Abdullah Qureshi (born 1987, Lahore, Pakistan) is a multidisciplinary artist, curator, and educator. Rooted in traditions of abstraction, he incorporates gestural, poetic, and hybrid methodologies to address autobiography, trauma, and sexuality through painting, filmmaking, and immersive events.
Drawing from childhood memories, everyday surroundings, and intimate encounters, interior objects, abstract landscapes, and faceless portraits are recurring themes in his two-dimensional work. In moving image and durational projects, Qureshi situates artistic concerns from the personal into more expansive conversations on critical histories, visual culture, and social justice. His films take a camp performance-based approach to portray scenes, symbols, and non-linear narratives that extend his visual language, questions on identity, and queer genealogies outside the Western canon.
Working with long-term collaborators, Qureshi’s curating, cultural programming, pedagogy, and writings further articulate his inquiries in feminist, LGBTIQ2S+, decolonial, anti-racist, and migratory discourses. Centering Black and People of Colour perspectives, he engages collective modes of creative thinking, organisation, and production. Through his ongoing doctoral project, Mythological Migrations: Imagining Queer Muslim Utopias, he examines formations of queer identity and resistance in Muslim migratory contexts.
Looking inward and outward is Qureshi’s third solo exhibition in Karachi and consists of paintings created in Toronto and Lahore between 2021 - 2022. The title and various images in the show reference Audre Lorde’s poems, Who Said It Was Simple (1973), A Litany for Survival (1978), and Never to Dream of Spiders (1997).
Qureshi’s work has been exhibited internationally and he has conducted lectures, paper readings, and artist talks around the world. In 2017, Qureshi received the Art and International Cooperation fellowship at Zurich University of the Arts, and in 2018, a research fellowship at the Center for Arts, Design, and Social Research, Boston. In 2019, he joined the Centre for Feminist Research, York University, Toronto as a visiting graduate student. Qureshi is currently a Doctoral Candidate at Aalto University, Espoo, and Lecturer in Fine Art: Contemporary Practices at Northumbria University, Newcastle upon Tyne.