Saodat Ismailova’s exhibition “Syncretic Verses”

Adamdar news Uzbekistan

Saodat Ismailova’s exhibition “Syncretic Verses”

April 21, 2018

Tashkent, Uzbekistan

What? Saodat Ismailova’s exhibition “Syncretic Verses”  

Where? Theatre of Mark Vail “Ilkhom” (Tashkent, Uzbekistan)

When? April 21 — May 13, 2018


The Ilkhom Theater, together with the Goethe-Institut in Tashkent, from April 21 to May 13, 2018 presents the exhibition “Syncretic Verses” of the Uzbek video artist and director Saodat Ismailova.

The exhibition “Syncretic Verses” represents to the public of Uzbekistan the work of Saodat Ismailova who shares her life between Paris and Tashkent, for the first time. In her exhibition at Ilkhom theatre, Saodat gives an opportunity to get acquainted with the intimate, cultic rituals of the women of her homeland — Central Asia. This exhibition presents a look at the intimate space of women's spiritual practices, and also reflects on the connection between nature and the female body, and about the presence of female characters in collective memory. In her works she uses various artistic means: video installations, photographs, sculpture.

Saodat Ismailova was born in 1981 in Tashkent. She graduated from the Faculty of Film Directing and Television at the State Institute of Arts. In 1999, she won the Grand Prix of the Tashkent Student Film Festival with her first short film. In 2002, Ismailova was invited to study at  ‘Factory’, the Centre for the Study of Arts, the Faculty of Cinema (Italy). In 2004, her documentary “Aral. Fishing in an Invisible Sea” won a prize for the best picture at the Turin Film Festival (Italy). From 2004 to 2010, Saodat Ismailova created 10 documentary films about the music of Central Asia, released by the Smithsonian Institute (USA). In 2010, Ismailova studied screenwriting and directing art at Robert Redford's Sundance Institute (USA). Her feature film, “40 Days of Silence” (co-production of France (Cinefondation, Cannes Film Festival, Fonds Sud, National Centre of Cinematography), Germany (World Cinema Fund) and Holland (Hubert Bals Fund, Rotterdam Film Fund)) in 2014 was nominated as the best debut film at the International Film Festival in Berlin and won awards at international festivals. In 2013, Ismailova presented her first video installation “Zukhra” at the Venice Biennale, in the pavilion of Central Asia. From 2015 to 2017, Saodat studied at the National Center for Contemporary Art, “Fresno” (France). In 2017 her solo exhibition dedicated to the Turan tiger “The Enchanted” was held at the Centre for Contemporary Art, Tromso, with the support of the Centre for Contemporary Arts (Norway). In 2018, Saodat implemented cross-disciplinary project “Kyrk Kyz”, premiered at the Brooklyn Academy of Music (USA) and the Branly Museum named after Chirac in Paris (France). Ismailova regularly participates in the international Biennale, curatorial exhibitions, film festivals, also taking place within the museums of Europe and Asia.

Currently Saodat is working on her second feature film — “Barzag”, with the support of the Asian Film Foundation from the Busan Film Festival, and the Ubert Bals Foundation from the Rotterdam Film Festival, co-production of Petit Films (France), Rohfilm (Germany).

Her creative development is closely connected with Germany: in 2005 Saodat Ismailova was a guest of the prestigious Berlin program for the support of the art workers of the German Academic Exchange Service (DAAD), where she worked on her film “40 Days of Silence” that tells the story of a young girl who took a vow of silence. In Berlin, she began working with German producer Benny Drechsel (Rohfilm Studio). Saodat received financial support from the World Film Fund at the Berlin Film Festival for making her film. During her next visit to the German capital in 2010, her short film “When the River is silent” was nominated for the Berlin Today Award. At the 64th Berlin Film Festival, Saodat presented “40 Days of Silence” in the Forumofficial program, Art Cinema. In 2014, at her first personal exhibition in Augsburg (Germany),  Ismailova showed video and sound installations. A year later she took part in the exhibition “Faces of Disappearance”, again in Augsburg.

With the support of the Ilkhom Theater and the Goethe-Institut in Uzbekistan, Saodat Ismailova now presents author's selective works in her home city of Tashkent, and through her artistic appeal to the spiritual heritage and the role of this knowledge in the formation of identity, she would like to give impetus to reflection and discussions. The exhibition “Syncretic Verses” will present the works completed in the last five years, with texts from books of ethnographers and anthropologists who have researched Central Asia during the last century. “For me, this exhibition is also a desire to revive interest in the rich heritage of research in Central Asia, represented by such scientists as Snesarev, Basilov, Sukharev and Andreev. I would like to share with the people of Tashkent how I shape my language and vision that lies behind my minimalistic, contemplative works. ”


Theatre of Mark Vail “Ilkhom” 

5 Pakhtakorskaya street



(+ 998 71) 241 22 41 / 241 22 52

The entry to the exhibition is free.


More information about the event is available at Goethe Institut in Tashkent:


Telegram channel

Facebook page 

аnd on Ilkhom Theater's Facebook page.






Published: April 20, 2018