Discover a multi-layered artwork created exclusively for – and made on-site in – the Aga Khan Museum. Watch Syrian-Armenian visual artist Kevork Mourad’s unique painting and printing process live, periodically from January 31 to February 12, in the temporary exhibition galleries on the Museum’s second floor, and view the completed artwork from February 13 to 24.
Kevork Mourad is internationally acclaimed for his fusion of printmaking, animation, and collaborative performance that bears witness to painful and continuing histories. His work is an act of remembering and a profound expression of creativity in the face of tragedy.
The Museum as Studio: Kevork Mourad in Residence at the Aga Khan Museum marks his third engagement with the Museum. In 2016, for the performance Home Within, he collaborated with Syrian composer/clarinetist Kinan Azmeh, art and music developing in juxtaposition to create an impressionistic reflection on Syria's recent history.
In 2017, for the Aga Khan Museum exhibition Syrian Symphony: New Compositions in Sight and Sound, Mourad collaborated with Azmeh on an artwork exploring displacement, using the technique of “spontaneous painting” to respond creatively to Azmeh’s music.
The Museum as Studio: Kevork Mourad in Residence at the Aga Khan Museum will be made with the collaboration of post-secondary students, and will be relocated to different temporary galleries within the Museum, evoking the constancy of change.
Kevork Mourad was born in Qamishli, a town in northeastern Syria. Of Armenian heritage, he received his Master of Fine Arts from the Yerevan Institute of Fine Arts in Armenia, and now lives and works in New York. With his technique of spontaneous painting, where he shares the stage with musicians—a collaboration in which art and music develop in counterpoint to each other—he has worked with many world-renowned musicians, including Kinan Azmeh, Brooklyn Rider, Ken Ueno, Liubo Borissov, and Issam Rafea. Mourad is a member, as a visual artist, of Yo-Yo Ma’s Silk Road Ensemble. He has performed, among others, at the Brooklyn Museum of Art, The Bronx Museum of Art, Rhode Island School of Design, Harvard University, the Morgenland Festival, Lincoln Center Atrium, the Art Institute of Chicago, the American Museum of Natural History, the Metropolitan Museum of Art, Central Park’s Summerstage, the Nara Museum in Japan, the ElbPhilharmonie in Hamburg, and Le Festival du Monde Arabe in Montreal, as well as the Aga Khan Museum in Toronto. His digital piece The Map of Future Movements toured as part of a group exhibition in Jerusalem and Ramallah, and was featured in the 2010 Liverpool Biennial. As a teaching artist with Silkroad, he has worked with public school students throughout the five boroughs of New York.