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Contemporary kurdish art


Rozhgar Mustafa

A Kurdish contemporary artist, Rozhgar Mustafa lives and works in Sulaimani, Kurdistan, Iraq. A graduate of College of Fine Arts, University of Sulaimani (BA in painting, 2004), between 2012–2013 she studied at Chelsea College of Arts, University of the Arts London, where she earned an MFA degree. She teaches art at the Institute of Fine Art in Sulaimani. In 2013 in London she was shortlisted by ArtRaker Fund as one of the 20 best artists who work with the subjects of conflict and war.

Mustafa works with different media, including installation, photography, video and public live action. Her main interests include issues of transformation, conflict and gender identity, memory, contradiction, trauma and fear.

In 2009 she was artist-in-residence at the Wyspa Institute of Art in Gdańsk, Poland, on a grant from the Gdańsk Exclusive programme, where she also held a solo exhibition “New Works”. She took part in projects locally and internationally, dealing with the subject of women in public space, art and politics, society and taboo, and corruption. Particularly worth mentioning are: “Sermedy Le 437.072 sq km”, Amna Suraka Museum, Sulaimani (2007); “Dado Exhibition”, SARA building, Sulaimani (2010); “Contemporary Art Irak”, Cornerhouse, Manchester (2010); “Estrangement”, The Showroom, London (2010); “Plastic Women”, solo street action, Sulaimani (2011); “Freedom on the Barricades?”, Växjö Konsthall, Växjö, Sweden (2014); “Videozoom: Kurdistan, Iraq. Small things that matter more”, Museo di Roma in Trastevere, Rome (2015); Alternativa International Contemporary Visual Art Festival in Gdańsk (2011, 2016); “Me and City Hurt Each Other”, The English Hospital, Sulaimani (2017); and „Road through Kurdistan”, P21 Gallery, Kings Cross, London (2019).

In 2020 Mustafa took part in a research art project with the Iraqi artist Hanna Malallah and a group of other female artists, aiming to explore Iraq’s ancient Mesopotamian sites and re-contextualise their history through contemporary art practices. The project resulted in the virtual group exhibition “Co-Existent Ruins: Exploring Iraq’s Mesopotamian Past Through Contemporary Art”, Brunei Gallery, SOAS University of London (2020).

The Ministry of Culture and National Heritage

Co-financed by the Ministry of Culture and National Heritage of the Republic of Poland from the Culture Promotion Fund drawn from fees charged in games under state monopoly, as stipulated in Article 80, section 1 of the Gambling Games Act of the 19th of November 2009

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