Tandem Project

Faith Travels by Streetcar

Exibition Project

How are faith, norms and freedom related to each other? Does faith necessarily imply a limitation of freedom? How do members of religious and non-religious communities give visibility to their beliefs and how are they perceived from outside?  

Religious and other normative practices structuring and regulating public and private life often involve objects of daily use. The exhibition “Faith travels by Streetcar” focuses on the rules, convictions and conventions of the monotheistic religions – Judaism, Islam and Christianity – as well as on secular beliefs through objects of daily use. The objects relate to norms and rules of food consumption (halal, kosher, vegan as well as to different traditions of fasting and feasting), clothing (men’s and women’s, from different religious and non-religious contexts, such as abaya, thawb, kippa, wig, suits and t-shirts), and children’s education and play, which introduce certain rules and norms to children in a playful way.

The juxtaposition of everyday objects from different religious and non-religious contexts creates a space for associations, inviting the audience to reflect on their own assumptions of the connection between faith and freedom. While showing that rules and norms limiting the freedom of the individual exist in all societies, the items displayed in the exhibition will highlight that these norms and rules are always and everywhere subject to negotiation, dispute and change. The permeability and fluidity between the different spaces will be mirrored in an art installation by Tim Greaves, which allows a sensory, not primarily text-based approach to the subject of the exhibition. Consisting of several intersecting wooden elements, his artwork plays with inside-outside perspectives and changing viewpoints, thus enabling a corporeal experience of the exhibition theme.

The project is realized in two steps: The exhibition catalogue is currently in preparation and will be launched at the exhibition opening in autumn 2021. The precise dates and further information on the exhibition will be announced here in due course.

Disciplines Involved
Anthropology, Art and Art History, Religious Studies, Sociology
Project Title
Faith Travels by Streetcar
Funding Scheme
Tandem Project
Countries Involved
Egypt, Germany
AGYA Publication
Faith Travels by Streetcar
Salvaging Sacred Time: Approaching Islamic Ritual through Byung-Chul Han