Redefined art: A voyage down the ages

40 ceramic pieces show historical sites in a new light.

Sehrish Ali January 26, 2012


An artist has gone beyond the call of ordinary and modelled historical sites around the country. A graduate of College of Arts and Design Punjab, Jamil Hussain, introduced an amalgam of traditional and contemporary ceramic sculptures titled “The Silent Whispers” at Nomad gallery here on Wednesday.

His love for sculptures goes back to his childhood days when he found fascination with old heritage sites and playing with wet clay. His second solo exhibition at the gallery features installations for those looking to adorn their walls with tangible art.

The 40 pieces at the gallery are in a way a tribute to heritage and ethnical sites that we now see broken and unkempt around Pakistan. However none of them are exact replicas of any site. “I don’t copy any building as I find it an insult to the original; I only take particular images and work with them to create something new,” he said.

The sculptures range from small finely sculpted jharokas set in frame to the large fort walls polished to perfection with small elephants set outside to keep guard (also set in frame). The most interesting, however, are the small little balconies complete with mosaic windows with hues of blue set in the windows.

In a fusion of sorts, he has also incorporated some modern architectural touches to his art. Think tall towers set with traditional windows but built all crooked almost identical to the Leaning Tower of Pisa. The artist stresses for dire need for preservation of old structures from the avarice of land grabbers and the negligence of heritage managers.

“Even the monuments that are on the World Heritage list have been subjected to criminal neglect and vandalism,” lamented Hussain.

The exhibition will continue till February 11.

Published in The Express Tribune, January 26th, 2012.

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