Sufi Week at Goethe Karachi
During a phase when the country is at target of some unfortunate incidents, Goethe-Institut Karachi with efforts of it’s Director recently celebrated Sufi Week which tried to create awareness and discourse about a softer and peaceful dimensions of Islam.
It started with an exhibition titled ‘Troubadours of Allah’. The pictures of this collection were shot by Horst A. Friedrichs in the Indus Valley, Sindh and displayed Sufi Musicians of the region. Images are a good mix of documentation of not only the sufi shrines and artists but also aesthetics, material culture and symbols.
Some of the images depict interesting moments including ‘a fakir wearing kajal in his eyes‘, and ‘an image with carvings focused while a person praying is in a shallow focus’. The placement of the photographs could have been more properly planned to illustrate an essay and some pictures with long exposure did remove details. There was also grain in some of the prints. Out of few long exposure shots, only one picture pleased my eye, that of ‘two static almost marrying sitars with movement of people behind’. The exhibition is opened till 20th November 2009 for public.
Next was the Sufi Concert where the audience got chance to hear the soulful voices of Abida Parveen from Pakistan and Fareeda Parveen from Bangladesh who sang awe-inspiring poetry of various Sufi Poets.
It was followed by a lecture session next day where Dr Jurgen Wasim Frembgen, Omar Kasmani, Dr. Durre Ahmed and Peter Panke shared their views about Sufism.