Bijan Moosavi’s largest solo exhibition to date centres around Disco Islam a sci-fi quasi-commercial video combining CGI, live-action, Islamic kitsch and music, set in an immersive environment that references club culture, the desert and the language of corporate advertising.
As neoliberalism has become the dominant ideology in late capitalist societies in the West, economic policies prescribed by the International Monetary Fund and the World Bank have been presented as the only way towards growth, freedom and democracy in the Global South and Middle East. Disco Islam: Future Phantasmagoria speculates on a ‘perfect’ neoliberal Middle Eastern future – privatized, deregulated and market oriented – where the aesthetics of advertising and commerce, environmental catastrophe and club culture combine with techno-utopian solutions from Silicon Valley.
Bijan offers a vision of a world where authoritarian Middle Eastern regimes’ human rights violations are traded in favour of international business, local crimes driven by inequalities are solved by hovering ‘killer drones’, restrictions prescribed by Islamic law are addressed by transforming individuals into gender-less avatars, cultural censorship is applied using AI, and environmental disasters are ignored by a private sector obsessed with profit.
Welcome to Disco Islam: A Middle Eastern horror show from the future.