Sunday, May 7, 2017


By Gregory & Ernest Disney-Britton
Abdulnasser Gharem, The Stamp (Moujaz) (2013) (Collection of Los Angeles County Museum of Art)
In Los Angeles, through July 2 is the first solo show in the U.S. by artist and practicing Muslim Abdulnasser Gharem at the Los Angeles County Museum of Art. The display includes both new and older works such as Gharem’s "The Stamp" which has the word moujaz (“permitted”) in the center surrounded by the phrase “In accordance with sharia law” in English and Arabic. His works hint at how theocracies hide their bigotry behind a facade of religious devoutness, and it was on display in LA, as President Trump in DC, signed a ‘Religious Liberty’ Executive Order allowing for broad new exemptions for Christian conservatives. Gharem's stamp of hand carved wood with an embossed rubber facestamp illustrates that God guides us, but our path, "should be a personal and pliable journey open to interpretation rather than a rubber-stamped road."

Today's Prayer: Dear God, we are grateful for artists like Abdulnasser Gharem who use their art to challenge those who seek to impose their religious rules onto others, and who do not embrace God's gift of freedom of choice. 

For other NEWS OF WEEK from across the USA, and around the world, see below:
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From 16 May – 15 June 2017, The Prince’s School of Traditional Arts, in Shoreditch, is exhibiting a life-size, exquisitely hand-painted replica of one of the most beautiful Dunhuang caves, Mogao Cave 3.
The Annunciation to the Shepherds and the Adoration of the Magi (c. 1509–15), attrib. to Giovanni di Nicola di Manzoni dal Colle (active early 16th century). Fitzwilliam Museum, Cambridge
Rubin Museum of Art: "Masterworks of Himalayan Art" (Ends March 26, 2018 ); 150 West 17th St., New York, NY; (212) 620-5000;
"Produce X" (2015-16) by Ibrahim Mahama, a composition of Islamic prayer rugs and cocoa bags
"Sheitels (that’s Yiddish for wigs)" by Ruth Schreiber at the Jewish Museum in Berlin. Courtesy of the artist