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Saturday February 04, 2023

In times of strife, celebrating hope

KarachiHope has always been a source of solace and expectation for mankind. It, perhaps, is the emotion that keeps us all going; a force that often helps us overcome adversity and tide over situations which normally would look impossible to negotiate.So, here we have somebody from across the border

By our correspondents
October 29, 2015
Karachi
Hope has always been a source of solace and expectation for mankind. It, perhaps, is the emotion that keeps us all going; a force that often helps us overcome adversity and tide over situations which normally would look impossible to negotiate.
So, here we have somebody from across the border - Manisha Gera Baswani from New Delhi - who is here to celebrate hope in her own characteristic way. An exhibition of 14 of her works commenced at the Sanat Initiative Art Gallery, Clifton on Wednesday and offered some pieces that were a refreshing sight for the eye, while there were those that called for an overly fertile imagination to determine the themes.
Among the works that stood out was a sketch in tea water, pencil, watercolour and Gouache on paper, 104 inches-by-79 inches, titled, “Let a thousand flowers bloom”.
It shows layers of flower petals with human faces inside them; smiling faces, suggestive of hope. According to Baswani, many of the faces were those of her family members and friends. "This is my way of projecting the highly optimistic emotion that is hope," she said. What adds to the winsome nature of the work is the brilliant colour schemes of the flowers.
Then there’s another one, a random depiction of feathers. Perhaps this is the origin of the exhibition’s title, “Hope is the thing with feathers”. The random feathers are an indication of the birds which are connotative of a merry flock with their heartwarming chirping and flitting about, reflecting a happy, carefree attitude towards life.
However, there are brain teasers too. One of these is titled, “Once upon a time there was a river”. It is a series of coloured blocks put together which leaves it entirely to the imagination of the viewer to determine the presence of the river in the foggy past. There is visibly nothing to represent a river, rendering it an exercise in abstract art, the kind that involves the imagination more than optical vision.

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