Azerbaijan is currently gearing up for hosting the Eurovision Song Contest in Baku, Saturday, May 26th, a privilege - or'fate' depending on your view on the contest - bestowed on them after their triumph in last year"s edition.
But for those who are looking for a slightly more cerebral artistic offering coming out of the Azerbaijani capital Baku, you need look no further than Rashad Alakbarov, a skilful sculptor of shadow and light.
Since Alakbarov graduated from Baku"s Faculty of Decorative Arts at the Azerbaijan State Academy of Fine Art in 2001, he has dabbled in painting, theatre decorations, video art and architectural design.
But some of Alakbarov"s best work has been his installation art pieces that use shadow and light to very impressive effect.
Alakbarov gathers everyday objects – sometimes solid, sometimes translucent – to block and manipulate light projected against them to create landscapes, cityscapes, portraits and text-centred "paintings".
'Looking at two cities from one point of view' by Rashad Alakbarov
His "Looking at two cities from one point of view" piece uses two light sources to project an eastern city with mosque on one wall, and a western city with skyscrapers on another.
Plastik portret by Rashad Alakbarov
"Plastik portret" uses suspended plastic bottles to create a charcoal-like portrait of one of Alakbarov"s friends.
'Crisis Haha' by Rashad Alakbarov
And "Crisis Haha" sees the same structure of metal pipes form two different words – "Crisis" and "Haha" – when light is shone against it from two different angles.
Alakbarov"s work is reminiscent of pieces created by British artists Tim Noble and Sue Webster, though this pair"s creations tend to have a darker feel to them.
Noble and Webster work as a collaborative partnership and are linked with the "post-YBA" generation of artists who have emerged over the last decade, following on from the Young British Artists of the 1990s such as Damien Hirst, Tracey Emin and the like.
It could be said that Noble and Webster"s shadow sculptures are a load of rubbish – quite literally – since they incorporate various materials including household waste and scrap metal, in addition to taxidermy animals.
When a light projector is pointed onto these assemblages from a certain angle, they are transformed into immediately recognisable shadow profiles that play on "perceptual psychology" such as that tested in Rorschach inkblot tests.
'Sunset over Manhattan' by Noble and Webster
Here we feature four of Noble and Webster"s artworks. "Sunset over Manhattan" made from cigarette packets and tin cans with holes shot by air gun pellets, all placed on a wooden bench.
'Dirty White Trash' by Noble and Webster
"Dirty White Trash (With Gulls)" puts to good use trash collected by the artists over a six-month period, in combination with two stuffed seagulls.
"Metal ....ing Rats" by Noble and Webster
"Metal ....ing Rats" is a depiction of two randy rodents created from projecting light at welded scrap metal. Taking the scrap metal on its own, it really is difficult to see how such an accurate silhouette could be created.
'Wasted Youth' by Noble and Webster
Finally, piles of replica food and packaging from McDonalds food, plus wood, have been used brilliantly to create a silhouette of a young couple relaxing together in "Wasted Youth".
To see more of Rashad Alakbarov"s work, please visit www.facebook.com/media/
And to find out more about Tim Noble and Sue Webster, please visit www.timnobleandsuewebster.com