Agil Abdullayev             Works       Info
In this three-channel video, trees are both trusted and protective protagonists. Radicals Between Trees and Dicks, the title of the installation, is the first artistic outcome of several years of research into queer cruising culture in Azerbaijan and some neighboring countries in the Caucasus region and Central Asia. The term “cruising” refers to the pursuit of sexual encounters between homosexual men in public spaces, such as parks, or discreetly designated private spaces. Over the past five years, Abdullayev has traveled and personally visited around thirty such sex spaces in the above-mentioned regions, documenting their own observations and recording the experiences of others in interviews, conversations and visual recordings. The research dealt with the various facets of cruising in profoundly repressive societies in which homosexuality is still highly taboo and people are exposed to severe discrimination and violence due to their sexual orientation.

Rewriting childhood (with Farhad Farzali)

Duo show at Gazelli Art House Baku
Abdullayev uses the gallery’s exhibition space to create a dreamlike reimagining of his childhood bedroom. Using mythological creatures such as unicorns and mermaids, the artist plays his younger self: a young boy searching for ways to flourish in an often hostile neighbourhood and culture. Drawing from his personal experiences of growing up in a minuscule house amongst a family of five, Abdullayev will present an idyllic recreation of his actual childhood bedroom - a single bed located in their family kitchen - in which he lacked space to decorate with stickers, posters or memorabilia.

If sun sees you

Full HD, color and sound, 18 min

Inspired by Nizami's HAFT PAYKAR (7 Beauties) and set against the cultural backdrop of Azerbaijan, a poetic exploration of queerness unfolds. The film reimagines Nizami's original poem, infusing it with a modern twist that delves into the multifaceted realms of history, sexuality, architecture, and cultural commodification through a queer lens.

Allies wear a rainbow pin

Full HD, color and sound, 18 min
Examining queer allyship as a part of social responsibility and evolving into a post-discriminative future. The film reimagines azerifuturism within the dialogues of four friends, concerning a post-class privileges-based future. The film incorporates two dialogues accompanied by characters introduction in poetic language, which emphasize the concept of privilege in the first part, and discrimination in the second part attempting to find a balance in the form of allyship and refers to social and cultural codes of the local society.

PINK CITY in two parts, presents a vision of a utopian escape from societal violence and discrimination, offering a poignant commentary on the longing for a safe, inclusive world. They explore the concept of refuge as a physical space and a transformative experience that reshapes identity and community. The duology emphasizes the contrast between the cold, fear-driven environment of the outer world and the warm, nurturing embrace of the Pink City. Through powerful visual metaphors and emotional narratives, the films challenge viewers to reconsider the structures of their realities and how digital and personal spaces can be reimagined to offer true security and belonging. "Pink City I" and "Pink City II" are an evocative call to envision and create spaces where safety and freedom are aspirations and lived experiences for queer people from Azerbaijan.