APT8 explores Islamic representations in film with Pop Islam
A series of films, documentaries and art pieces will showcase the diverse customs, beliefs and impact of contemporary Islamic society at QAGOMA.
Despite boasting an influence that spans a sizeable portion of the globe, the Islamic faith and culture is still under-represented in contemporary cinema. Pop Islam seeks to demonstrate the diverse aspects of Islamic society with a cinematic lens on how the religion exists in modern life. Showcasing a range of visual media from Islamic creators, Pop Islam tackles the issues surrounding the religion namely it’s polarising nature in media while showcasing the diverse and nuanced reality of Islam across the globe and how its ideals inspire art.
Running as Part of the 8th Asia Pacific Triennial of Contemporary Art, Pop Islam is co-curated by Australian-Lebanese artist Khaled Sabsabi, who has worked in visual media for much of his career. The exhibition will screen a selection of contemporary pieces from Australia, South-East Asia, the Indian subcontinent, the Middle East and Africa. Films such as Semih Kaplanoğlu’s Bal (Honey) and Asghar Farhadi’s Oscar winning Jodaeiye Nader az Simin (A Separation) look at Islamic culture and domestic life, while Garin Nugroho’s Mata tertutup (The Blindfold) examines the political climate in Indonesia and Haifaa Al-Mansour – the first female filmmaker in Saudi Arabia –has made Wadjda – a film about the restrictions place on women in the Middle East. Head to the QAGOMA website to look a the full list of films and screening times.
Image one: Production still from A Sinner in Mecca 2015 / Director: Parvez Sharma /Image courtesy: the artist and The Film Sales Company, New York
Image two: Production still from Timbuktu 2014 / Director: Abderrahmane Sissako / Image courtesy: the artist and Le Pacte, Paris