipitous transformation of 2-dimendional pattern (the carved stucco grille) into energy and how that is a metaphor for bridging the sacred and profane. Ed. 2/33.
Said Nuseibeh
"Young Man in Prayer." Qubbat as-Sakhra 1996
16x20x1    l    Photography: pigment on rag.
Description: Our actions are a form of writing. They leave traces of our intent writ upon the ether of time. It is these traces which are to be scrutinized at the end-of-times, a reckoning which 7th-century Believers thought would happen adjacent to the Dome of the Rock, where all people would be brought before the Deity and judged. Here my friend Ra’ed performs one raka’ah, a complete prayer sequence. Coincidently, the figure standing, kneeling and prostrating creates a residual time-lapse figure on film which spells in Arabic from right-to-left, Adam: aleph-dal-mim. Ed. 8/33.
Salam Guillot
Dome of the Rock      l     20" x 16" (flat canvas)
Acrylics on Canvas      l     $625
Description: "Jerusalem is the home for all the people," my shaykh Sidi Muhammad says. A truly mystical place, the Dome of the Rock is the site where the Prophet Muhammad, peace and blessings be upon him, came in his Night Journey. I have heard so many profound  stories of how moved people are when coming to the third holiest site in Islam. The word Islam means to surrender to Gods will, and putting one's head down to prostrate in a mosque is a Muslim's way of showing their humility and surrender to God. Many I know enter the Dome, and weep.
Salam Guillot
Nabi Musa, Jericho           l           20" x 16" (flat canvas)
Acrylics on Canvas           l            $450
Description: In the middle of the desert of Jericho lies a small village where Muslims believe Musa's tomb lays. Nabi Musa means Moses' tomb. Originally, the Jews and Muslims, and Christians, of the Holy Land were brothers, hand in hand. We all want the same things- goodness, peace, a chance at a life with God. Many people I know find this place to be their favorite site in the Holy Land. God bless all the prophets, without separation.
Salma Arastu
So That You Know Each Other      l      15" diameter
Acrylics on Board       l           $1500
Description: 1.Al-Quran-49:13
Roman Transliteration
Yaaa-ayyuhan-naasu innaa khalaqnaakum-min-zaka-rinw-wa unsaa wa ja-alnaa-kum shu-uubanw-wa qabaaa’ila lita-‘aarafuu.
English Translation

O mankind! We created you from a single (pair) of a male and a female, and made you into nations and tribes, that ye may know each other.
Salma Arastu
Unity-Mandala_4          l           14" diameter
Ecrylics, paper and pen & ink on board       l       $1200
Description: I started a new series of paintings titled “Unity of Symbols and Sacred Words” in 2013 with hope to reflect the interconnectedness of belief in our collective cultural memory of origination of stories and use of script in conveying spiritual teachings. The painting Unity-Mandala-4 is part of my new series. I was fortunate to have received second time individual artist funding from East Bay Community Foundation and private donors support for this project.
Sara Frucht
I'll See You in the Promised Land     l     18 x 24 x 1
Acrylics on paper     l       $750
Description: The promised land is a place that we create here on Earth through our commitment to peace, justice, love and compassion. One thing we must have in order to arrive in the promised land is the absolute faith that other peace-loving people share our vision, though they may come from different backgrounds and belief systems. We cannot get there by ourselves.  This painting is an expression of my belief in the genuine soul connection and shared vision that exists between all peace-loving people on Earth.
Sarah Pisheh
Wake up call     l     18x18x1
Collage of wood and fabric        l          $520
Description: Calligraphy on wood. The poem shows this world is like a bridge that we just pass it. I used fabric and wood to collage one of my favorite poems. We need the wake up call every day!
Shafaq Ahmad
Faith and Identity II     l    30 x 30 x 2
Archival pigment print on canvas, edition of 10   l $600
Description: I was born in Pakistan and of course have very strong affiliations with Islamic faith and culture. At age 20 I moved to Britain and also lived in Iran and Denmark and eventually settled in the United States.  Living in Pakistan and in other countries I have had the privilege to know Muslim, Christian and Jewish friends as well as friends from other faiths. I have also spent considerable amount of time in Sweden and Czech Republic working as an artist. "Faith and Identity II" represents my experiences and friendships in all these Countries as they have become a part of my identity today as an artist and a Muslim woman. The use of the flags from these countries have elements which symbolize the three Abrahamic Faiths for me.
