London's Victoria and Albert Museum (V&A) announced the shortlist for the Jameel Prize 2011 on Thursday 17 March 2011 at Art Dubai. Ten artists and designers have been shortlisted for this year’s prize, which is awarded every two years. The Jameel Prize is a £25,000 international art prize for contemporary artists and designers inspired by Islamic traditions of craft and design.
Almost 200 nominations for this year's prize were received, from countries as diverse as the United States, Spain, Nigeria, Egypt and Pakistan. A panel of judges, chaired by V&A Director, Sir Mark Jones, selected the shortlist of ten artists and designers. Mark Jones said: “The output of the finalists is very varied, reflecting the richness and diversity of the Islamic traditions that inspired them. The work shows how complex and eloquent the art and design inspired by this tradition has become.” The winner of The Jameel Prize 2011 will be announced at the V&A on 12 September 2011.
Migrant 8, 2010
Oil on panel
115 x 178cm
Courtesy of the artist
The work of the shortlisted artists and designers will be shown at the V&A from 21 July until 25 September 2011 and draws strongly on the artists’ and designers’ own local and regional traditions, celebrating particular materials and iconography with strong references to traditional Islamic art. The works on show will range from felt costumes to sculpture made from hand-made terracotta bricks and from mirror mosaic to digital collages inspired by traditional Persian miniature paintings.
Award-winning architect Zaha Hadid and Patron of the Jameel Prize says: "It is a very exciting time for artists working in Islamic art tradition, there is a real spirit of innovation and creativity in the air. Their work now goes beyond established painting, sculpture and calligraphy to explore new media and reflect the diverse cultures and histories of the region."
The ten shortlisted artists and designers are:
Noor Ali Chagani who will present Life Line (2010) and Infinity (2009); two sculptural works made from miniature terracotta bricks. Chagani translates his training in the principles of Mughal miniature painting into sculpture by using miniature hand made bricks to imitate large building blocks. Noor Ali Chagani was born, lives and works in Pakistan.
Monir Shahroudy Farmanfarmaian is one of Iran’s most celebrated artists with a career spanning more than five decades. She will exhibit Birds of Paradise (2008), a work that demonstrates her distinctive style of adapting and combining Iranian traditions of mirror mosaic and reverse glass painting techniques with a modern aesthetic.
Bita Ghezelayagh works in the traditional Iranian craft of felt-making. She will show three pieces from her Felt Memories series (2007-9), inspired by the Islamic tradition of talismanic coats, worn to protect the wearer from misfortune. Ghezelayagh uses metal keys, crowns, tulips (symbols of martyrdom), machine guns and other street symbols combined with printed Persian phrases to
cover the surface of her pieces.
Babak Golkar will exhibit a new piece entitled Negotiating the Space for Possible Coexistences No.5 (2011). Golkar’s multi-disciplinary work often examines socio-cultural issues experienced from living in both the Middle East and Canada. This work is part of a series that uses the pattern of Persian carpets as a blue print for architectural scale models.
Hayv Kahraman will present two paintings from the Waraq series, Migrant 8 (2010) and Migrant 1 (2010) and Asad Babil, a new work from a series based on Assyrian Lion Hunt relief sculptures. Kahraman’s work is inspired by her experience of living in Baghdad, Europe and the USA. Waraq means ‘playing cards’ in Arabic and references a popular Iraqi pastime. Kahraman has invented a
suit of cards to explore the lives of people who personify the Iraqi diaspora.
Aisha Khalid will display Name, Class, Subject (2009), an artist book inspired by the exercise or ‘copy books’ used by government schools in Pakistan to teach writing in Urdu and English. The book draws on Khalid’s experience as a child growing up in a society shaped by a bilingual culture. Khalid has painted each of the 280 pages of the book in the Mughal style of miniature painting, to look like a ruled exercise book.
Rachid Koraïchi, born in Algeria, will show a selection of embroidered cloth banners from a series entitled Les Maitres invisibles (The Invisible Masters, 2008). Koraichi uses Arabic calligraphy and symbols and ciphers from a range of other languages and cultures to explore the lives and legacies of the fourteen great mystics of Islam.
Hazem El Mestikawy, an Egyptian, will exhibit a sculptural installation made from recycled cardboard, newspaper and glue entitled Bridge (2009). El Mestikawy has created an intricate and geometrical sculpture by reusing equal extracts of Arabic and English newspaper to form seven movable units which can be arranged within the installation to form ‘bridges’.
Hadieh Shafie will show two new works, 22500 (2011) and 26000 Pages (2011) which are a continuation of her signature paper scroll works. Made up of 22,500 and 26,000 strips of paper, each scroll is marked with printed and hand-written Farsi (Persian) text, then tightly rolled into concentric circles, concealing or revealing different elements of the text. The concentric forms of both text and material take their inspiration from the dance of the whirling dervish.
Soody Sharifi will exhibit two prints: Frolicking Women in the Pool (2007) and Fashion Week (2010). Her work often explores the accommodation of modernity within a traditional society, particularly referencing Muslim youth culture in Iran and the United States. In digital collages from her Maxiature’ series, Sharifi has enlarged scans of traditional Persian miniature paintings and interjected them with her own photographs to create layered narratives which reflect either her own personal experience or the storyline of the original miniature painting.
For further information contact:
V&A South Kensington
London SW7 2RL
Tel. +44 (0)20 7942 2000