Deconstruct or what!

21 May 2014

Email

Unveiling Eve by Sundus Talpur. Photos: White Star
Unveiling Eve by Sundus Talpur. Photos: White Star

KARACHI: The artworks put up by eight young artists at the Full Circle gallery are collectively titled ‘Deconstruct’. While it hints at elements of the philosophical theory espoused by Jacques Derrida, witnessing the exhibition makes the viewer think as if the intention lurking underneath the effort is to ‘reconstruct’ rather than ‘deconstruct’. And there’s nothing wrong with that. In fact, it’s praiseworthy.

It is evident by looking at the 40 odd exhibits that these artists (all of whom have been trained at the Indus Valley School of Art and Architecture) feel a social responsibility, though they might not like to confine themselves content-wise as creative individuals. But can you help it when the society you’re an integral part of never has a dull moment, most of the time in an unpalatable way? This can be noticed by looking at the very first piece, ‘Karachi, You Beauty’ by Marium Kamal (screen print, coffee stain on canvas). Obviously, the artist is perturbed by the events that have shaped Karachi in recent times and at the same time is aware of its peaceful past. The textual form she has opted for to express herself lends a verbal, somewhat bookish, touch to the artwork.

The Lost Page 5 by Syed Kashif Ali Mohsin. Photos: White Star
The Lost Page 5 by Syed Kashif Ali Mohsin. Photos: White Star

Rameez Rehman plays with the concept of mirrors in ‘Reflection of the World’ (glue, mirror and wood). What is it that he wants to see in the mirror? Is it the self? Or is it the division of the self in the form of other factors that exist in society? It’s for the viewer to shatter that code.

Mahmil Masood creates a piece titled ‘All that Glitters’ that on surface is a patchwork combining different aspects but is also an identifiable, if not solvable, labyrinth. It’s a kind of a cartographic journey on a level that is essentially personal.

Karachi, You Beauty by Marium Kamal. Photos: White Star
Karachi, You Beauty by Marium Kamal. Photos: White Star

Syed Kashif Ali Mohsin gives away his intention by giving his exhibit the title ‘The Lost Page 5’ (watercolour, charcoal, pastel on paper). It is a longing for a non-violent approach to life without ignoring the things that have passed us by, both good and bad.

Azmeena Alladin, Sundus Talpur, Sikandar Butt and Qurutulain Qamar Chaudhry also impress with their artworks.

The exhibition will remain open till May 27.

Published in Dawn, May 21st, 2014