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September 5, 2013
Contact: Press & Media Relations Coordinator (703-993-8794)

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FAIRFAX, Va., Sept. 5, 2013 – George Mason University’s School of Art is pleased to present an exhibition titled “Converging Parallels” in the Mason Hall Alumni Gallery in Mason Hall on the Fairfax Campus from September 25, 2013 through October 18, 2013. The opening reception will take place on Wednesday, Oct. 9, 2013 from 5:30 p.m. to 7:30 p.m.

The exhibition will include work from artists Stephanie Booth, Rebecca Chase, Elsabe Dixon, Nahid Navab, Maria Karametou, Semra Gür, Başak Özdemir, Irem Sabanuç, Biret Tavman and Vildan Tok. This international collaborative project relates to Identity and explores the dynamics that impact women’s busy lives in the megalopolis environments they live in. With textile related works (traditionally a women’s medium and activity) that explore labor, storytelling and beauty, the participating artists address contemporary issues such as:  How have women’s lives changed in the globalized environment of the 21st century? How is our homogenized world affecting them? What are the common threads that challenge their traditional roles?

             “Converging Parallels” was initiated and organized by Maria Karametou, an Associate Professor at George Mason University's School of Art, and Turkish artist Biret Tavman, Head of the Textiles Department at Marmara University, Istanbul, with the aim of promoting understanding and establishing partnerships across national borders. The project includes Turkish and American artists and was first presented in Istanbul's Ayse Taki Gallery in May 2012.

Karametou is a mixed media artist and professor at George Mason University. After a Fulbright Grant to Istanbul in 2010, she originated this project and co-developed it in collaboration with Tavman. With the goal of giving women artists from each country a voice to speak about who they are, “Converging Parallels” also looks at how they see themselves in their worlds with regards to Place and Time. Karametou’s work relates to the concept of Identity. “I am interested in our journey toward self discovery and in our effort to define and retain our identity in a world characterized on the one hand by ritualized repetitive routines and hurried transactions of unrelenting uniformity, and on the other by the presence of constant change in a digitized and globalized environment” the artist writes. Karametou was born in Athens, Greece.

Tavman is a professor in the Textiles Department at Marmara University in Istanbul. She specializes in knitting and has been working with textiles through academic research and creative production since 1986. Tavman states that her aim is to expand the design possibilities of knitting by creating unusual surfaces in order to demonstrate the breadth of the technique, which is not widespread or well accepted in Turkey. Her work relates to her everyday life experiences.

For more information about this exhibition or George Mason University’s School of Art, please call (703) 993-8898 or email Visit George Mason University’s School of Art online at; on Facebook at; and follow on Twitter at @gmusoa.



About George Mason University’s School of Art

The School of Art is distinct in the way that it provides undergraduate, graduate and post-baccalaureate students a multidisciplinary curriculum and the necessary freedom to develop as artists, designers and scholars. At the same time, we strive for a level of rigor, investigation and cultural relevance that makes our school truly special. Our students translate the most complex ideas into tangible forms—paintings, sculptures, photography, prints, video, performances, books, installations, community projects and, more often than not, a combination of the above. Few schools in the United States provide such a broad range of possibilities.


About the Galleries

The Galleries are located on Mason’s Fairfax campus. The Johnson Center Gallery is located on the main level of the George W. Johnson Center in the heart of the campus. The Fine Art Gallery is located on the ground floor of the Art and Design Building. The Mason Hall Gallery is on the ground floor of Mason Hall on Mason Pond Drive. Galleries are open Monday through Friday, 9 a.m. to 5 p.m., unless otherwise noted, and by appointment. The Concert Hall Gallery is open Tuesday – Friday, 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. The Gallery Program is a division of Mason’s College of Visual and Performing Arts, home to the Center for the Arts. The College of Visual and Performing Arts exists to create an academic environment in which the arts may be considered both as individual disciplines and as interdisciplinary forms that strengthen each other. Believing that an education in the arts is deepened by regular contact with the work of distinguished visiting artists, the College draws on a variety of professional presenting and producing units where artists from across the country and around the world regularly perform, give master classes, work with students during extended residencies, and interact with the community in a variety of other ways. These programs at the Center for the Arts Concert Hall, TheaterSpace, Galleries, Harris Theater, and other venues, provide a diverse selection of challenging and entertaining cultural experiences for the University community, as well as Northern Virginia and the greater Washington, D.C. area. The College is home to the Schools of Music, Dance and Art, the Department of Theater, as well as the Computer Game Design, Arts Management and Film and Video Studies programs.


About George Mason University

George Mason University is an innovative, entrepreneurial institution with global distinction in a range of academic fields. Located in Northern Virginia near Washington, D.C., Mason provides students access to diverse cultural experiences and the most sought-after internships and employers in the country. Mason offers strong undergraduate and graduate degree programs in engineering and information technology, organizational psychology, health care and visual and performing arts. With Mason professors conducting groundbreaking research in areas such as climate change, public policy and the biosciences, George Mason University is a leading example of the modern, public university. George Mason University – Where Innovation Is Tradition.


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