Sir Mark Jones: I am delighted to welcome you here this evening to the presentation of the Jameel Prize. This prestigious, new international art prize which will be awarded every two years promotes and celebrates the very best in contemporary art which has been inspired by the Islamic traditions of craft and design. Its aim is to raise awareness of the thriving interaction between contemporary visual art and the rich heritage of Islam.
So the winner is Afruz Amighi.
Afruz Amighi: Well the title is a good place to start, it is called A Thousand and One Pages. If there were to be a piece of architecture or a monument that could embody the political history of a country, that’s really what this piece is about.
Interviewer: It’s a hanging piece isn’t it? Perhaps you could just describe it physically for us?
Afruz Amighi: It’s a piece of plastic fabric and it’s most common use is actually that it’s been used to fabricate tents in refugee camps and it’s a fabric which I used to cut by hand many, many, many images and designs on the piece and it acts almost like a photographic negative. I removed and removed and removed material and then I illuminate the hanging fabric and it casts a shadow of the pattern that I’ve carved into it on the wall behind it.
The piece itself, is really, it’s almost kind of like, it’s very easy, I’m almost copying what I grew up with because I grew up in houses in the United States in which the walls were all covered in rugs, hanging from the walls and I think that’s really where a lot of the inspiration for this piece came from.