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March 9, 2019

Gallery6 celebrates 11th anniversary with gems


March 9, 2019

Islamabad : When we opened in 2008 in G-9, predictions were made that Gallery6 will not survive even six months, but we not only continued but expanded to become the capital’s largest private sector gallery. We are now celebrating our 11th Anniversary with the 90th exhibition being curated by me. Over the period, we not only introduced many new artists, but also experimented with thematic exhibitions and art for social change activities and introduced national art awards for upcoming artists.

The Curator of Gallery6 Dr. Arjumand Faisel expressed these sentiments with beaming eyes while talking about an exhibition that inaugurated at the gallery Friday by Faisal Aftab, Managing Partner of Laksons Investments. The show has artworks of 38 leading artists, including the works of late masters like Sadequain, Ghulam Rasool, and Mansur Aye.

One is surprised to see a painting by Maqsood Ali, the well-known artist of the 1970s who was popular in Karachi for his abstract paintings with designs inspired by a geometric grid derived from ‘Rilli’ of Sindh. The painting depicts those abstract designs in broken forms with an interplay of pink, brown and white.

One rarely sees the work of Abdur Rahim Nagori, who was a free thinker, an out-spoken activist, and the first and most radical socio-political painter in Pakistan armed with the philosophies of writers and thinkers as diverse as Al-Ghazali, Diogenes, Goethe. It was a treat to see a Nagori painting on display.

Tassaduq Sohail and Riaz Rafi’s painting is from their landmark joint-solo exhibition ‘Inimitable Consilience’ held in 2015. The painting attracted several buyers at that time but Tassaduq refused to sell it as he said he was emotionally attached to it. After his death last year, the painting is now available for sale.

Sadequain’s illustrations of his own poetry, and of the work of Ghalib, Iqbal and Faiz are well known, but not many people are aware that he also illustrated poet Parto Rohilla’s book ‘Rainn Ujyara’ in mid-1970s. The exhibition has a few drawings made for the book; these exhibit the masterly flow of fine lines creating exotic drawings.

Mansur Aye’s painting has a sense of softness to it, perhaps reminiscent of the man himself. From all accounts, Mansur Aye was a quietly-spoken, and gentle soul. Ghulam Rasool’s painting is in his iconic style on ‘Bosarh’ in lush green fields while Moazzam Ali’s watercolor painting from his early period depicts families that live on boats in Sindh. Landscapes by Shahla Rafi, Mughees Riaz and Matloob Baig are also included.

Calligraphic work by Wasil Shahid with gold on black shows anatomical perfection and is aesthetically appealing in its compositions, while Bin Qalandar’s works are in his iconic decorative style in blue and red with silver. The show also features prints by Naiza Khan and Meher Afroze and two interesting sculptures by Imran Hunzai, one depicting the stealing of hen’s egg by mice and the other a satire about stealing of ‘chappals’ from mosques.

Omar Farid’s two paintings are on a sexual subject in his ever-intriguing style, while Abid Hasan’s collage works are shimmering. He applies chemical process on thin silver and gold leaf with different colours, creating tantalizing hues. These mixed media paintings have brilliance and unique tactile quality. Akram Spaul is as skillful as ever in making photorealistic artwork. Abrar, Nisar, Rind, Farrukh Shahab, Rahi, Hajra and Iqbal Hussain have participated with paintings in their iconic style. R M Naeem’s ‘mystic ritual,’ Sadaf Naeem’s self-portrait, and Irfan Gul Dahri’s submissions are also captivating. Ali Kazim and Aqeel Solangi’s work are from their earlier period while A Q Arif’s watercolor work is from his new series of surrealistic heritage. Naheed Reza’s painting is from her series made from bee wax and Arjumand Faisel has two vibrant pallete knife works on tiles.

Two paintings by Mobina Zuberi reflect continuation of her exhibition ‘The Moment’ but with a drastically changed palette and greater depth in their execution. There is exuding softness, sensuality and romance that draws and holds the viewer’s attention. The exhibition will continue daily till March 15, including the weekend at Gallery6 in F-6.

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