Mahbub Jokhio: In the city of lost times

  • 9 Feb – 22 Apr 2018
  • Free, no booking required

In the city of lost times was Pakistani artist Mahbub Jokhio‘s first solo show in the UK.

Through photography and film, In the city of lost times considered notions of longing, love, grief and memory; the inseparability of life from death and representations of identity.

Fascinated with public spaces that have a very private dimension, Jokhio’s work has focused on graveyards in Pakistan, which are frequently seen as spaces solely for the dead, and are not often visited beyond funerals and burials.

Mahbub Jokhio suggests they should be places where both the living and the dead can co-exist. His work, which presents images of everyday mundane acts with different characters in graveyards, proposes that these are places where life can not only happen, but is perhaps brighter in contrast to their surroundings.

Jokhio is interested in the nature of images; in their claims to objectivity and their ability to manipulate meaning and perception. He said “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 its 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 was a co-commission with the Karachi Biennale, and work for the exhibition was developed during his residency at Gasworks, London. The exhibition was 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, with all three exhibitions exploring the use of public spaces in a new setting.

Watch our interview with Mahbub Jokhio

Mahbub Jokhio: In the city of lost times