W11 Studio: Travel the roads of Karachi through Sara Rizvi's eyes

Artist launches first series called 'Roshan hai aaj bhi mera sheher' to show off the good side of city.

Ema Anis October 26, 2011

KARACHI: Greeted by a glittering public bus numbered W11 – Karachi’s famous and most favoured bus – upon entering Frere Hall, with young and old alike boarding it on and off in sheer excitement, you are not sure of what new level of art you are going to see inside.

An art exhibition launching W11 Studio by Sara Rizvi, which started from October 15 and ran on till October 25 at the Sadequain art gallery, depicted the colours of the lively city Karachi in a unique way of its own.

Rizvi, an ‘artist by passion and designer by profession’, launched the first series called “Roshan hai aaj bhi mera sheher” of her paintings, all done in the shades of orange, yellow and crimson.

Featuring 14 of her paintings in the series, done on fabric instead of the usual canvas, Rizvi captured the colours of Karachi’s soothing evenings.

“Fabric was a difficult canvas to work on as most pens blot on it. It was about choosing the right fabric and the right pen to work. This was something I was never taught by anyone and no one else was doing it either, so I tried to experiment which turned out pretty good,” elaborated Rizvi.

“I want to highlight the passion and the high-spirit that I’ve seen in Karachi,” commented Rizvi. “People tell me there are highs and lows – I know it. But there’s a beautiful side to my city as well.”

The artist promoted her event via Facebook through which Dr Nabeed Jawaid, an art lover, was tempted to visit the exhibition. With an air of excitement, he told The Express Tribune how he looked forward to more work by Rizvi.

Jimmy Engineer, an eminent artist and social worker, said that he had met the artist earlier where she showed him some of her work and invited him to this exhibition. “The reason why I am here is because her [Rizvi’s] work is very good and different, and we must promote and support our talent.”

“In the early 70s, there was only one art gallery in Karachi, and now there are so many. This shows the support artists are receiving here. We, the senior artists, should definitely support the young ones and help them come forward,” Engineer added.

Rizvi’s proud mother expressed her excitement over the turnout of people and said that this was better than she had expected. “I asked Sarah to collaborate work with somebody, but she was adamant about going solo. I did not take her work much seriously earlier, but now I am really happy to see people visiting and appreciating her work.”

Each of Rizvi’s painting was titled uniquely. There was “Chal Pagli,” “Charhna Mana Hai,” “Ghareeb ki Majboori” and “Piyar ka signal” among others. Her paintings started selling off within hours of the launch on the first day.

Why her series is called W11 is because “W11 never stops,” just like the life in Karachi.


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