Shams Sadat Razavi Nematollahi
Untitled    l     8.5x11x1
Pen on Paper     l    NFS
Description: In her works, Razavi N. envisions the enchanting world of interwoven birds with very detailed lines and patterns rooted in traditional Persian painting (negargari). Her designs seem at first unpretentious on closer observation, however, layers of meaning and aesthetic reveal themselves, pointing to a symbolism with its origins in Iranian folklore and literature, to mystic narratives. These works have connection to the artist’s belief in equality and freedom of all human beings that can be a bridge among different faiths and cultures; like the free birds in sky.
Shira Anisman
Stepping From War To Peace     l      18 x 33 x 8
mixed media sculpture     l     NFS
Description: I wanted to very literally use culture to build a bridge. I constructed it from elements of culture: books about peace, war, religion, etc. Culture, like bridges, can be used to connect people. I also added in my personal culture- stuffed animals. These creatures are not just my art, but part of my identity. In my piece, these animals are climbing a cultural bridge to unite at the middle. I hope that we, as artists and humans, can come together in this way by using our cultures to unify.
Sima Moshtaghi
Blue Way     l    19X27 inch
Digital Arts    l    NFS

Description: Implemented photo taken of Eslimi tiling in Blue Mosque in Tabriz, Iran, composed with digital rendering of walking feet on blue surface, represents fluid air and water.
Simone Adair
Amos    l    41.5 x 31.5 x 1.5
Acrylics on Canvas    l     NFS
Description: Portrait of Amos Oz, Israeli writer, novelist, journalist and intellectual, who believes in a two-state solution in the  Palestine/Israel conflict. Oz, whose mother committed suicide when he was 12, has written 38 books, one of which is A Tale of Love and Darkness recounting how his mother's death affected him. In March 2011, Oz sent imprisoned leader Marwan Barghouti a copy this book with his personal dedication in Hebrew: “This story is our story, I hope you read it and understand us as we understand you, hoping to see you outside and in peace, yours, Amos Oz”.
Susan Duhan Felix
"One Light"   l    8 x 8.5 x 2
Pit-fired Ceramic    l     $300
Description: I dream of peace in the present and in the future. This candleholder has Hebrew calligraphy on one side, and Arabic calligraphy on the other.
The two sides come together to form one light.
Susan Duhan Felix
"One Light"   l    8 x 8.5 x 2
Pit-fired Ceramic    l     $300
Description: I dream of peace in the present and in the future. This candleholder has Hebrew calligraphy on one side, and Arabic calligraphy on the other.
The two sides come together to form one light.
Susan Duhan Felix
"Peace"    l    10.5 x 11 x 1.5
Ceramic on Wood    l    $600
Description: This pit-fired ceramic plaque has "Peace" written in English, Arabic, and Hebrew. I was inspired to offer this prayer for the present and the future.
Susan Freundlich
Bedouin Girl    l    12 x 12
archival photograph    l    $150
Description: This image was made near the town of Anata in the West Bank, several miles outside of Jerusalem. The family of this girl raises sheep. They live with no running water or electricity. She led me to see her teenage brother tending the flock of sheep, in an area overlooking a large Israeli settlement, glistening with sparkling green lawns and swimming pools.

The Bedouin are traditionally pastoral nomadic Arab tribes living in the Negev and other regions in Israel. Many live in unrecognized towns. There are approximately 210,000 Bedouin in the Negev region.
Susan Freundlich
Rabbi Jeremy & The Boys of Shu'fat Refugee Camp
12 x 16"    l    archival photograph    l     $150
Description: This image was made at the Shu'fat Refugee Camp in the West Bank during a visit. Rabbi Jeremy Milgrom describes his congregation as the Palestinian and Bedouin people. He spends much of his time providing the assistance he is asked for by his Palestinian and Bedouin friends.
Shu’fat is a Palestinian Arab neighborhood of East Jerusalem, forming part of north-eastern Jerusalem. Located on the old Jerusalem-Ramallah road about three miles north of the Old City, Shu'fat has a population of 35,000 residents. Shu'fat refugee camp was established by king Hussein of Jordan in 1965.
