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Peacebuilding with pitta bread, punchlines and performance art The Talking Peace Festival 2014 will take the form of a series of events to be held around London this autumn to highlight the aims of the International Day of Peace on 21 September. Using the universal language of creativity, it aims to illustrate the importance of dialogue in resolving conflicts. People are the greatest tools in peace-building, so the festival is kicking off by talking about how the things people do every day can either tighten the bonds of peace – or generate division and sow the seeds of future conflict.

With contributions from the world of art, theatre, food and music, the event aims to generate a lively debate about how everyday culture – such as what we eat, listen to, and even the jokes we share – can resolve or deepen conflicts between us. The panelists include Arieb Azhar the Sufi/folk musician from Pakistan, James O’Brien, journalist and presenter at the popular LBC radio station, Claudia Roden, celebrated cook and author of books on Middle Eastern and Jewish cuisine, Salman Siddiqui, Cochair of the MUJU Crew, which provides creative spaces for Muslim/Jewish collaboration and Dan Smith, Secretary General at the conflict resolution charity International Alert.

Trick-Shot ace David Edwards returning to NBO Golf Classic

David Edwards, arguably the most entertaining trick-shot showmen in golf, will return to the Challenge Tour event at The Wave complex in Muscat, Oman, in October, after his superbly entertaining performances at the inaugural event last year caught the imagination of everyone who saw his show from dignitaries to schoolchildren.

“I’ve performed my trick-shot shows all over the world and I had a particularly wonderful time with the crowd last year in Oman,” says Edwards, who used to earn his living as a PGA club professional in the UK. Edwards has taken his show to more than 50 different countries around the world.He is hugely popular in Asia and in 2013 he made no fewer than seven trips to China alone as part of a hectic schedule that saw him fly more than 125,000 miles and help raise over £100,000 for charity.

8  The Middle East September 2014

Palimpsest, Darvish Fakhr’s debut solo exhibition in London Over the last three years Fakhr has produced an extraordinary collection of multi-layered pieces influenced by his recent trips to Iran. In a body of work including paintings, installation and the eponymous digital collage Palimpsest (2014), Fakhr explores the relationship between shared memory and the passage of time, looking to both the past and the future. The historical patination implied by the artist’s chosen ground of Iranian public walls – sun-bleached, free-form noticeboards ordered and organized only by the passage time – is set off by the contemporary thread that runs through this collection. The exhibition runs from 4 September to 8 November at the EOA Projects Gallery in London.

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