Naeem Mohaiemen

Naeem Mohaiemen (*1969 in London, GB) is a historian and visual artist working in Dhaka and New York. He uses photography and film to explore histories of the international left and failed utopias. Since 2006, he has worked on The Young Man Was, a history of 1970s Bangladesh, parts of which have been shown at Kunsthalle Gwangju and the Sharjah Biennial. His work Live True Life or Die Trying (2009), which is exhibited now at Heidelberger Kunstverein, meditates upon the ways by which his camera, “soaked in bias and sympathy”, might alter his documentation of two different protest rallies, which took place in on the same day in Dhaka in early 2009. Mohaiemen’s works were presented as part of the Whitney Biennale of American Art 2006, and were exhibited i.a. in the L’institut des cultures d’Islam in Paris (2011). In summer 2017 he took part in the documenta 14.


›Naeem Mohaiemen sees the protagonists of his works as a means to dispute the structures of the ›global history‹ (Samuel Moyn) and thereby, he creates a sort of meta-archive. The artist and writer Mohaiemen was born in London in 1969. His projects explore the history of the south-Asian regions with their intersections and connect the riots, as well as the 1971 war in Bangladesh, to the results of the lack of awareness in the context of global solidarity. Their composition is based on the personal stories, which are the point of intersection between family observations and popular cultural understanding of history. Mohaiemen’s protagonists act as a sort of carriers and companions of the development of official chronicles: revolutionists, novelists, counterspies, martyrs, theorists. ‹ (Sources: Natasha Ginwala;
More information is to be found on the artist’s website: