Art exhibition: Concealed in patterns, emotions on display

Six women artists showcase distinct, meaningful work.

Maha Mussadaq November 29, 2013
Intricate details in each piece reflect artists’ inner conflicts, personal experiences and struggles for self-development. PHOTO: EXPRESS


Sublime shades of watercolours with an amalgamation of unique patterns to depict emotions and self-development were the central theme of an exhibition held at Satrang Art Gallery on Thursday evening. 

A combined show comprising works by Beenish Khalid, Nadia Rahat, Nida Bangash, Mamoona Riaz, Mehrbano Khattak and Saima Beenish attracted a number of art lovers at the opening show. Intricate details in each piece not only delve into the depth of the theme, but reflect the artists’ inner conflicts, personal experiences and struggles of self-development.

Using gouache on wasli, Beenish’s untitled piece tactfully uses pieces of furniture to convey self-accomplishment. A traditional stool acts as a base holding the weight of several intertwined pieces of furniture, at the top of which is a throne.  Beenish said, “In my work, chairs are sequential stages of personal growth and progress. Each stage is vital and takes time and cannot be omitted to get to the top.”

Looking at Khalid’s work of gouache and paper collage on wasli, one sees her family home from which birds descend from the rooftop, representing members of her family. As the house gradually shrinks in each piece, the number of birds keeps increasing. “This series is of the time I shared with my family and how the importance of a house vanishes when it’s time to leave”.

Working with a minimalistic approach through the use of colour pencils, pastels and gouache on treated surface, Khattak’s work represents the journey from birth till marriage. “The planning of the impending end of a way of life starts from the first cry from the womb.

Transfixed by furious brushwork and splashes of bright hues on canvas, Rahat brings out behaviour of the conscious and subconscious mind. With a mannequin in a dress that appears to be a cage, she entraps several emotions behind bars that are a true reflection of one’s self. By combining relief, etching and a three-dimensional work with miniature painting, Rahat’s work is rather endearing.

Bangash, a visual artist born in Iran and brought up in Pakistan, displays three pieces that are eye-catching. With the use of bright hues on a white backdrop, her unique style uses the language of patterns as a means of weaving together the complexities of her cross-culture experiences. Her work is titled, “War, Rugs with Love.”

Riaz uses gauche on watercolour for paper and laser engraving on wasli. An amalgamation of miniature, sculpture and cartography, Riaz’s work is soft and chic. In this setting, she inserts boxes with windows through which a viewer can peep into a factory of life. She terms her work a “labyrinth of thoughts and reality.”

The exhibition was inaugurated by the UK High Commissioner’s wife, Fariba Thompson and will continue for a month.

Published in The Express Tribune, November 30th, 2013.


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