Exhibition highlights environmental stewardship

By Our Correspondent
June 13, 2024
ThePakistan National Council of the Arts (PNCA) Islamabad. — APP File

Islamabad : In a remarkable display of artistry and activism, the Government of Gilgit-Baltistan, in collaboration with the Pakistan National Council of the Arts (PNCA), has unveiled the photography exhibition ‘Listen to Her - Whispers of the Valley, Gilgit-Baltistan.’


The exhibition, curated by Aasim Akhter and featuring the work of renowned visual artist and activist Zaheer Chaudhry, aims to highlight the fragile beauty of Gilgit-Baltistan's valleys through the lens of environmental stewardship.

The inauguration ceremony was graced by esteemed guests including renowned mountaineers Shehroze Kashif and Sirbaz Khan, as well as historian and travel writer Sir Salman Rashid. These distinguished figures shared their insights on the significance of the exhibition and the urgent need for environmental conservation. The event was made possible with the contributions of Aziz Ahmed Jamali, Secretary Finance Gilgit-Baltistan, and M. Ayoub Jamali, Director General of PNCA.

Shehroze Kashif, a renowned mountaineer, expressed his admiration for the exhibition, stating, "It was an honour to inaugurate this powerful exhibition. Zaheer Chaudhry's photographs vividly capture the breathtaking beauty and the urgent plight of Gilgit-Baltistan's natural landscape. This exhibition is a poignant reminder of our duty to protect these treasures for future generations."

Born and raised in the ancient town of Ajudhan (Pakpattan), Zaheer Chaudhry has a profound connection to his land. With an academic background from Govt College University and the National College of Arts in Lahore, he has dedicated his career to capturing over 100,000 travel visual stories and engaging in contemporary art practices. His efforts include designing space and communication and developing discourse at the intersection of environment and art. Known for planting trees as living sculptures, Zaheer has claimed the title of the most viewed photographer in Pakistan, with over 500 exhibitions reaching more than 150,000 viewers.

At the opening ceremony, Zaheer Chaudhry shared his journey, stating, "My journey through the valleys of Gilgit-Baltistan has been one of profound learning and reflection. Each photograph in this exhibition tells a story of nature's beauty and its fragility. I hope these images inspire others to take action towards preserving our environment. Our land is not just a physical space; it is our heritage and our future."