About LA Islam Arts Initiative

The Los Angeles/Islam Arts Initiative (LA/IAI) brings

together nearly 30 cultural institutions throughout Los Angeles to tell various

stories of traditional and contemporary art from multiple Islamic regions and

their significant global diasporas. LA/IAI is the first-of-its kind, wide-scale

citywide initiative on Islamic arts producing and presenting programming such

as art exhibitions, panels, discussions, and performances. Anchoring LA/IAI are

two connected exhibitions, Doris Duke's Shangri La: Architecture, Landscape,

and Islamic Art and the contemporary art exhibition, Shangri La: Imagined Cities

commissioned by the Department of Cultural Affairs (DCA) to be held at DCA's

Los Angeles Municipal Art Gallery (LAMAG) at Barnsdall Park from October 26

to December 28, 2014.


Los Angeles' substantial populations from areas with strong Islamic roots make LA

a compelling location for this initiative. LA/IAI casts a wide net, being inclusive and

welcoming, with art as its central focus. The term "Islamic art" includes work created

by non-Muslim artists from Muslim-dominant countries, work by Muslims creating art

in non-Muslim dominant countries, and work by artists culturally influenced by Islam.

Designed to build a greater understanding of the role of Islamic arts, LA/IAI seeks to

stimulate the global conversation in connection to cultural, political, and social issues.

The celebration of Islamic art and culture is presented by DCA with major support

from the Doris Duke Foundation for Islamic Art, the National Endowment for the Arts,

the California Community Foundation, the California Institute of the Arts (CalArts),

and the Barnsdall Park Foundation.