Calligraphy on display | Pakistan Press Foundation (PPF)

Pakistan Press Foundation

Calligraphy on display

Pakistan Press Foundation

ISLAMABAD: Celebrating the holy month of Ramazan, Satrang Art Gallery has organised a calligraphy exhibition ‘Hurouf’ of eight exceptional artists.

The artists whom works have been displayed include Tajammul Hussain, Gohar Qalam, Rasheed Butt, Ahmed Khan, Arif Khan, Bin Qulander, Bushra Habib, and Mussarat Arif.

Australian High Commissioner, Peter Heyward, inaugurated the exhibition. US Ambassador Richard Olson also visited the exhibition, though there were no formal speeches but he saw every exhibit with keen interest. Among artists only two could attend the event as others were out of city or country.

Calligraphy or Khushkhati is a part of most cultures and languages. It is deeply embedded in Islamic traditions, perhaps because of the emphasis on writing, reading and knowledge seeking in Islam. In addition, Islamic Arabic calligraphy was originally used to write out the Holy Quran, religious prayers and the names of God.

The artists have a distinct signature or manner in their artworks. Ahmed khan, one of Pakistan’s most distinguished calligraphists presents complicated and perfectly rendered red, gold and green canvases. Visually, his paintings reflect the splendour of sun-lit clouds upon the earth, and are passionate in their praise of God, said Asma Rashid Khan, curator of the gallery.

“Tajammul Hussain is a London based Pakistani artist whose work can be found in the collections of the Ashmolean, Glasgow Museum, British Museum, National Museum of Lahore and Tunisian collection. One of his paintings entitled “The Immaculate Conception” (and Jesus in the Quran) hangs in number 10 Downing Street. There is often a striking simplicity about his work which he developed from his earlier interest in geometric designs, before moving on to a keen appreciation of various kinds of papers and textures.”

Professor Khurshid Allam Gohar Qalam’s script vacillates between large sweeping stroke jail-like portrayals over translucent back grounds. His canvases are overlaid and interspersed with bright patches of color, coaxing the viewer’s eye.

Rasheed Butt has joined the exhibition with his plain black canvases that are the perfect backdrops for the thick, gold painted Quranic verses. His work is minimal and text-like. Mussarat and Bin Qulander use traditional arabesque or spiral-like patterns in their pieces.

The Nation

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