This travelling exhibition commemorates over 50 years of immigration of Shi’a Imami Ismaili Muslims to Canada, the people for which His Highness the Aga Khan serves as spiritual leader. The travelling exhibition showcases the courage and resilience of the countless Ismaili Muslims who fled their homelands in search of refuge elsewhere, sharing their stories on what fleeing their homes and settling in Canada has meant to them.
With hundreds of family photographs, first-hand accounts, historical documents, and personal interviews, the exhibition immerses you in the events that took place in East Africa in the early 1970s that led to the first mass immigration of over 6,000 Ismaili Muslims to Canada. The exhibition also explores recent immigration stories of other Ismaili newcomers from Syria, Afghanistan, Tajikistan, India, Pakistan, and beyond.
50 Years of Migration is presented by the Aga Khan Council for Canada in collaboration with award-winning Canadian artist Aquil Virani. It debuted at the Aga Khan Museum earlier this year, and will continue to tour Jamatkhanas (places of Ismaili communion and prayer) and Ismaili community spaces across Canada.
Click here for more insight into the inspiration behind the exhibition from Creative Director Aquil Virani.
The exhibition will be on display at the Ismaili Centre, Toronto, from February 26 to March 5. It will be open to the public from 2–5 pm on March 4 and 5.
Don't miss a special event presented as part of the 50 Years of Migration exhibition at the Ismaili Centre, Toronto, on Saturday, Mar 4, 2023 from 7:30–9:30 pm. Enjoy a diverse performance showcase that complements migration stories depicted in the exhibition, hear from artist and creative director Aquil Virani, and enjoy refreshments while exploring the exhibition with friends and family, including many guests whose own stories are captured in the exhibition.
Register for the showcase.
Click here for exhibition hours.
Aquil Virani is a self-taught Canadian visual artist who was born in Vancouver, raised in Surrey, and is now based in Toronto. He makes socially conscious art that involves audience participation and uses art as a tool for social change.
Virani was appointed as the Creative Director for this exhibition after serving as the artist-in-residence at the Canadian Museum of Immigration this past year. He led the research, conceptual development, graphic design and audio editing of this exhibition.