Light from the Middle East: New Photography

The V&A's Light from the Middle East exhibition is the first major museum display of contemporary photography from and about the Middle East. It will feature more than 90 works by some of the most exciting artists from a region spanning North Africa to Central Asia.

Through the lenses of over 30 artists, the aspirations, conflicts and socio-political concerns of the region are interrogated through a range of photographic techniques and approaches. The exhibition was made possible through the Art Fund Collection of Middle Eastern Photography at the V&A and the British Museum, funded through an Art Fund grant of over £150,000. Most of the works on display in the exhibition were acquired as part of this unique collaboration. The exhibition is at the V&A from 13 November to 7 April 2013 and is free to all.

The numbers below indicate the number of artists in a particular country. Click to discover more about the works and listen to an audio introduction to some of the key artists.
You can also filter the map by the three exhibition themes of Resisting, Recording and Reframing.


The exhibition is divided into three thematic sections:

Working in a variety of contexts and using a range of techniques, artists in this section exploit, explore and question the camera's capacity to record.

Artists in this section interrogate conflicts between past and present, East and West, fact and fiction to reframe the aesthetic language of their cultural landscape.

The final section of the exhibition sees artists question the idea that a photograph can tell the truth and presents a resistance to the medium's claim to accuracy and authority.


Filter map by exhibition theme:

  • Resisting
  • Recording
  • Reframing