Grandeur Gallery’s Group Show presenting works by artists Omar Farid, Shakeel Siddiqi, Mashkoor Raza, Wahab Jaffer, Akram SPaul, Henri Souffay and sculptor Sadiq Hussain opened on Tuesday in the city.
The Group Show exhibited an interesting mix of pieces by an interesting mix of artists. Farid, an art school dropout and a student of the late Ali Imam, is known for his work which focuses on surrealism. “Surrealism is a figment of my imagination. I believe a painting has to have prerogative and must make you think.”
Four of Farid’s paintings on display showed his love for bright colours and vibrant hues. One such painting, titled “Picnic”, is what Farid calls a “happy painting”. “Live”, says Farid, “Don’t live and let live, live and let die.”
Farid laments that in today’s world, art has become an intangible philosophy and less of a tangible proof of creativity. “Art should be made for art’s sake and not for commercial means. You do it for passion; you don’t use it to make a living.”
For famous artist Mashkoor Raza, horses were the main subject of his work. “I was inspired to paint horses because of my many visits to a race course near Malir.” He adds that the subject line he chose was part of the themes of beauty and power, with his subjects radiating both. “It is very difficult to draw horses on oil on canvas and initially, it was a very hard task. However, I developed my distinctive style and with time people loved it and I got stuck on this.”
Pieces which caught the most attention were Shakeel Siddiqi’s portrayal of women. Using oil on canvas as his medium, the artist showed women in different lights. Other eye-catching pieces were those by Akram Spaul. One particular piece which captured one’s imagination was an untitled piece which showed a chair with flowers on its seat and a cap hanging off it. The chair threw a wide, somewhat distorted shadow — one would have loved to discuss this with the artist but unfortunately Spaul wasn’t available at the time.
Sadiq Hussain’s wood sculptures were very interesting. When asked about his choice of medium, Hussain stated, “The colour of sheesham depicts life and brings with it a depth to these pieces.”
Hussain’s work revolved around struggle and the ups and downs which are present in every beings life. “This is a dramatic cycle that continues forever.” For Hussain, wood sculptures are a passion which started to interest him in 1983. He names renowned sculptor Henry Moore as his inspiration.
Wahab Jaffer’s pen and ink collection depicted women and their various moods, while Henri Souffay’s ink on paper showed women’s hands and horses. This artist is known for his display of latent mysticism, evident from his focus on hands but unfortunately both artists were not in the city so further details could not be discussed.
The art exhibition continues at Grandeur Gallery, Zamzama till June 30.
Published In The Express Tribune, June 14th, 2012.
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