March 30–May 18, 2014
Bildmuseet is proud to present the first solo exhibition of Shahzia Sikander’s work in Scandinavia. Focusing on her recent production, the exhibition presents Sikander’s video installation Parallax as well as several drawings.
Parallax is comprised of hundreds of tiny drawings that have been digitally animated. The animation deals with the history of maritime trade in the Strait of Hormuz, particularly the fraught history of imperial control. Landscape, topographical maps, fragmented bodies, and variations on Sikander’s signature gopi hair motif appear. This interest in imperial histories and international trade was also explored in Sikander’s previous animation, The Last Post (2010), which addresses the British East India Company and takes the “Exploding Company Man” as its subject. Parallax is accompanied by a musical score composed by Du Yun and made in collaboration with local poets from Sharjah. Parallax is Sikander’s largest and most ambitious animation to date.
Pakistani-born and internationally recognized, Sikander’s pioneering practice takes Indo-Persian miniature painting as a point of departure. She challenges the strict formal tropes of miniature painting as well as its medium-based restrictions by experimenting with scale and media. Such media include animation, video, mural, and collaboration with other artists. Her process-based work is concerned with examining the forces at stake in contested cultural and political histories. Her work helped launch a major resurgence in the Miniature Painting department in the ’90s at the National College of Arts in Lahore, inspiring many others to examine the miniature tradition.
An illustrated catalogue published by Bildmuseet with texts by Cecilia Andersson, Claire Brandon and John Zarobell accompanies the exhibition.