Connecting the dots
KARACHI: Artists are a strange group of people. More often than not, their work begins on a personal note and by the time it finishes it assumes the kind of significance that relates to society at large. A group exhibition titled ‘Connections’ that began at the Canvas Art Gallery on Tuesday hints at this very fact. The show has brought together three talented female artists who narrate different tales through their paintings that somehow connect on the level of feelings.
Samina Jose Islam examines an individual’s willing isolation from society or situations that can have a telling effect. The line between seeking solace and having solace gets blurred when you insulate yourself thinking all is well or not well. Viewing the first exhibit ‘Cocooned’ (oil on canvas) doesn’t hit the viewer as a layered work of art. It’s upon reaching ‘State of Low Consciousness’ that the viewer realises that the aim of the artist is not to create a cushy, meditative environment but to scrutinise the reality behind it. The finesse in her work is worth mentioning.
Madiha Hyder doesn’t like to beat about the bush, or so it seems. Her ‘Pictures on My Wall’ (oil on digital print) immediately makes the viewer
understand that the story she’s trying to tell is a readily identifiable one. The omnipresence of newspaper sheets carrying horrendous news items about Karachi, Balochistan etc, surrounding a girl who has a palm device in her hands is a self-explanatory, hard-hitting exhibit. It’s the artist’s way of remonstrating against what her country and countrymen have become.
Sabina Haque doesn’t veer off the track too much in terms of content. The technique she employs sets her apart. The use of video game images coupled with known styles of painting (western and oriental) makes the viewer take note of her worries — ‘Land Grabbers’, ‘Refuge’, ‘Drone Shadows Coming Home’ (oil and archival pigments on canvas). Impressive work, indeed!