Islamic Art

Alhamdu | Muslim Futurism

The MIPSTERZ exhibition championed Muslim creatives and steps towards a joyous Muslim future

Rosalind Noor
3 min readJun 15, 2023

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Image courtesy of MIPSTERZ

The Alhamdu | Muslim Futurism exhibition was an evolving experiential art exhibition created by the MIPSTERZ collective, exploring “Muslim Futurism” and imagining a broader Muslim future free from the oppression of today.

Aiming to create space for Muslims to authentically and unapologetically represent their creative imaginations where narratives could be crafted and artistic visions contextualised, the exhibition provided a rare opportunity in the contemporary exhibition landscape. Supported by the Doris Duke Foundation for Islamic Art, The Rubenstein’s Arts Centre at Duke University, Duke Arts, the Centre for Afrofuturist Studies and Colorado College, the Alhamdu | Muslim Futurism exhibition was curated through a collaborative process composed entirely of Muslim voices and featured the work of 150 Muslim artists. The exhibition reflected five core themes of identity, community, resistance, liberation and imagination.

AMINE NAIMA, top: UNTITLED 14, 2021, bottom: UNTITLED 15, 2021, ACRYLIC ON CANVAS, 23.62” X 23.62” | Image courtesy of MIPSTERZ

Artist Amine Naima takes inspiration from the geometrical grammar of his Arab-Berber and African culture and the world around him: from the old town’s streets, a local carpet shop or a ceramic object. Naima sees hidden meanings and connections in geometry, with the underlying structures proving that simplicity lies at the base of everything, no matter how complicated something seems. By not attaching verbal messages to his work, Naima allows the viewer to develop their own interpretations based on their own subjectivity and knowledge.

Other works included Saks Afridi’s Insider, Outsider, which interrogates his sense of being an outsider ideologically in Pakistan, the country of his birth, to his intermittent sense of being ‘alien’ in his adopted home of New York. This sense of alienation is demonstrated by the large UFO woven into the traditional woollen rug, foreign to the traditional motifs surrounding it but made of the same substance. Samira Idroos also used carpets to convey her ideas, studying the boundaries of history…

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Rosalind Noor

Doctor, Tutor of Islamic/Global Art History, Calligrapher's apprentice. Currently studying: MA Islamic Studies, GradDip Classical Arabic, GradCert Asian Art.