Studio Jum’ah

Studio Complex, Tate Exchange, London, 2018

Studio Jumah Square Flyer
Flyer design for Studio Jum’ah, Tate Exchange, London, 2018. Credit: Abbas Zahedi

Documentation of Studio Jum’ah for Studio Complex. Tate Exchange, London, 2018. Photos: Anamarija Podrebarac

Sermon of the Technical Image, adapted from the writings of Vilém Flusser by Abbas Zahedi and read by Lara Orawski for Studio Jum’ah, Tate Exchange, Tate Modern, 2018. Courtesy: the artist.

Event copy:

Studio Jum’ah was a re-imagining of the muslim Friday prayer, as a site of contemporary art and knowledge production. Aspects of the prayer relating to participation, structure, hierarchy and pedagogy were adjusted and reconfigured in light of the public institutional setting.

Furthermore, this intervention interrogated the idea of a studio and gallery as sanctified spaces of post-enlightenment modernity; spaces which often function as socially-removed and exclusionary – especially when it comes to diasporic bodies of flesh and praxis.

– Jumanah Moon
– Lara Orawski
– Hassan Vawdah
– Hassen Rasool
– Heiba Lamara
– Sohaib Hassan
– Central Saint Martins

Studio Jum’ah concept map for Studio Complex, Tate Exchange, London, 2018. Credit: Abbas Zahedi

Excerpt from interview with

There have been white and European Muslims from well before this age, so the racial thing is not my point. Although I think it has become easier to essentialise oneself based on the labels that we receive from around us. If someone finds it troublesome to pray in a gallery, I’m really curious to know why they feel that way and what is the process to unpack the underlying assumptions in there? There was a really important text released two years ago called What is Islam? written by the late Shahab Ahmed. This book tries to grapple with the question it poses and presents an argument for an understanding of Islam, where variety and contradiction are at the heart of faith. So with my choice to do a Jum’ah at the Tate, I am trying to situate something as part of that dialogue, where there are these structures at play, but we don’t know what that they mean anymore.