Samirah AlKassim, Program & Communications Manager
Samirah is a filmmaker and film scholar, with published articles about experimental and independent film/video in Egypt, and research on Egyptian and Arab media. Her films include experimental documentary Far From You about Egyptian singer Umm Kulthoum, among various other experimental films and installations; and publications include “Cracking the Monolith: Film and Video Art in Egypt” (Intellect: New Cinemas Journal), among others. She has taught film studies and production in Singapore (Ngee Ann Polytechnic), Cairo (American University in Cairo), Jordan (Royal Film Commission), and the San Francisco Bay Area (U.C. Berkeley and Sonoma State University); and is currently co-authoring a book on Syrian film director Mohamed Malas. She has an M.F.A. in Cinema from San Francisco State University and a B.A. in English Literature from Oberlin College.
Dagmar Painter, Curator
Dagmar Painter transformed an ad hoc exhibit space into Washington, D.C.’s only full-time art gallery featuring the work of Arab and Arab-American artists. She has lived and worked in the Arab world for over 12 years and has traveled extensively in the Islamic world for over 30 years. In Washington, she previously established and ran the art gallery of the Embassy of Tunisia. She also directed Gallery Patina, a non-profit gallery of the National Council on Aging, which was featured on NBC’s Today Show. She was an Advisory Review Panelist for the D.C. Commission on the Arts and Humanities Grant Panel, a nominator for the Smithsonian Institution SARF awards, and a Juror for the Torpedo Factory Art Studios. She has written and lectured extensively in the U.S. and abroad on cross-cultural and arts issues, at such venues as the Textile Museum in Washington, D.C. and Meridian House International. She also taught seminars on Middle Eastern textiles at the University of Tunis and the Centre D’Etudes Maghrebines, as well as classes at the National Museums of Lagos, Nigeria and Bangkok, Thailand. Selected publications include Arts in the Islamic World, Ornament, Cairo Today, Focus on Pakistan, The Herald, India Today, Arts in Embassies, A Practical Guide to Cairo and Savior: Tunis.
Lucian Dieterman, Program & Communications Associate
Lucian is a graduate from the University of Minnesota-Twin Cities, where he was a double major in Global Studies and Religious Studies with a minor in Arabic Language. During his time at university, he participated in a study-abroad program at Princess Sumaya Institute of Technology in Amman, Jordan, where he focused on intensive Arabic language, religion, and development. Prior to joining The Jerusalem Fund, Lucian interned at the educational branch of The Jerusalem Fund, the Palestine Center.