Art of another kind
Karachi: Art today is assuming many dimensions, which just confuse the simple, conventional art fans. Art has ceased to be the pursuit it once was, catering to one’s aesthetic sense and being a balm for the vision. It was simple realism. Today there are umpteen forms of art, sometimes one more weird than the other, forms that keep you guessing and just strain one’s imagination. The more weird the imagination, the more “artistic”.
Just one such exhibition opened at the Chawkandi Art Gallery on Wednesday.
A three-man show comprising works by Ahmed Ali Manganhar, Arif Hussain Khokhar, and Munawar Ali Syed, it is a collection of 15 paintings on collage paper, oil-on-canvas, graphite-on-canvas, and pen-and-ink on archive paper.
They are not landscapes or sceneries. They are just blotches of colour or spherical objects, leaving the viewer to imagine as to what it all could be.
As for the spherical objects, there are five works, titled “Loaded” 1-5, by Munawar Ali Syed.
Syed, currently an instructor at the Indus Valley School of Art and
Architecture, has painted a whole lot of spherical objects in pen-and-ink that look exactly like sea urchins.
He says, “The connotation of Loaded is our state of mind whereby we might not like to think of something and would like to just get it out of our system, yet, involuntarily, we think so much about it. It is riding atop our minds that it finds an outlet in some form or the other.”
The drawing, pen-and-ink on archive paper, shows a round object with spine-like structures protruding, giving the effect of a sea urchin.
These structures, Syed says, are representative of the way we are preoccupied with an idea that we actually want to wash out of our system.
Another work of his shows the same kind of a structure with two birds enmeshed inside the network. This, Syed says, is connotative of the way we could attain peace within while preoccupied with something we’d like to wash out of our minds. It is all a spate of conundrums the viewer is left to grapple with.
The exhibition is a must-see for those with an eye for the unusual and an overly fertile imagination.