Pop-up Pyaar Shop: ‘Love is where the messy ideas are’

Published: January 14, 2013
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The works themed on ‘pyaar’ displayed at T2F included artist Haider Ali’s banner which read Faslah na rakhain, pyaar hone dain’ (Don’t keep distance, let love happen) [top], portraits of Frida Kahlo [above right] and film star Anjuman [above left] and postcards of ‘saasta pyar’ (cheap love). PHOTO: AYESHA MIR/ EXPRESS

The works themed on ‘pyaar’ displayed at T2F included artist Haider Ali’s banner which read Faslah na rakhain, pyaar hone dain’ (Don’t keep distance, let love happen) [top], portraits of Frida Kahlo [above right] and film star Anjuman [above left] and postcards of ‘saasta pyar’ (cheap love). PHOTO: AYESHA MIR/ EXPRESS

KARACHI: Who needs sparkle from Tiffany’s when ‘saasta’ love says so much more – quirky slogans, cheesy banners and the couple which ruled Lollywood during the 1970s, Shabnam and Nadeem, are plastered all over The Second Floor (T2F) as part of their Pop-up Pyaar Shop.  

To set the mood, music of different genres, languages and era were playing in the background as disco balls hung from the ceiling. A multimedia display was set up on a wall, which displayed tweets with hashtag #Pyaar while a slideshow of pictures that were collected on the theme of ‘pyar’ ran on another wall.

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The works themed on ‘pyaar’ displayed at T2F included artist Haider Ali’s banner which read Faslah na rakhain, pyaar hone dain’ (Don’t keep distance, let love happen) [top], portraits of Frida Kahlo [above right] and film star Anjuman [above left] and postcards of ‘saasta pyar’ (cheap love). PHOTO: AYESHA MIR/ EXPRESS

“We had been thinking about doing a pop-up art show for a while – something that was quick and organic,” said Rabeea Arif, the communication designer at T2F while speaking to The Express Tribune about where the idea for the shop came from. Arif contributed the posters of famous Lollywood icons, including one of the evergreen late Sultan Rahi saying ‘pyaar Hone de’. She was also the brains and talent behind the postcards with famous lines from movies.

On sale were paintings, posters, products of truck art, stickers, postcards and more.

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The works themed on ‘pyaar’ displayed at T2F included artist Haider Ali’s banner which read Faslah na rakhain, pyaar hone dain’ (Don’t keep distance, let love happen) [top], portraits of Frida Kahlo [above right] and film star Anjuman [above left] and postcards of ‘saasta pyar’ (cheap love). PHOTO: AYESHA MIR/ EXPRESS

Famed artist Haider Ali, known for his truck art, made the one of the most talked about pieces – a banner which was displayed loudly and proudly in the room. In a clever wordplay, Ali changed the line written on trucks ‘Faslah rakhain warna pyaar hojaye ga’ (Keep distance otherwise you will fall in love) to ‘Faslah na rakhain, pyaar hone dain’ (Don’t keep distance, let love happen). Humans of Karachi, which is headed by Khaula Jamil, sold postcards with photos of the city while a blog, From Karachi with Love, sold a booklet full of postcards with drawings and quotes.

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The works themed on ‘pyaar’ displayed at T2F included artist Haider Ali’s banner which read Faslah na rakhain, pyaar hone dain’ (Don’t keep distance, let love happen) [top], portraits of Frida Kahlo [above right] and film star Anjuman [above left] and postcards of ‘saasta pyar’ (cheap love). PHOTO: AYESHA MIR/ EXPRESS

Young artist Sara Nisar chose to provide fun facts with her postcards featuring images of Lollywood films. A postcard with only a black moustache on a red background on the front, carried details on the back about the film Wehshi Gujjar – based on the real life ghunda, Jagga Gujjar of Chowburgi. The show which opened on Sunday was an instant hit with the visitors and the positive reviews led the organisers to extend its display till Thursday.

Published in The Express Tribune, January 14th, 2013.

Correction: In an earlier version of this article, artist Sara Nisar was mentioned as Sara Nasir. The error has been fixed.

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