Solo exhibition: Paintings evoke vulnerability, raw emotion

Abdullah Qureshi’s latest work on display at Zahoorul Akhlaq Gallery.

Mariam Shafqat March 25, 2017

LAHORE: A solo exhibition featuring more than 60 artworks by artist Abdullah Qureshi went on display at the Zahoorul Akhlaq Gallery on Friday. The exhibit titled ‘A Story of Myself and Some Friends in These Fragments of Daily Loves’ will remain open April 6.

According to the curator, Imran Ahmed, the artist has focused on portraits of men, through which he explores ideas of masculinity, intimacy and desire. “The images, evoking vulnerability and raw emotion, can be seen as radical shift within his body of works, signalling his growing awareness of the self, which manifests in stark political ways,” he said.

Ahmed said Qureshi’s use of personal history, childhood memories and traumatic pasts in a non-linear format had emerged as key concerns for the artist and more recently his work has taken the form of a painted visual diary.

Speaking about the techniques and inspiration behind his latest series of work, Qureshi said he has generally been interested in the fluidity of paints and so from an early age he began looking for different mediums such as ink, water colours and enamel paint

“The way any sort of paint drips and flows on canvas fascinates me and that is how I have evolved my technique,” he said.

Having worked on pure abstract art for the past six years, the artist found himself ultimately interested in painting figures.

Qureshi said he was inspired to paint rough figures and the boundaries which define people, while the subjects of inspiration came from his friends and acquaintances. He has used abstraction and representation to touch upon personal histories and portraits of his subjects.

“Essentially it was not about capturing their features but very much about capturing their boundaries or form,” Qureshi explained.

Published in The Express Tribune, March 25th, 2017.


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