Shahida Saigol’s house is a shrine to beautiful art pieces and Gandhara sculptures at par with the best collections around
Shahida Saigol’s house is a haven for Gandhara art collectors and lovers. The wide-open spaces, with high windows and nostalgic art pieces, make the house welcoming and full of character. Saigol gives us a tour of her formal seating area for good reason. From the beautiful sculptures to limited edition prints of the old city and a series of miniatures, Saigol’s art collection is worth taking a look at.
“I have always been fond of a nice environment, as I truly believe that a nice environment makes for a happy person,” says Saigol. Having renovated the old family home, Saigol discovered her love for horizontal and vertical elevation. While the entire space is open, it not only has different levels horizontally but there is a tiny library suspended vertically to one side. “I like to use every part of my house, an informal space that can be enjoyed by everyone.”
It might be the prettiest room in the house but why Shahida Saigol loves this particular space has more behind it than just its beauty. She continues to explain how her husband is an avid collector and how they have travelled the world looking for the pieces they own today.
“My husband would go to excavation sites and pick up old sculptures from there, while the limited edition lithographs of Lahore city were picked up from auctions over a course of many years,” she shares, “it was so much fun locating them and we are so lucky to have found these ones of Lahore, as it is our birthplace.” The room boasts about eight of these beautiful prints. What is beautiful is how the prints of Lahore are juxtaposed opposite a colossal 18th century Pechawi Kishan Gar.
While the furniture in the space is tastefully done, it is very easy to get lost in the art and sculpture adorning the space. Over a cup of tea, the cheerful and very hospitable Shahida Saigol laughs about how, over the years, she has wanted to gift the Gandhara pieces to her friends and how her husband would not hear of it. “He is so attached to them that parting with them is not an option,” she laughs, “once we moved to London for a few years and I had to lug all these pieces with me and back.”