Metropolitan Museum of Art opens The Roof Garden Commission: Imran Qureshi

Metropolitan Museum of Art opens The Roof Garden Commission: Imran Qureshi an exhibition on view May 14–November 3, 2013 (weather permitting).

A large-scale site-specific work of art by Imran Qureshi (b. 1972, Hyderabad, Pakistan)—an artist known for his unique style of combining the motifs, symbolism, and ornamental techniques of Islamic art with modern conceptual approaches—is the 2013 installation on The Iris and B. Gerald Cantor Roof Garden at The Metropolitan Museum of Art, opening May 14. Entitled The Roof Garden Commission: Imran Qureshi, the project represents the artist’s emotional response to violence occurring across the globe in recent decades and his earnest hope for regeneration and lasting peace in the aftermath of man-made disasters. Using the nearly 8,000-square-foot open-air space as his canvas, Qureshi has worked areas of his spilled and splattered red acrylic paint into patterns of lush ornamental leaves that evoke the luxuriant walled gardens that are ubiquitous in miniatures of the Mughal court; they also echo the spectacular verdant foliage of Central Park surrounding the Roof Garden today. Qureshi is the first artist to create a work that will be painted directly onto the Roof’s surface, and visitors will be encouraged to walk on it as they view it.

Born in Hyderabad, Pakistan, in 1972, Imran Qureshi is considered one of the leading figures in developing a contemporary aesthetic that integrates the motifs and rigorous techniques of traditional miniature painting, which flourished in the Mughal courts of the Indian subcontinent at the end of the 16th century, with contemporary themes. Qureshi received his B.A. in Fine Art in 1993 from the National College of Arts in Lahore, where as assistant professor he now teaches new generations of artists. He was named Deutsche Bank’s “Artist of the Year” for 2013 and inaugurated the Deutsche Bank KunstHalle in Berlin last month with a major solo exhibition. He won the 2011 Sharjah Biennial Prize for his installation Blessings Upon the Land of my Love. Qureshi was also one of 15 Pakistani artists featured in the Asia Society exhibition Hanging Fire: Contemporary Art from Pakistan (2009-2010). Solo exhibitions of his work have been held at the Rohtas Gallery in Lahore (2010), Chawkandi Art in Karachi (2010), Corvi-Mora Gallery in London (2007), Canvas Gallery in Karachi (2007), Modern Art Oxford (2007), and Lalit Kala Akademi in New Delhi (2006). His work was also featured at the Singapore Biennale in 2006 and the Sydney Biennale in 2012. The artist lives and works in Lahore.

The installation is featured on the Metropolitan Museum’s website at