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Wednesday, April 20th, 2011    Art
Photographer Vivian Maier
Mysterious Brilliance Brought to LIght

Who is Vivian Maier? It just might be, that she herself didn’t really know. Maier was completely unknown until a young Chicago real estate agent, John Maloof, discovered her work in an attic space after her death at age 83. Many are saying that the treasure trove of street photography she left behind ranks her…

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Wednesday, February 16th, 2011    Culture
Egypt’s Uprising
The Road to Democracy

The towers of fear, erected upon six decades of dictatorship, were cracked and giving way on Cairo Egypt’s Tahrir Square.

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Friday, December 31st, 2010    Art, Culture
Dream of America (Contours Podcast)
A Film about an Iraqi Refuge

The year’s end brings reflection on the power of great creative work. This December, I Interviewed Egyptian-American filmmaker Jehan Harney about her film “Dream of America,” which documents Iraqi men who fled to America after risking their lives in defiance of Saddam Hussein. Listen to how the men’s story literally made Washington Post headlines earlier in 2010. The resulting publicity garnered welcome support for the film’s main subject, a father of four, whose fidelity to the U.S. led him into serious and continuing personal struggles.

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Sunday, December 5th, 2010    Art
Joel Meyerowitz
Photographer's Persistent Vision

For his project “Aftermath: The World Trade Center Archive,” photographer Joel Meyerowitz created an historically relevant and poignant record of ground zero. To photograph at the site was prohibited, so his project was resisted from he beginning. Had Meyerowitz not persisted in his vision, the 8000 image archive, traveling and touching others across the world, would not exist.

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Thursday, November 18th, 2010    Art
JR
Photographer Elevates Identity in the Streets

JR is a young innovative French photographer who stays below radar. He offers few words about his work, but his enormous black and white portraits loom large in highly populated public communities. He directs his subjects to make exaggerated facial expressions that somehow, amidst the amusement, raise questions about identity, poverty, sexism, boredom or violence.

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Monday, October 4th, 2010    Art, Culture
Daniel Pearl World Music Days
9th Annual: Concerts in Memory of Slain Journalist

Loss and creative power seem to be inextricably connected. This month of October marks the 9th year of concerts performed globally in memory of Daniel Pearl, a journalist (and musician) who was brutally murdered by terrorists in Karachi, Pakistan, in early 2002.

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Saturday, October 2nd, 2010    Culture
The Ground Zero Debate
ASMA: Religious Pluralism in America

The high octane debate over Park 51, the proposed Islamic community center of lower Manhattan, rages on. The Americans I know have only compassion in their hearts for the devastating losses of September 11. In fact, one Muslim-American friend of mine, born in Cairo, was especially grief-stricken on that day, due to her love of America and the provence of those terrorist acts.

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Friday, April 16th, 2010    Culture
The Baseline Scenario
Creative Thinkers Urge Financial Reform

The public is wary of the financial industry’s political power in Washington. But is it wary enough? The Baseline Scenario, an engaging blog that breaks down the complexities of the financial disaster for math-challenged readers like me. Begun in 2008, the blog is already cited by a plethora of major magazines and newspapers. The co-author’s new book, “13 Bankers, The Wall Street Takeover and the Next Financial Meltdown,” is one we should all be reading.

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Wednesday, February 17th, 2010    Art
Women of the World
A Global Collection of Art

A dazzling collection of art by women from across the globe was originally intended to be auctioned off in 2003. New Orleans collector Richard C. Colton, Jr. was so moved by the power of the assemblage, however, that he bought it whole in order to keep it that way, and to share it with the world.

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Tuesday, February 16th, 2010    Culture
Shajar-e-Ilm (Tree of Knowledge)
Saving Education for the Girls of Swat Valley

Shiza Shahid, a 20-year-old Stanford student, took Taliban denial of education for girls into her own hands last year after the insurgents ordered all girls schools to closed in the Swat Valley. Shahid’s anger, who grew up only 100 miles outside Swat, drove to mobilize assistance to 26 girls, who joined her last summer in Islamabad

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Introduction
Creative action is the fundamental key to innovation in all fields of endeavor. It has opened the common gateway to remarkable cultural achievements since antiquity. Our complex daily lives are bombarded by stories of what is broken. News of what is not working in our society often trumps what is actually making a difference. This Blog is dedicated to creative action that endures through resistance to spawn positive change. We seek to inspire: to create gateways to new visions, aspirations and solutions. Meet the creative agents of global change.

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The Contours podcast is produced by this blog and accompanies these posts.


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