Ashura: The show goes on at art galleries

Owners of private galleries say that business continues as normal.


Express November 30, 2011

LAHORE:


“There are few visitors up till the 10th of Muharram but we deal in contemporary art so connoisseurs still show up,” says a representative of The Drawing Room, “we don’t hold any specific Muharram themed exhibits either. However, after the first 10 days, business returns to normal.”


Ramazan usually sees an influx of calligraphic shows to keep in line with the religious mood of the month. “A lot of people do not buy anything during the month of Muharram. The sales are definitely affected but people still trickle in,” says Mehnaz, owner and curator of Collectors Galleria, “the gallery does not follow any specific theme, nor do artists bring out collections specifically for the month. However, we do feature some calligraphers who favour Shia themes and work on collections along those lines year round.”

Ali, manager of Revivers Galleria concurs Muharram doesn’t affect the kind of work displayed. “We have all sorts of work on display and people still do buy them,” he continues, “there are those who do not make purchases during the month but also customers who are not affected.” “We have a Bin Qullander show on display at the moment and it will stay on till the end of the duration,” says Zahra of Ejaz Art Gallery, “our clientele is different. It is countrywide so the season does not really affect us. We are not open on the 9th and the 10th out of respect but other than that nothing affects either our sales or the viewers.”

Published in The Express Tribune, December 1st, 2011.

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