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"Return to Kurdistan" by Richard Wilding

Special Viewing of the Exhibition with a Talk by the Photographer Richard Wilding, Creative Director of Gulan

Return to Kurdistan shows Iraqi Kurdistan and Northern Iraq in contemporary photographs by Richard Wilding, alongside historical photographs by Anthony Kersting.

Event details

Richard Wilding's photographs of Iraqi Kurdistan explore the region's ancient civilisation, documenting its religious and ethnic diversity, history of persecution and renewal.

Wilding's subjects include Erbil citadel, which claims to be the world's oldest continuously inhabited city, the Yezidi shrines at Lalish near Mosul and the canals built in 690 BC by King Sennacherib to take water to his famed gardens in Nineveh.  He also documents the legacy of Sadam Hussein's brutal suppression of the Kurds and the current refugee crisis in the region.

Anthony Kersting (1916-2008) visited Northern Iraq and Kurdistan in 1944 and 1946.  His photographs form an important record of minorities such as Assyrian Christians, Jews and Yezidis that inhabited the region.  They also show historical sites in and around Mosul such as Nebi Yunus (Jonah's tomb) that have recently been damaged or destroyed.

Anthony Kersting's photographs have been made available by the Courtauld Institute of Art, London.  This exhibition has been organised by the University of Exeter and Gulan.

Gulan is a UK registered charity formed in 2008 to promote what is best in the culture of the Kurdish people.  Its objective is to help sustain the sense of Kurdish identity and to preserve the heritage of Kurdistan for the benefit of people from all backgrounds.



Institute of Arabic and Islamic Studies, The Street