img-isaff The Tasveer South Asian Film Festival (TSAFF, formerly known as SSAFF) is Tasveer’s most extensive production. It is a 10-day extravaganza that takes place every October. The first TSAFF took place in 2004. The festival creates a lively, stimulating, and focused environment for conversation, education, and exploration of issues that face South Asia and its Diaspora. Through a series of film screenings, panel discussions, workshops, and cultural programming, our goal is to involve audiences not just with the film and video works presented, but to create a prolonged space where the social, political, personal, and international issues that form the core subjects of those works can be discussed and understood.


img-aainaAaina, which in Hindi/Urdu means mirror, celebrates and focuses on artistic work of and about South Asian women. Tasveer launched Aaina in March 2006. Aaina includes film, visual and performance art, speakers, and conversations aimed at highlighting issues relevant to South Asian women. The spotlight event of Aaina is Yoni Ki Baat, a South Asian adaptation of the Vagina Monologues that is directed by a local South Asian woman.



Farah Nousheen and Rita Meher founded Tasveer in March 2002 in Seattle, soon after 9/11/2001. Troubled by the stereotyped and highly prejudicial images of South Asians depicted in the mainstream media at that time, they sought to dispel those mischaracterizations by giving South Asians a chance to speak for themselves. They selected storytelling—specifically, through art and film—accompanied by community dialogue, as their method. Tasveer means picture in Hindi/Urdu.

Tasveer’s first screening was held at The Elliot Bay Book Company during Pride Month 2002, and since then, Tasveer has become an arts and culture fixture in the Seattle and Eastside area. Each year it produces three major festivals–the South Asian Film Festival; the South Asian International Documentary Film Festival; and Aaina, a festival celebrating South Asian community. Tasveer also organizes and partners with numerous other organizations throughout the year. Since 2002, Tasveer has shown over 800 films, has welcomed over 15,000 audience members to its events, and has empowered over 100 women to share their life experiences onstage in Yoni Ki Baat.

Tasveer was incorporated as Washington state non-profit in March 2004 and federally recognized 501c3 organization in April 2013.

Rita Meher is Tasveer’s Executive Director. Read more about her on the staff page. Contact
Telephone: 206-349-4478

For general inquiries: info@tasveer.org

Farah Nousheen now lives in Albuquerque, New Mexico with her partner and son.



Mission: To inspire social change through thought-provoking South Asian films, art, and storytelling.

Objective: To engage the community through films, storytelling, and visual art from South Asia and its diaspora; to inspire social change; to foster a deeper understanding of South Asian culture, and to build a just and sustainable society.

Values: Our work is guided by the following principles:

  • Education—Tasveer strives to educate and inform the community through thought-provoking films, stories and art.
  • Dialogue—Tasveer strives to create safe, respectful, and loving spaces for constructive dialogue around issues of race, gender, class, caste, religion, and sexuality. We welcome all viewpoints, in the spirit of challenging existing power structures. We believe this type of dialogue fosters shared understanding.
  • Creativity & High Quality—Tasveer strives to produce programs featuring films, art, and stories that demonstrate excellence both in creativity and quality.
  • Inclusivity—“South Asia” covers Afghanistan, Bangladesh, Bhutan, India, Maldives, Nepal, Pakistan, Sri Lanka, and their diasporas worldwide.



Throughout the year, we design diverse, thought-provoking, and powerful events, and  we partner with organizations, filmmakers, performers, visual artists, journalists, professors, and activists.

Our main events are

  • -Tasveer South Asian Film Festival
  • -Aaina: South Asian Women’s Focus
  • -South Asian International Documentary Festival
  • -Tasveer Reels: Monthly screenings at Bellevue Arts Museum

More information on current and past events can be found on the Events page.



Tasveer was founded by Farah Nousheen and Rita Meher. Numerous volunteers help out with specific screenings and tasks. Tasveer is in constant need of volunteers, click here for information about exciting volunteering opportunities!.

Meet Our Board Members(Click for more information)

Meet Our Staff(Click for more information)