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.
Shadi Ghadirian, Iran
Photo artist Shadi Ghadirian sets the stage and then snaps, to create a work of art. She's internationally known for her “Like Every Day” series, where figures in chador-like coverings have their faces obscured by household appliances. In a recent black-and-white series (one image in the series is pictured), “Miss Butterfly,” women weave spider webs. Curators say the Tehran-based artist taps into her own experiences as she delightfully critiques the traditional confines within which women find themselves.