Location: 555 Gallery and Studios, 2801 W. Vernor Hwy, Detroit MI 48216
Exhibition Period: November 17th-December 2
Opening Reception: November 17th 6-10pm
Event title: Jailed Humanity: In Support of an American's quest for freedom from an Iranian Prison
Jailed Humanity: An exhibition of visual and performing arts curated artist Manal Kadry, with assistance from Flint resident Sarah Hekmati to raise awareness and gather regional community support for her brother, Amir Hekmati, who has been wrongfully imprisoned in Iran on charges of espionage. The exhibition includes photography, sculpture, political cartoons, paintings, and music by local and national artists and students. The exhibit will be held at 555 Gallery and Studios located in the former Detroit Third Police Precinct. The precinct’s 5’x7’ holding cells remain and will bring to reality a sense of Amir's imprisonment. Select works will be for sale and the proceeds will go the Amir Hekmati Freedom Fund. To learn more about Amir's imprisonment or make a contributuion visit http://www.freeamir.org/.
Background: While visiting his grandmothers in Iran for the first time in August of 2011, Flint, Michigan resident and former Marine Amir Hekmati was detained by Iranian officials and charged with spying for the CIA. His family and the US government deny these claims. Although initially sentenced to death, his case was overturned in March of 2012 and a new trial was ordered. Since that ruling, Amir remains a prisoner held in solitary confinement in Ward 209 of Evin Prison. He has no visitors, receives no letters, and is not allowed to contact his family. Amir's attorney is also kept from seeing him.