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Past Projects

Mahbub Jokhio: In The City of Lost Times

9 February – 22 April 2018

In The City of Lost Times was Pakistani artist Mahbub Jokhio's first solo show in the UK. Fascinated with public spaces that have a very private dimension, Jokhio's work has focussed on graveyards in Pakistan. Graveyards in Pakistan are frequently seen as spaces solely for the dead, and are not often visited beyond funerals and burials. However, Mahbub Jokhio suggests they should be places where both the living and the dead can co-exist. His work presents images of everyday mundane acts with different characters in graveyards; proposing that these are places where life can not only happen, but is perhaps brighter in contrast to their surroundings. Through photography and film, In The City of Lost Times considers notions of longing, love, grief and memory; the inseparability of life from death and representations of identity.

Mahbub Jokhio is interested in the nature of images; in their claims to objectivity and their ability to manipulate meaning and perception. He says that “when there is no objective reality, images might lie more truthfully”. For Jokhio, an image is like a complex sentence; full of signs, symbols and indexes that could either reveal, conceal or manipulate it's content and context. Working in various mediums his investigations often incorporate irony and dark humour and self-referential critiques that locate and decode the image's capacity to mediate reality.

Mahbub Jokhio's exhibition is a co-commission with the Karachi Biennale, and work for the exhibition was developed during his residency at Gasworks, London. The exhibition is part of the New North and South; a three-year programme of activity across eleven arts organisations from the North of England and South Asia.

In the City of Lost Times coincided with These Silences Are All the Words and The House That Heals the Soul, all three exhibitions explored the use of public spaces in a new setting.

Mahbub Jokhio, For the Love of Her, 2016. Courtesy the artist and The Tetley. Photo by Jules Lister.

Mahbub Jokhio, For the Love of Her, 2016. Courtesy the artist and The Tetley. Photo by Jules Lister.

Mahbub Jokhoi, Fan, 2016. Courtesy the artist and The Tetley. Photo by Jules Lister.

Mahbub Jokhio, Installation shot (2018). Courtest the artist and The Tetley. Photo by Jules Lister.

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