Tasawar Bashir is creating a 21st century Shrine to celebrate and honour Mohammed Rafi, the legendary Indian/Hindi cinema playback singer. The Shrine will be a portable perspex based sound system ideal for festivals and exhibitions.
The shrine has dimensions similar to those of traditional Islamic shrines, built from 24 clear Perspex 'ribs' held together by interwoven cables. The shrine has been created from transparent materials to emphasise that it is accessible to all, and to encourage people who may not be familiar with Islamic ideas, or indeed Mohammed Rafi, to visit the shrine. The theme of changing perceptions will be further emphasised by pieces of elaborate Square Kufic calligraphy that look Arabic from a distance, but upon closer inspection actually spell 'Mohammed Rafi' in English.
The shrine's transparency enables it to be saturated with images and light, and as the space is ambiguous it enables people within the shrine to react with the environment. Artist Tasawar Bashir said: "Although static, the shrine will be a dynamic space in terms of the range of emotions visitors will experience. The type of song Mohammed Rafi is singing, the weather and the environment are all factors that will influence how visitors interact with the shrine."
Mohammed Rafi (1924 1980) is regarded as greatest ever Hindi male playback singer in Indian cinema he provided the vocals for Bollywood actors to mime to rising from humble beginnings to achieve unmatched success. In a career that spanned over 40 years, Rafi sang over 26,000 songs in all the national languages of India, and achieved success across many genres of Asian music. His voice, which possesses unrivalled tonal quality and range, with the power to pitch lyrics from the lowest modulations to high soprano, is unique and instantly recognisable amongst his legions of fans