Southern Gazette (South Perth) - - LIFESTYLE -

GROWING up a Mus­lim in a post 9/11 Aus­tralia, Vic­to­ria Park res­i­dent Hamida No­vakovich no­ticed a gap was form­ing in so­ci­ety.

No­vakovich re­alised Mus­lims were be­ing called on to rep­re­sent the col­lec­tive group, as op­posed to be­ing viewed as in­di­vid­u­als.

It was this re­al­i­sa­tion that ig­nited the 30year-old’s need to cu­rate an art ex­hi­bi­tion that showed there was more than one Mus­lim ex­pe­ri­ence.

“There’s no doubt that 9/11 rep­re­sented a turn­ing point in the way Is­lam and Mus­lims were viewed in the world,” she said.

“And for my gen­er­a­tion, it was a lot to come to terms with at once.

“With this ex­hi­bi­tion we want to present sto­ries from young Mus­lims whose iden­ti­ties are con­stantly un­fold­ing, just like our Gen Y peers.

“There isn’t just one Mus­lim ex­pe­ri­ence, and this ex­hi­bi­tion aims to make that point.”

The ex­hi­bi­tion- ti­tled HERE&NOW/GEN YM in­ves­ti­gates the cre­ative re­sponses of nine con­tem­po­rary artists whose works are tied to­gether by ex­pe­ri­ences of growing up Mus­lim in Aus­tralia.

The ex­hi­bi­tion spans across two gal­leries with 45 works.

“Any art that comes un­der the cat­e­gory of Is­lamic art seems to be great over­shad­owed by post 9/11,” No­vakovich said.

“So we’re try­ing to use art to build bridges and get away from this idea of ‘us and them’.”

The ex­hi­bi­tion will be open un­til late July and No­vakovich said she was look­ing for­ward to au­di­ence re­sponse.

“My in­ten­tion was to cu­rate the ex­hibit as well as I could and do things that are re­ally true to me,” she said.

“Whether it has an out­come that ig­nites change is up to the au­di­ence, de­pend­ing on what they take away from it.”

Cu­ra­tor Hamida No­vakovich with Prac­ti­cal Magic by Ab­dul Abdullah.

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