Contemporary calligraphy: Blending old and new

10 artists from Lahore and Karachi exhibited their artwork.

Hassan Naqvi July 25, 2013
10 artists from Lahore and Karachi exhibited their artwork. LAYOUT: MAHA HAIDER


As many as 10 artists from Lahore and Karachi exhibited their calligraphy paintings at Ejaz Art gallery on Tuesday.

The exhibition, titled Quat, was inaugurated by painter Saeed Akhtar. The works exhibited included blends of new techniques and traditional calligraphy. More than 30 calligraphy paintings were on display by Shahid Rana, Ajab Khan, Ahmad Khan, Jamshed Qaiser, Zulfiqar Ali, Arif Khan, Shakil Ismail, Asghar Ali, Muhammad Ali Bukhari and Ibrahim Ramey.

The calligraphers used various styles of writing in their artwork including nastaliq, Lahori nastaliq, nasakh and suls. They merged traditional styles with innovative techniques to transform their artwork from traditional to contemporary calligraphy pieces.

Saeed Akhtar advised young calligraphers to work extensively. He also encouraged young artists to exhibit their artwork.

Bukhari said, “I have used oil on canvas using khat-i -nastaliq for writing the names of Allah in one of my art pieces.”

Ali said, “I have merged contemporary and traditional styles in calligraphy using khat-i -nasakh and suls to write Quranic verses and the sayings of Sufi mystics.”

Critic Quddus Mirza said, “Calligraphy is full of meaning. There are many ways to depict what the artist wants to express. This is what artists such as Shakir Ali, Hanif Ramay, Anwar Ali, Jalal Shemza and Sadequain have shown. “

Muhammad Ramazan, the curator of the gallery told The Express Tribune, “We exhibit calligraphy paintings every year in Ramazan which depict Quranic verses, hadith and darood using different writing styles.”

The exhibition will end on July 31.

Published in The Express Tribune, July 25th, 2013.


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