Lahore:Pakistani artists recently turned their designs into canvas-wrapped, box coolers. The event took place a Riots Studio in Lahore, where 12 participating artists were asked to convert blank Redbull coolers into works of art.
The event was curated by Zain Naqvi, a graduate from National College of Arts (NCA) who had guided the artists in getting the best of the available medium. Participants had been given two weeks to work on their respective projects, which were showcased on cubed coolers.
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The exhibition featured a fusion of old and new traditions, intermingled with innovative designs. Painters, sculptors and others hailing from different fields of art took part, displaying the untapped talent in Pakistan.
Osama Khan, a sculptor from NCA used airbrushing to create his piece, which depicted a world caught between fantasies and often, an unsettling reality. “I was ecstatic when the brand approached me to be part of this project. It is a great initiative to encourage artists to bring out their creativity,” Khan told The Express Tribune. “We got to use our imagination and create. I wanted to tell a story that there is a war going on inside every soul, which seeks happiness and to lift the burdens of life.”
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Karachi-based artist Samya Arif, who trained at the Indus Valley School of Arts and Architecture (IVS) designed a cooler with digital illustrations. Being a staunch feminist, Arif projected images of dark-skinned women on her canvas. “Dark skin is still such a taboo in our society! I wanted to raise my voice against that through my art. There is beauty in diversity and that includes all skin tones.
BNU graduate Shumyle Haider opted for calligraphy. He used Habib Jalib’s acclaimed poem Zulmat Ko Zia, as his inspiration. “This poem has inspired me tremendously as it speaks against injustice in society and I wanted to convey that. ‘Oh artist of my nation, do not sacrifice your art for injustice” is the message I have painted on my canvas,” explained Haider. “Instead of focusing on the injustice and feeling depressed, I reacted by using creativity to spread beauty,” he added.
Raza Bukhari, another artist from NCA, used methods of Vasli, gold leaf and gouache – a Persian technique for miniatures. “I am deeply influenced by the Persian artist, Mahmoud Farshchian,” he said. “I portrayed the dilemma that we artists often face. We get so influenced by the West that we forget our own culture. So, I have hand-painted my canvas using mixed media and Tazhib, a decorative art of illumination.”
The project did not just focus of trained artists but also gave a chance to self- taught ones such as Hasan Shah Gillani, who used pen work and paint to create abstract miniatures.
Courtesy : Express Tribune