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Imran Qureshi: Where the Shadows are so Deep - FAD Magazine

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Imran Qureshi: Where the Shadows are so Deep

Imran Qureshi - Where the Shadows are so Deep 18 February – 10 July 2016 Photo by Tristan Fewings_Getty Images Courtesy Barbican Art Gallery
Imran Qureshi – Where the Shadows are so Deep 18 February – 10 July 2016 Photo by Tristan Fewings_Getty Images Courtesy Barbican Art Gallery

The walls of Barbican are splattered with blood. This alarming sight greets the eyes at first glance in the dimly lit space of the Barbican’s Curve gallery. Only it isn’t blood, which becomes clear on closer inspection, its paint. It oozes from the walls, as if organs filled with paint have been flung at the walls. Paint feels like it drips down onto the floor of the gallery, telling a story of bloody, painterly murder. Hung on these walls, often not escaping the splatter are miniature paintings. These delicate works glisten like jewels, in part due to the dramatic lighting but also to the exquisite gold colours used.

The beauty of the architecture of the Curve is that the visitor never knows what is around the corner. Qureshi has used this in a simplistic and beautiful way. The lighting in the Curve, apart from that used to create the glowing effect on the framed paintings, gets progressively darker. The paint splatters on the walls now moves to the floor. The action also gets more violent, leaving more paint on the floor of the gallery. However a layer of delicate white flowers and patterns are painted over the blood red, creating a layer of intricacy over the gory murder scene. This demonstrates Qureshi’s playful approach to narrative and influence of the historic craft of miniature painting and ornamental traditions. Qureshi uses the history of Indian and Persian miniatures as a space for social commentary.

Imran Qureshi- Where the Shadows are so Deep 18 February – 10 July 2016 Photo by Tristan Fewings_Getty Images Courtesy Barbican Art Gallery
Imran Qureshi- Where the Shadows are so Deep 18 February – 10 July 2016 Photo by Tristan Fewings_Getty Images Courtesy Barbican Art Gallery

What is incredibly interesting is the emotional roller coaster Imran Qureshi takes the viewer on. From uncovering violently splattered paint in a dimly lit space to being captivated by beautiful miniature works, Qureshi takes the viewer through a violent and delicate journey through the space.

Imran Qureshi: Where the Shadows are so Deep is at the Barbican until 10th July
www.barbican.org.uk

Imran Qureshi- Where the Shadows are so Deep 18 February – 10 July 2016 Photo by Tristan Fewings_Getty Images Courtesy Barbican Art Gallery
Imran Qureshi- Where the Shadows are so Deep 18 February – 10 July 2016 Photo by Tristan Fewings_Getty Images Courtesy Barbican Art Gallery

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