APSU’s New Gallery Presents ‘Listening: The Fourth String’ to Continue Engaging Exhibition Season

Clarksville, TN – The New Gallery, with support from the Center of Excellence for the Creative Arts and the Department of Art and Design at Austin Peay State University (APSU), is pleased to present Listen: the fourth string by visual artist Raheleh Filsoofi and musician Reza Filsoofi to continue a captivating 2021-22 exhibition season.




Listen: the fourth string is an artistic collaboration that combines artist, musician and community,” said Michael Dickins, Director of The New Gallery. “This project conceptualizes listening and examines the listening experience as a way to change societal perceptions and cross-cultural communication, particularly as it relates to the Middle Eastern community in the Middle Tennessee region.

“Despite an estimated Middle Eastern population of 20,000 in and around Nashville, Nashville’s music scene has not created a solid, ongoing platform for its art and music,” he added. . “This project strives to create community engagement and raise awareness of Middle Eastern cultures and their unique contributions to art and music.”

The exhibit opened on Monday, February 21 and will run through March 25 at the New Gallery, located in the Art + Design building at Austin Peay State University.

Inspired by the life and work of Moshtagh Ali Shah in the 18and century, this collaborative effort between ceramicist and visual artist Raheleh T. Filsoofi and musician Reza Filsoofi consists of a series of interactive multimedia installations and public performances.

In the new gallery, visitors will be invited to sit and play a large 16-by-20-foot instrument while being “watched” by Iranian musicians from a bank of large video screens.

Then, visitors can go upstairs to the Barbara Beach Gallery to learn how to play the setar with video instructions from Reza Filsoofi. It is an interactive exhibit that encourages the community to play and learn.

Several events accompany the exhibition:

  • A gallery talk and performance by Raheleh and Reza Filsoofi at 12:30 p.m. on February 24 at The New Gallery.
  • Raheleh Filsoofi will present an artist talk about her work and creative practice at 6:00 p.m. on February 24 in room 106 A/B of the Sundquist Science Complex. This event is in person, but will also be streamed live, courtesy of CECA. Registration for the live stream event is available here.
  • A performance by Reza Filsoofi and Michael Hix will take place on March 3 at noon in the New Gallery.
  • This exhibit will be open during the Clarksville First Thursday Art Walk from 5:00 p.m. to 7:30 p.m. on March 3.
  • A grand celebration of Nowruz (Iranian New Year) will take place at 5:00 p.m. on Saturday, March 19 in the APSU Art + Design building. This event will include Iranian food and a musical performance by Reza Filsoofi, Raheleh Filsoofi, Charlie Gilbert and Carlos Duran.


All events are free and open to the public.

A virtual tour of the exhibition will be available soon and can be found at www.apsu.edu/art-design/thenewgallery.

This project is supported by funding from CECA, APSU, Tennessee Arts Commission and Vanderbilt University.

The new gallery’s hours of operation are 9:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m. Monday through Friday, closed on weekends and holidays, and follows the university’s academic calendar.

For more information about this exhibit, which is free and open to the public, contact Dickins at dickinsm@apsu.edu.

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