Moonis Ahmad (b.1992) born in Kashmir is an artist whose practice transverses various media such as installation, sculpture, programming, sound and video. His work through the intersection of art, philosophical speculation and historical enquiry seeks to contemplate the emergence of new worlds and heretical flights of time and objects to critically address the questions of territory, language, belonging, gatherings and borders. He has shown his work at various exhibitions nationally and internationally such as “Anarchic Archive: Spectres of Inconsistency” 2021 at The Margaret Lawrence Gallery, Melbourne, Australia 2021; “Can you hear my Voice” at The Margaret Lawrence Gallery, Melbourne, Australia, 2021; “Atlas Holding the Heavens” at Vadhera Contemporary, New Delhi, India 2019; “De/ceasing Relevance: Figuring the Local” at Sattlekamer, Bern, Switzerland 2018; “Beyond Boundaries”, at Auckland Art Fair in New-Zealand, 2018; “A Million Mutinies Later – India at 70”, at Turner House, Cardiff, UK; De-ceasing Archive, Post-Graduate Gallery Elizabeth Murdoch Building, University of Melbourne Australia, 2018; “Games of Chance”, curated by Leandre D’Souza at Goa Centre of Arts, India 2019; “Critical Constellations”, at IGNCA in India, 2019; Counter-Memories at Rohtas Gallery, Pakistan, 2017; “Sleepless Constellations” at 1×1 Gallery, Dubai 2017; “Bureaucracies of Imagination” at Canvas Gallery, Pakistan, 2017; “Boxed Light” at Mars Gallery, Australia 2018, amongst many others. He has also participated in various residential programmes such as “The Shifting Place: Understanding Territorialities: Identity, Place & Possession” at UNIDEE, Cittadelarte, Italy 2016, Three-month Residency at Stadtgalerie, Bern & HSLU, Luzern Switzerland organized by Pro Helvetia Swiss Arts Council. Moonis was a speaker alongside Raqs Media Collective in Rebordering the Archipelago: Asia Pacific Exchanges, presented by the Centre of Visual Art, University of Melbourne In Association with the Asia Pacific Artistic Research Network. He is a recipient of the Foundation of Indian Contemporary Art’s Emerging Artist Award, 2017-18. Currently, he is a Doctoral Candidate and a Sessional Lecturer at the University of Melbourne and is a recipient of the Australian Graduate Research and Training Programme scholarship. He lives and works between Kashmir and Melbourne, Australia.
(Art Critic, Curator, Artist)
“The distinction between a compulsive liar and a fiction writer is of intention; the former seeks to cheat others by projecting falsehood as truth, whereas the latter offers his narrative as ‘invented’ even if it is derived from reality. However, the success of both lies in how the two are capable to convey a feeling of factuality in their imagined accounts. Moonis Ahmad seems to have achieved this.”
His independence and highly developed sense of social justice, metaphor and meaning, give him an unusual sophistication for his age. As an artist, Moonis creates multi disciplinary works, which traverse video, image, objects, mechanics and courageously: silence. This particularly illuminates his interest in historical erasure. Despite the subject Moonis engages with, he has a highly developed understanding of the absurd and his work often combines a number of elements in an eccentric and humorous way, using irony to critique structures of power.
(Director University of Ideas)
Moonis has engaged brilliantly in creative and critical discourse investigating the relationship between arts and the public sphere, and working at the intersection of artistic practice and academic research.