Art exhibition: Memories rule high in Aqsa Shakil’s work

Published: July 18, 2016
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Artist Aqsa Shakil focuses on memories and weather in her works that are on display at Koel gallery. PHOTOS: COURTESY KOEL GALLERY

Artist Aqsa Shakil focuses on memories and weather in her works that are on display at Koel gallery. PHOTOS: COURTESY KOEL GALLERY

KARACHI: Memories retain a prolific life of their own in one’s life; however they become an immortalised version once uttered from the stroke of an artist.

Aqsa Shakil, a graduate of the National College of Arts in Lahore with a major in miniature painting, exhibited her work, titled ‘Delineate’, for the first time in Karachi at Koel Gallery, showcasing some interesting pieces of art. Shakil did her first solo show in 2007 in New York at the Oliver Kamm Gallery.

“My art pieces are a reflection of traditional, sub-continental miniature painting and contemporary abstract,” Shakil told The Express Tribune. She paints on paper with the combination of the two.

“One has a pocket-full of memories in life, that are not usually very clear if we go back in time – they become faded memories,” she elaborated, adding that besides memories, weather also played a pivotal role in her drawings. Most of her exhibited paintings are associated with weather conditions of the city that she had been residing in at the time of making them. “I embark on a given project when it’s raining, snowing or hailing outside,” shared Shakil, who is currently living in San Francisco, USA. “I often like to capture memories of very mundane moments in my drawings,” she added.

Shakil has also been drawing miniatures inspired from her travels and the people around her for some time which she terms  ‘Trekoids’. Her travel diary spans from Karachi to Lahore and onwards to San Francisco.

Calling her artwork as “pieces of memories”, Shakil believes that, through these pieces, she is able to see how her brain presently functions.

“It was lovely to see Shakil’s work. Her artistic sense echoes with the gallery’s [Koel Gallery] assertion of minimalism of space,” said Koel Art Gallery owner Noorjehan Bilgrami. The gallery had space at the time that Shakil planned to show, so the plan worked out well for us [Koel Gallery] and her [Shakil], Bilgrami added.

Shakil’s collection will run till July 23 at Koel Gallery in Clifton.

Published in The Express Tribune, July 18th, 2016.

 

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