Langlands & Bell (Ben Langlands and Nikki Bell)
Great Mosque, Samarra, Iraq 1996

Artwork details

Great Mosque, Samarra, Iraq
Date 1996
Medium Blind embossed print on paper
Dimensions Image: 760 x 720 mm
frame: 865 x 825 x 37 mm
Acquisition Purchased 1997
Not on display

Display caption

'We shape our buildings, and thereafter they shape us,' say Langlands & Bell, a couple who work together, making art that explores the impact of architectural structures upon human behaviour. In their series Enclosure and Identity, the artists examine institutional and potentially oppressive buildings, such as prisons, churches and mosques.

Each sheet has been embossed with the ground plan of a famous mosque, giving the images a three-dimensional, almost sculptural quality. The artists focus on the geometry of the religious building, which they see as 'a structure where the spiritual dimensions of a community take physical form'. These prints were acquired on the occasion of their 1997 exhibition at London's Serpentine Gallery, which brought the artists to international attention.

August 2004