‘Spiritual connection’ in paintings
ISLAMABAD: Shahid Toosy, a former director of Pakistan National Council of the Arts (PNCA), will hold an exhibition at Gallery6 to illustrate his spiritual connection with the nature on Saturday. The paintings put on the display titled Spiritual Connection, comprising 27 artworks in water colours and five in oil on canvas, mostly focus on the scenes of Murree.
Shahid Toosy won an award at an event “Celebrating cities” held by the Ministry of Culture for his work on Murree Hills in 2009.
Speaking on the preview held on Friday, the artist said painting outdoors in a place such as Murree was a big challenge since the weather dramatically changed within minutes. “It may be foggy to start with but suddenly the sky clears and the sun starts shining,” he added.
He said it became a challenge for an artist to retain the memory of the intended scene, and he had to either make a quick pastel sketch or take pictures before starting to paint.
The curator of the exhibition, Dr Arjumand Faisal, said: “Many of his works have a soft haze that creates an idyllic environment which soothes the eyes and the soul.” Shahid Toosy prefers to work slow, sometimes spending days on the same painting. His paintings reflect the uniqueness of water-colours which lead to transparent, luminous and fluid colours.
Shahid Toosy chooses his subjects with care, often changing the position of his elements to make the picture more interesting in composition and colour. Apart from landscapes, he creates portraits, figurative paintings and abstract artworks in oil on canvas and other mediums.
He is a skilled sculptor, and his painted Buddha’s relics are currently on a display in a monastery in Seoul, Korea. The artist was born in Lahore and graduated from the Department of Fine Arts, Punjab University, in 1970. Since then, he has been painting and displayed his work in places such as the President House and Command and Staff College (Quetta).
The artist also established the National Puppet Theatre at PNCA in 1975, composed music for PTV in the musical programme “Nayyera Sings Faiz”, directed music for documentary films, designed the emblem for OIC and won awards and accolades for several outstanding contributions.
In spite of painting for more than 40 years, the artist never got time to paint for a solo exhibition, and the current display is his first. The exhibition will continue till October 21.