Naseer, Rabbya & Hurmat Ul Ain, White as Snow, 2008
Rabbya Naseer & Hurmat Ul Ain
White as Snow

Rabbya Naseer (*1984, Pakistan) and Hurmat Ul Ain (*1984, Pakistan) are graduates of the oldest school of art in Pakistan, the National College of Arts in Lahore. They have been collaborating since 2008. Their interdisciplinary cooperation began in Pakistan and has continued for some time in the US. Their work comprises the media of painting, sculpture, photography, video and performance and revolves around sounding out shared experiences in the social and cultural sphere of Pakistan. At the heart of their collaboration is the idea of creating a common voice that reflects certain role expectations. While White as Snow refers to more traditional gender roles assigned to women in Pakistan, the series of digital prints Casual Leave (2008) shows the artists in traditional Pakistani clothes in different ‘holiday paradise’ locations and reflects on the relationship between the exotic and the internal and external perception of self.

White as Snow shows the two artists singing a song in Urdu that consists of repetitive, formulaic elements. They are kneeling and swaying back and forth, creating the impression of a ritual. In the song, the artists praise themselves as obedient ‘girls’ who live according to tradition, using an ironic distance to reflect on the role of women in Pakistani society dominated by Islam. KB

Courtesy Rabbya Naseer & Hurmat ul Ain

Document media
Video, colour, sound, 2:16 min

Issue date

music, language, voice, ritual, state oppression