Featuring photography, audiovisual works, and archival materials, Undefined Territory addresses constructions of place, identity, time, and knowledge within contemporary Bangladesh. The works in this exhibition unravel notions of ‘territory’, whether taken to mean the politics of a defined geography, structures of language as propagated by coloniality, or passage of time as palpable to a degree of rigidity and stagnation. Falling outside traditional frameworks of understanding, these ‘territories’ negotiate the limits of the personal as contextualized and rooted within the political. Undefined Territory foregrounds images, still and moving, and synthetic materials to engage with these constructs, locating the impersonal, the identifiable, the absurd and the tangible in dialectic play. This exhibition includes works by Shumon Ahmed, Palash Bhattacharjee, Marzia Farhana, Shahria Sharmin, and Munem Wasif.
Presented by Bangladesh Art Week, as part of the first edition of Bangladesh Art Week Dubai.
Bangladesh Art Week
Bangladesh Art Week, the voice of Bangladesh’s art industry, provides a platform for emerging and established artists to showcase their artwork within an international context. Bangladesh Art Week offers unrivaled connection to the art world by uplifting the increasingly vibrant Bangladesh visual arts industry through interaction, guidance and exposure. All Bangladesh Art Week activities supported by the Founder, Niharika Momtaz and Co- Founder, Mohammed Mohsin. Bangladesh Art Week Dubai is running from September 2021 until November 2021, launching three distinct but related events for the first ever Dubai edition featuring internationally renowned and established artists alongside invited younger artists. The exhibitions encompass sculpture, photography, mixed media construction, site specific installations, works on paper, and film presentations.
Shumon Ahmed’s art and poetry explores the fusion between multiple mediums to create cross pollinations of narratives that while seemingly contradictory, are private yet collective. His approach into combining different mediums is deeply meditative and has also been likened to memory and loss that yield the melancholy and a longing for the uncanny. His work has been previously exhibited in various galleries, festivals, screenings and fairs worldwide, notably at 4A Centre for contemporary Asian, Sydney 2017, Curated_by, at Krinzinger Projekte, Vienna, Austria, 2016, Kochi-Muziris Biennale 2014, India, Dhaka Art Summit (2012,2014,2016), Whitechapel Gallery in London (2010), Fotomuseum, Winterthur, Switzerland (2010), Christies auction house, New York, Frieze art fair New york and London 2017 and a solo exhibition at Project88 (2015). Shumon divides his time between New York, Dhaka and Sylhet and is represented by Project88 Mumbai.
Palash Bhattacharjee entered the scene with a series of performative stocks. Along with photo-video installations based on his performances and site-specific works, he included another important component: sound. He articulates the neural through the experiential, from his early photo and video installations in 2009 to his more recent near-absurd performances and video installations. Since 2011, he's been developing a practice that splits into two distinct but overlapping strands: video and performance. His single-channel or multi-channel videos and performances are the result of his meditations on the body's communion with spatial reality, which are frequently set in a temporal context. As he sets out to restore an event from his life that is both overwhelming and abstract, he reorganizes multiple approaches. He is an artist based in Chittagong, Bangladesh and received his Master's and Bachelor's degrees from Chittagong University's department of Fine Arts in 2010 and 2009.
Marzia Farhana is a visual artist based in Dhaka, Bangladesh. She studied at the Faculty of Fine Arts, University of Dhaka and completed her MA in Fine Arts from Central St Martins, University of the Arts London, where she was awarded a prize for innovation. She has developed hybrid forms of production with different media that include paintings, prints, collage, assemblages of found objects, texts, and moving images. Her projects reinforce alternative education and actions for social change, reflect on environmental destruction caused by humans and analyze the present human condition. She is interested in collaborations, participation, and socially engaged art. One of her large-scale multimedia installations titled Ecocide and the Rise of Free Fall was shown at the Kochi-Muziris Biennale (2018.) Her works have been featured at a number of important museums, galleries and organizations including the Museum of Contemporary Art Barcelona (MACBA), Spain; Office of Contemporary Art (OCA), Oslo, Norway; Krinzinger Projekte, Vienna, Austria; Dhaka Art Summit (2020, 2018, 2016); and the Kathmandu Triennale, (2017). She received residency from Delfina Foundation, London (2018), and the Khoj International Workshop (2017).
Shahria Sharmin is a freelance photographer based in Dhaka, Bangladesh. After doing her Masters in Public Administration from the University of Dhaka, Sharmin pursued her further study at Pathshala South Asian Media Academy in Bangladesh where she became fascinated with the social history of photography and the evolution of identity, sexuality and gender in relationship to material culture. Call me Heena Shahria’s ongoing project, takes her interest in photography’s connection with identity to explore and express the diversity of human experience. In 2014, she was named the second place winner of the Alexia Foundation student grant for her project, Call me Heena. The same work has been selected in Open Society Foundation, Moving Walls 23 group exhibition in 2015. Other awards and honors have included being recognized by International Photographer of the Year IPOTY and Magnum Photography Award (2017). Call me Heena was Shortlisted of the first ever Women Photograph grant (2017) in conjunction with the Pulitzer Center on Crisis Reporting. She has been a participant of World Press Joop Swart Masterclass in 2019.
Munem Wasif’s photography and film investigates complex social and political issues with a humanistic language, by getting close to the people, physically and psychologically, dealing with multiple questions and contradictions. Expressionistic in style and long-term in method, Wasif often experiments beyond the tradition, tests the possibilities of fiction, by borrowing a familiar documentary language. He had exhibitions worldwide including, Center Pompidou, Palais de Tokyo & Visa pour l’image in France, Whitechapel Gallery, Kettle’s Yard & Victoria & Albert museum in England, Museu d’Art Contemporani de in Spain, Musee de Elysee, Musée d’Art et d’Histoire & Fotomuseam, Winterthur in Switzerland, Kunsthal museum & Noordelicht festival in Netherlands, Museum of Modern Art in Poland, Parasite in Hong Kong, The Factory Contemporary Arts Centre in Vitenam, Gwangju biennale in Korea, Singapore biennale in Singapore, Sharjah Biennale in UAE, Asia Pacific Triennial of contemporary art in Australia, and Dhaka Art summit & Chobi Mela in Bangladesh.