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New, immersive installation opens at Islamic Museum of Australia

24 MARCH 2022

MEDIA RELEASE

NEW, IMMERSIVE INSTALLATION OPENS AT ISLAMIC MUSEUM OF AUSTRALIA

A mesmerising, interactive light installation inspired by the medieval Islamic philosophy of illumination opens at the Islamic Museum of Australia today.

Hayakal al Noor, Bodies of Light is the work of Sydney based media installation artist, Narjis Mirza.

The setting of the space in Hayakal al Noor is complete darkness, illuminated by a vivid projection of animated Arabic Huroof (letters), falling on translucent chiffon silk. The Arabic calligraphy is composed of the mysterious and isolated letters of the Quran that do not form words; they have an aesthetic and spiritual significance in Islamic traditions, and appear as small bodies of light.

Museum Founder and Director, Moustafa Fahour OAM said the installation is quite unlike any other visiting exhibition the Museum has previously hosted.

“From the minute you walk through the door, the Hayakal al Noor experience is enveloping. Our senses of sight, touch, sound and smell are immediately engaged,” said Mr Fahour.

“The Museum is thrilled to host the work of a talented artist who is highly regarded in her field of work,” he said.

Artist Narjis Mirza says installation art is helpful in inducing a sense of wonder.

“My installation practice taps into many territories: it’s time based, space based, bodily based and has the potential of creating an experience that can be outside the body,” said Ms Mirza.

“In Hayakal al Noor, that which is seen is further intensified by sound and fragrance.  The viewer may also feel the soft texture of the fabric as they walk through the space,” she said.

Islamic Museum of Australia Curator Dr Mahmoud Mohammed adds that the exhibition will appeal to a wide audience.

“Even without knowing the meaning of the words and Arabic letters, anyone who enters the space will be immersed in the serene atmosphere and meditative experience the exhibition offers.” Said Dr Mohammed.

Hayakal al Noor is on display at the Museum from 24 March – 9 July 2022.

The Islamic Museum of Australia is located in Thornbury, in Melbourne’s north. It is the only Islamic museum in the country and provides educational and cross-cultural experiences for all ages. The Museum is open 10am – 4pm, Monday to Saturday.

– Ends –

Media contact (IMA):

Mei Nee Cheong | Media and Marketing Manager | Islamic Museum of Australia

0414 264 987 | meinee.cheong@islamicmuseum.org.au

Twitter: @islamicmuseum

 

 

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