True to Life? New Photography from the Middle East
7 Jun 2014 – 4 Jan 2015
An exhibition of works loaned from the British Museum and V&A's Art Funded collection of contemporary Middle Eastern photography.
The collection, which was jointly researched and collected by the two museums, features works by emerging and established artists living in the region or in diaspora, from Tunisia to Iran.
Images respond to the social challenges and political upheavals faced by the Middle East over the last 30 years, with the exhibition at Birmingham paying particular attention to issues of migration and the representation of women.
Hassan Hajjaj's multidisciplinary background as a fashion and furniture designer is evident in his photographs, for which he constructs handmade frames from recycled materials such as tyres and brightly packaged consumer goods. Global brands such as Nike and Louis Vuitton appear within his photographs as well, creating a surprising juxtaposition with more traditional motifs such as the veil.