Visitor Talk: Shaheen Kasmani
From Charmaine Edwards
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Reclaiming the Narrative
We are often told what art is and isn’t, what’s good and bad, what systems of knowledge and experiences and are worthy, and what is defined as culture, canon, and history. But what does it mean when we come from outside of those systems, and see
the world in a different way? We are made of memories, and our stories are what we get to pass on to the next generation. Artist Shaheen Kasmani will be speaking about her journey through art, education, heritage and reclaiming narratives, sharing her learnings and some of the stories behind her work, and probably asking the audience more questions than providing answers.
Shaheen Kasmani is an educator, curator, producer, and artist who specializes in Islamic art and pattern making, using paper and textiles, principally using traditional patterns and motifs, in both conventional and contemporary contexts. Shaheen’s work forms part of a story; it could be celebrating something long forgotten, exploring a theme or idea, or a reclamation of the narrative from those who have hijacked or imposed their own upon others. Her research is based in history, heritage, culture and conversation, and being ok with making people uncomfortable. Shaheen has previously co-curated The Past is Now at Birmingham Museum, and produced literature festivals and publications.