The Contemporary Art Talks programme is organised by the Department of Art
Basir Mahmood’s photographs, films and videos depict social identities and class distinctions that play out in daily life. Highly formal, his works offer stripped back, meditative approaches to their subjects, using the restricted framing and deep focus of documentary image-making. “Lunda Bazaar” 2010 was shot in a second-hand market in Lahore that deals in clothes rejected by charity shops in the United Kingdom. It shows a series of men trying on jackets and coats, unaware that they are being filmed. The image is broken by stall holders, rickshaws and women passing by, who create a layering effect. In “My father” 2010, an upright sewing needle appears in sharp focus as the blurred image of an old man attempting to thread the needle fills the screen. The agonising process evokes a sense of humility and empathy via a personal connection suggested by means of the work’s title, as the man fails each attempt at the task.
Basir Mahmood, born in 1985 in Lahore, Pakistan, where he continues to live and work. Since 2011, his works have been shown widely, including: The Garden of Eden, Palais de Tokyo, Paris, 2012; Moscow International Biennale for Young Art, Russia, 2012; Inaugural Show, Broad Museum, Michigan State University, 2012; Asia Pacific Triennial at Queensland Art Gallery, Brisbane, 2012; Sharjah Biennial 11, 2013.
Basir Mahmood is currently an artist-in-residence at Gasworks, London.
Dates & times
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