Past Event

This conference will focus on the fraught politics of dress and religion in the Montreal and Canadian contexts.

Event: 6 PM
Free Admission

Where: Space D (4th Floor)

DHC/ART Foundation for Contemporary Art in association with London College of Fashion, University of the Arts London, presents:

Faith and Fashion: Religion, Dress and Politics

Farheen HaQ
Yasmin Jiwani
Reina Lewis (Chair)
Cheryl Sim
Jasmin Zine

Reina Lewis, author of Muslim Fashion: Contemporary Style Cultures and professor at London College of Fashion (UAL) brings her Faith and Fashion panel series to Montreal. This evening’s event will focus on the fraught politics of dress and religion in the Montreal and Canadian contexts. The expert panel assembled here considers Muslim women’s dress and its prominence as a national and regional issue in light of the recent national election campaign, the previous provincial government’s proposed Quebec Charter of Values and the current migration of Syrian refugees.

Joining Lewis to discuss the impact of public debates about religiously related dress across the faiths will be DHC/ART curator Cheryl Sim; Professor Jasmin Zine of Wilfrid Laurier University, author of Islam in the Hinterlands: Muslim Cultural Politics in Canada; Professor Yasmin Jiwani of Concordia University, author of Faces of Violence in the Lives of Girls; and media artist Farheen HaQ, whose work explores cultural inscriptions of the body, ritual and gesture.

With time for audience contributions, the event is designed to create a space for different faith/ethnic communities, as well as communities of designers, artists and activists, to discuss freely the pressing and timely topics of religion, dress, fashion and nationality.

To preview past Faith and Fashion discussions, please visit this link:

Please note that the conversation will be in English and will be live-streamed here on this page.

Farheen HaQ was born and raised in the Niagara Region of Southern Ontario. She now makes her home in Victoria, British Columbia, where she has lived and worked for the past 18 years.  Farheen's media based projects explore cultural inscriptions of the body, ritual and gesture. Her practice is informed by her work in relationship, family life, community development, adult education and dance. She received her BA in International Development (1998) from the University of Toronto, her BEd (2000) from the University of Ottawa and her MFA in Visual Arts (2005) from York University. Haq has exhibited her work in galleries and festivals throughout Canada and internationally including New York, Paris, Buenos Aires, Lahore, Hungary, and Romania. Recent exhibitions include Being Home at the Comox Valley Art Gallery in 2015, Fashionality at the McMichael Canadian Art Collection, Collected Resonance at the Art Gallery of Greater Victoria, Pulse Interval at Open Space (Victoria, BC), The Emperor’s New Clothes at the Talwar Gallery (New York City), and Pulse Contemporary Art Fair (Miami, FL). In 2014 HaQ was nominated for the Sobey Art Award.

Yasmin Jiwani is a full Professor in the Department of Communication Studies at Concordia University. Prior to her move to Montreal, she was the Principal Researcher and Executive Coordinator of the FREDA Centre for Research on Violence Against Women and Children, a joint initiative of Simon Fraser University and the University of British Columbia. Dr. Jiwani has published widely in numerous anthologies, and is the author of Discourses of Denial:  Mediations of Race, Gender and Violence (2006)and co-editor of Girlhood, Redefining the Limits (2006), and Faces of Violence in the Lives of Girls (2014)Her work has focused on media representations of race and gender in the context of systemic and intimate violence. Her current work focuses on femicides, and the coverage of Muslim youth in the press.

Reina Lewis is Artscom Centenary Professor of Cultural Studies at the London College of Fashion, University of the Arts London. Her new book Muslim Fashion: Contemporary Style Cultures was published by Duke University Press in 2015. She is also author of Rethinking Orientalism: Women, Travel and the Ottoman Harem (2004), and Gendering Orientalism: Race, Femininity and Representation (1996). She is editor of Modest Fashion: Styling Bodies, Mediating Faith (2013), and with Nancy Micklewright, of Gender, Modernity and Liberty: Middle Eastern and Western Women’s Writings: A Critical Reader (2006), with Sara Mills, of Feminist Postcolonial Theory: A Reader (2003), and, with Peter Horne, of Outlooks: Lesbian and Gay Visual Cultures (1996). Lewis is a frequent media commentator – most recently for the New York Times, BBC World, Huffington Post, BBC Radio 4, BBC Radio1, The Guardian, The Times, Marie-Claire magazine, Elle Brazil,,

Cheryl Sim is Curator at DHC/ART Foundation for Contemporary Art as well as an artist, musician and academic researcher. Stimulated by politically and conceptually engaged works across a variety of forms and genres, her current curatorial research interests include the diaspora condition, screen theory, political economy, clothing as a marker of identity and the use of music in contemporary art. Recent exhibitions include Surface Tension by Valérie Belin and Pièces de résistance by Yinka Shonibare MBE. Her own single-channel video work has been screened at festivals and special events across North America. Musically, she has released a number of CDs as part of ensembles as well as a solo artist, and has performed on multiple occasions at the Festival International de Jazz de Montréal. Cheryl has just completed a PhD in the études et pratiques des arts program at the Université du Québec à Montréal.

Jasmin Zine is Professor of Sociology at Wilfrid Laurier University. Her numerous publications on Islamic feminism and Muslim Women’s Studies and Muslims and education in the Canadian diaspora include, Canadian Islamic Schools: Unraveling the Politics of Faith, Gender, Knowledge and Identity (2008)Islam in the Hinterlands: Muslim Cultural Politics in Canada (2012), and (with Lisa K. Taylor) Muslim Women, Transnational Feminism and the Ethics of Pedagogy: Contested Imaginaries in post-9/11 Cultural Practice (2014). An award-winning education consultant she has worked with the Office for Democratic Institutions and Human Rights at the Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe (ODHIR/OSCE), the Council of Europe, and the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) on developing international guidelines for educators and policy-makers on combating Islamophobia and discrimination against Muslims.

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