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Bahar Studios | Community Heart

Community goes beyond just streets and buildings; it's about the people who give it its heartbeat. We firmly believe that our community's greatness stems from its diverse and remarkable people. Through this project, we aim to showcase the essence of our community through its members and their stories.

We are thrilled to introduce you to Bahar Studios; I hope you enjoy our interview with them as much as we did.

Iranian born designer and artist, Zahra jahanyfard interest in art began an early age. She immigrated to the United States in 2007. She continued her education and graduated from the University of Central Missouri with bachelor of Fine Arts in Studio art. Jahanyfard’s designs and artwork are inspired by her cultural and social background, her studies in the States, and her experience of being a woman influenced by her past and present worlds. Her artwork features mixed media, has been exhibited in numerous venues, and has received a multitude of awards both in Iran and the States.

Bahar Studio is the evolution from a school building in Iran to the fulfillment of a dream in the United States. Bahar Studio is the story of my life and my experiences. It is from my heart to all people.

Q: What inspired you to initiate your non-profit within this community, and how has it evolved over time?

The loss of my father and my immigration to the USA became profound sources of inspiration for me to extend help to others. My father, a staunch advocate of education, was the first person from his village to pursue higher learning. His commitment to education empowered him to assist others in meaningful ways. I find myself deeply inspired by his legacy and am determined to continue his impact on people's lives. It's a way for me to honor his memory and carry forward the spirit of compassion and learning that he so passionately believed in.

Q: Who is the most interesting person you've met here in our community?

My students with Alzheimer's contribute significantly to my personal growth every time I interact and work with them.

Q: Can you share an anecdote about a specific individual or group whose involvement brought about a positive ripple effect within the community?

The impact of the art community within society is profound, consistently creating positive ripples. One particular anecdote highlights the transformative power of a local art group. Their initiatives not only enriched the community aesthetically but also catalyzed positive change. Through mural projects, workshops, and collaborative events, they fostered unity, sparked creativity, and provided a platform for diverse voices. As a result, the community experienced heightened engagement, a strengthened sense of identity, and a deeper connection among its members. The enduring influence of the art community continues to resonate, leaving a lasting legacy of inspiration, inclusivity, and cultural vibrancy.

Q: If you could choose anyone who is alive today and not a relative, with whom would you love to have lunch? Why? And where locally would you like to meet for this lunch?

I will choose one of my friends at my home studio and cook Persian food.

Q: Could you recount a particularly challenging moment in your community journey and how it was overcome through collective efforts?

When I faced challenges funding my school project, I took a creative approach. Despite being short on resources, I created a portrait of Tony and reached out to my ambassador community for support. Through their assistance, we successfully raised funds to complete the restroom and gate construction. Thanks to their generosity, the school was ready in time for the arrival of the children.

Q: What is something interesting that most people don't know about you?

I speak four languages, but art is my native language. Also, since moving to the USA, I have successfully overcome my phobia. Today, I take pride in the fact that I've adopted two cats and gained the ability to drive myself to various places.

Q: How long have you lived or worked in our community?

Eight years, moving here in 2016.

Q: If you could have any superpower, what would it be?

Animal communication.

Q: What 3 words come to mind when you think of the word community?

Connection, support, diversity.


We hope you enjoyed learning more about Bahar Studios! If you feel inclined, you can support this organization by sharing this article, liking their social channels, and getting involved with them—whatever fits in your life.

All the Best,

Angela & Rick Holt

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