Mosques in Germany
Inauguration & Expert Talk: April 25
Ongoing: April 26-May 5
Kalakriti Art Gallery
The increasing number of mosques in Germany is a sign of religious self-consciousness and successful integration, yet also a reason for many controversies.
Approximately 3.5 million Muslims are currently living in Germany and since the 70s almost 2600 Islamic sacral buildings have been created all over the country. German mosques today are symbolizing a decades-long history of immigration but also its omissions. They demonstrate the presence and self-confidence of Muslim immigrants in Germany: We are building because we want to stay! This unsettles the way the majority of Germans sees itself and the way it is seen by the Islamic minority, stimulation debate on the position of Muslims within German society and the importance accorded them by the majority. The Stuttgart based photographer Wilfried Dechau has travelled through Germany, not only to take pictures of mosques buildings and their interior architecture but also of their socio-political context.
In Germany there are ever more mosques, and the discourse on mosques and Muslims is becoming more and more frequent. In such a context cultural understanding and openness are fundamental. The photo exhibition Mosques in Germany by Wilfried Dechau is one good example of how people can get to know more about communities, religions and cultures that are our neighbours.
About Wilfried Dechau:
Wilfried Dechau was born in 1944 in Lübeck. After completing his architect degree he worked for several years as assistant at the TU Braunschweig. Since 1980 he is working with the db-Redaktion, which he is directing from 1987 as chief editor. Since 1995 he is teaching at FH Biberach.
The photographer has traveled extensively in Germany in the past year in Germany, in order to take stills of the houses of God of Islam within the context of German architectures: their internal architecture, the Friday prayer, Imams, children, men and women. The photograph Wilfried Dechau has visited very differing mosques in Pforzheim, Penzberg, Mannheim, Wolfsburg, Aachen, Karlsruhe, Hamburg and Stuttgart for this reportage.
In order to make this a comprehensive experience, an expert talk by Mr. Qadeer Khwaja, Assistant Professor, Henry Martin Institute, Hyderabad, will further enlighten the public on the subject.