Even as world headlines from the Middle East focus on upheaval and violence, the region's culture continues to thrive. Here's our look at some groups and individuals making their mark on arts and culture in the region, in no particular order.
Ahmed Mater, Saudi Arabia
Ahmed Mater is considered one of the most significant artists in the Saudi contemporary art world. His range spans painting, photography, installations, video and calligraphy and have been displayed extensively. Motifs from traditional and globalized culture often live throughout his work. He is also a founder of Edge of Arabia, an independent arts initiative that nurtures a network of artists in Saudi Arabia through exhibitions and educational programs.