Tamar Raine
if i, would you?     l     51 1/2 x32 1/2 x1 1/2
polymer clay on wood    l     $1200
Description: In my art and writing now, I like to create pieces that speak to people's hearts. I like to include people with disabilities in my art because we are often not represented in art at all. This particular piece is called "if I, would you?" It is a scene from a performance that Axis Dance Company did last year.  They are a multi-ability, dance company in Oakland. If you haven't seen them, you'd be in for a treat. You will never see dance in the same old way.
Tamar Raine
Star of David Hamsa    l     9.5 x 11x 3/8ths
polymer clay on wood     l     $75
Description: I am Jewish, and the Star of David has always meant a lot to me. It is the main symbol of Judaism. The Hamsa is also called the hand of Miriam or hand of protection from the evil eye, and is popular among many religions that originated along the Mediterranean area. The Ram's horn is called a Shofar in Hebrew and is blown every year at Rosh Hashonah which is the Jewish New Year.  
Tree Gelb Stuber
Hamsa:  Protect me from the Evil Eye
12 x 12 x 12    l    Ceramic    l    $108
Description: he hamsa symbol is believed to bring its wearer or owner happiness, luck, health, and good fortune.  Shaped like a hand, with three extended fingers in the middle and a thumb or pinky finger on either side. It is thought to protect against the “evil eye” and misfortune. In recent years, activists for peace in the Middle East have adopted the hamsa hand. Because hamsa hand symbology is believed to predate most modern religions, those who actively support a peaceful resolution to the ongoing Israeli conflict believe that wearing the hamsa hand highlights not only the similarities of Judaism, Islam and Christianity, but also the similarities of the origins of the religions.
Taskeen Fatehdin
Bridge the Gap    l     23x20x0.5 inches
Mixed medium/paper on canvas     l     $350
Description: Use of paper weaving to show we are all different yet the same, it takes little effort to connect and be connected. We have to find it in our Hearts (paper woven to represent the string that pull us together) to care, forgive and connect any differences. Distances are created and can be barriers or use the same barrier as a bridge to join forces.
The easy flow of paper shows a visual connection. Different colors show the differences we carry. We are the beads in the piece representing our journeys of life and venture. Connected we are and will remain so.
Tom Debley
Columbian Flower Vendor   l     17.25x17.25x1
Photograph, matted and framed   l    $125
Description: “We Are the Bridge,” theme of the Interfaith Art Exhibit, seemed to be epitomized by this image of Alexander de Jesus Nieto Marin, a silletero, or flower vendor, from Medellín, Colombia at a celebration of “The Peace Corps: Fifty Years of Promoting World Peace and Friendship.” He carried these red gladiolas in a cultural display of the flower trade in his city, which includes the annual Festival of the Flowers, one of the ways Medellín celebrates and shares its culture and hopes to bring travelers to the city that once was the home of drug cartels.
Tom Debley
Villager from Mali Celebrates His Culture
11.75x18.75x1  l   Photograph, matted and framed
Description: “We Are the Bridge,” theme of the Interfaith Art Exhibit, evoked photographs I took at a celebration of “The Peace Corps: Fifty Years of Promoting World Peace and Friendship.” Participants included local people from around the world who’ve partnered with Peace Corps Volunteer advisors and educators for over five decades.  Here, Simbè Sankarè, from Sèvarè in the West African Republic of Mali, models “bogolan” fabric, or “mud cloth,” with dye made from fermented mud. He was one of three Mali residents who were “bridging” their culture with American visitors to a 50th Anniversary Peace Corps festival.
Yael Kirsch
Prague     l     14x17x0.1
Soft pastel on velum paper, fixative spray    l    $500
Description: For me, an important part of creating a painting is accident, letting something happen whose outcome I cannot force. Letting the colors shapes chose themselves. Thus creating is a time space of openness. But being open to ourselves, our own feelings, we can be become open to hearing about others' feelings and experiences. Be being aware of who we are, personally, nationally, religiously, we can open up to 'the other'. For me, Prague represents the multicultural, the blending of different languages and religions in (for many years at least) fruitful cultural exchange and (relatively) peaceful coexistence. In this particular picture, the shape of the onion like tower is reminiscent all at once of a minaret tower, an orthdox christian tower, a church bell tower, and the cupola of some Jewish temples. While we are in desperate need of religious understanding in the present, we do have example of peaceful coexistence in the past.
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