Roya Rastegar is an artist, scholar, and curator living between Los Angeles and Philadelphia.
in economics, studio art, and women’s studies at Wellesley College,
Roya was compelled to explore how financial structures both enable
and constrain our cultural landscape. After working as an investment
banking analyst at Merrill Lynch and UBS Warburg, Roya decided to
pursue her doctorate at the History
of Consciousness program from the University of California, Santa Cruz,
under the guidance of Angela Y. Davis and B. Ruby Rich. What
began as scholarly inquiry into the historic emergence and contemporary
practices of film festivals in the U.S., developed into a professional
career as a film curator and artist.
After serving as the co-Director of the Santa Cruz Women of Color Film & Video Festival in 2005,
Roya continued to participate in the programming process at a number of film festivals, including the Sundance Film Festival, the Los Angeles Film Festival, Tribeca Film Festival, Outfest's Fusion Film Festival, and the Arab
about the differences between art and film curating practices, Roya
accepted a Curatorial Fellowship at the Whitney Museum of American Art,
and co-curated an exhibition “Time Out of Joint: Recall and Evocation in Recent Art,” held at The Kitchen in the Spring of 2009 in New York as part of the Whitney Independent Study Program.Roya has been invited to serve on the juries of the New Orleans International Film Festival, Outfest, and SANFIC: the Santiago Festival International de Cine, and she regularly speaks about curatorial practice and film festivals at universities and international conferences.
Roya collaborated with Wu Tsang as the screenwriter of Wildness (2012), a magical realist documentary that premiered at MoMA’s
Documentary Fortnight Festival and has gained critical acclaim at
festivals across the Americas. She was recently awarded a Creative Capital grant in the Emerging Fields for her new media
installation project, “Between Sight and Desire: Imagining the Muslim Woman” currently in development with writer/director Maryam Keshavarz (Circumstance, 2010).
is a Visiting Assistant Professor and Andrew Mellon Postdoctoral Fellow
in the History of Art Department at Bryn Mawr College, where
she teaches courses on independent film culture, race and ethnicity, and curatorial practice.
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