At Haverford College, an Exhibition Inspired by a 19th-century Uyghur Poem

The Contest of the Fruits, developed in conversation with Haverford College Assistant Professor of Religion Guangtian Ha, takes a 19th-century Uyghur allegorical poem as the point of departure for investigations into language, politics, religion, humor, resilience, and resistance in a pluralistic world.

The original text is about the ribald rivalry of 13 fruits, including the mulberry, pomegranate, quince, and pear. As the focal point of the exhibition, internationally-renowned art collective Slavs and Tatars have re-interpreted the poem as a Turkic rap battle in their first-ever animated video work. Performative and playful, it is accompanied by new sculptural works also emerging from the syncretic linguistic and ethnographic heritage at the heart of Uyghur culture.

The exhibition is open now through December 12 at Haverford College’s Cantor Fitzgerald Gallery, with additional events and programming in Philadelphia and online and a forthcoming book from MIT Press. All events are free to the public!

View the full range of programming and register at exhibits.haverford.edu.

The Contest of the Fruits was created in collaboration with Slavs and Tatars, Guangtian Ha, Haverford’s Hurford Center for the Arts and Humanities, CAIR Philly, and Twelve Gates Arts and is supported by the Pew Center for Arts & Heritage.

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