Maha Malluh: Hajj, le Pelerinage a la Mecque, Curated by Fahad Abdulkareem, Library of King Abdulaziz, and Omar Saghi, Institut du Monde Arabe, Paris

23 April 2014 - 10 August 2014

Hajj or pilgrimage to Mecca is one of the five pillars of Islam. Hajj must be done on a specific date in the month of Dhu al-Hijjah of the lunar calendar of Islam, but the Umra (minor pilgrimage) can be accomplished throughout the year. Since the introduction of Islam, the Hajj is an occasion for religious meeting, but also social and cultural life of millions of Muslims from different ethnic and geographic origins. The exhibition aims to present the Hajj in its various dimensions and through its historical development context. Individual mystical experience, religious meditation, source of artistic inspiration and cross-cultural exchange are the different facets of the pilgrimage represented in the show. The contemporary dimension is widely present through the look of South Arabian artists on the pilgrimage and the Western eyes are not forgotten crossing themes common to the two civilisations. The exhibition invites the public to discover this ancient but still living practice. Organised in co-production with the Arab World Institute and the National Library of King Abdulaziz in Riyadh, the exhibition ‘Hajj, the Pilgrimage to Mecca’ takes the project of the British Museum, presented in 2012, allowing it to evolve.

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