Institute of Advanced Studies (IAS)


IAS Laughter: Laughter as a Political Tool - Zunar in Malaysia, an exhibition

14 January 2019–23 January 2019, 9:00 am–8:00 pm


Cartoonist Zunar is an important figure in Malaysian political life. He has spoken out on corruption, on LGBT rights, on indigenous rights, and colonialism, all through his peaceful use of art in the form of humorous cartoons. As part of the IAS research on the theme of Laughter, we will be holding an exhibition with a selection of Zunar’s artworks and responses from UCL academics: Alena Ledeneva (SSEES, UCL), Natasha Eaton (History of Art, UCL), Jeff Howard (Political Science, UCL), and Tariq Jazeel (Geography, UCL). Curated by Alice Rudge (IAS) and Albert Brenchat (IAS).

This event is free.

Event Information

Open to





Alice Rudge; Albert Brenchat


North Cloisters
Wilkins Building, UCL
United Kingdom

Under the previous government, who were recently voted out, his art was labelled seditious, he was arrested, and had much of his art destroyed. This exhibition will showcase Zunar’s artworks that aim to face of corruption, lies and scandal through humour and laughter. These are urgent issues relevant not only to Malaysia, but globally - particularly in the age of post-truth, where accusations of corruption and collusion seem to have little purchase.

Zunar will be speaking at the IAS on January 17, 2019. This will be followed by a reception at the North Cloisters. Please find more information here.

You can find the curatorial statement here

All welcome. Please note that there may be photography and/or audio recording at some events. Please follow this FAQ link for more information.

Image: Zunar, Self Portrait

This a joint IAS/Grand Challenges supported initiative.

Grand Challenges
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