ISLAMABAD: An online display of the latest exquisite artworks by four senior artists was held on Tuesday.

The exhibition titled ‘Fleeting Moments’ showcased works by Nahid Raza, Prof Dr Rahat Naveed Masud, Akram Dost Baloch and Sadaf Naeem.

The show highlights conflict, human miseries, fear, socio-political oppression and feminity.

“All great art is by its very essence in conflict with the society with which it exists. It expresses the truth about the existence regardless of whether this truth serves or hinders the survival purpose of a given society,” said Nageen Hyatt, the curator and director of the Nomad Gallery.

Born in Lahore, Prof Dr Rahat Naveed Masud discovered her talent for art through a conducive atmosphere at home.

— Dawn
— Dawn

Ms Masud likes to observe and then express the hidden and unspoken sentiments and fantasies through the characterisation of a common woman of the Pakistani society, conscious, resilient and responsive to her environment, but never at the cost of her femininity.

“Artists are very sensitive people; they feel the happenings in their surroundings deeply and express through their work,” she said.

Dr Masud has participated in over a hundred solo and group shows in major cities in Pakistan and abroad.

Akram Dost Baloch is an internationally acclaimed artist from Nushki, one of the culturally-rich towns in Balochistan.

— Dawn
— Dawn

His latest body of work reflects on the gloomy and suffocative atmosphere and the pain of the people.

A graduate of the National College of Arts, Lahore, Mr Baloch is currently serving as chairman of the University of Balochistan.

The themes of his paintings are wide-ranging inspired by the traditional motifs of Balochistan. He wrote his PhD dissertation on the traditional patterns of Baloch embroidery and handicrafts.

In his latest body of figurative work, Mr Baloch has tried to represent the people of Balochistan, their lives, traditions and culture in their true perspective.

Mr Baloch’s works give a voice to women who want to pursue their dreams and passions. Despite the success he has garnered over the years, he is still proud of his roots, and continues to work for the promotion of his rich culture.

For Mr Akram Dost, “art serves two functions; first comes its redemptive quality, and second, it’s capacity to bear witness to, and speak for the despairing side of human existence. While the first raises us, it is only with a keen perception of the latter that the aching need for and the requisite perception to find redemption can be attained. Such has been the prime motive for my practice over these many years.”

— Dawn
— Dawn

“Tortured expressions, contorted features, piercing eyes and huddled bodies” is how art critique Quddus Mirza explains his imagery.

Nahid Raza is one of the trendsetters of her generation.

“Nahid Raza’s art is of a feminist perspective reflecting the society, patriarchy, and her experiences as a female artist struggling to survive in a male-dominated world,” said Ms Hyatt.

Her latest work reflects an immense connection with her roots, she said

Her observations of life around her, strengthened by personal experience, led her to explore issues on women’s rights, violence and the expectations of society. These topics have been important in the shaping of her aesthetic vision.

Sadaf Naeem’s artwork is refreshing. She enrolled in 2019 in MFA at the University of Hawaii at Manoa, US

She has participated in many solo and group shows in Pakistan and abroad.

She is also a recipient of the “Award of merit in the memory of Ethel Portner” 2020, Hawaii, USA, Nigaah Award 2017 in landscape painting.

Her work is a truly feminine narrative, creating at its centre intimate, secure spaces of inherent womanliness. For women, both in the real world and in fiction, autonomy of space, particularly personal physical space, is essential.

Ms Sadaf’s art is a foray into spatial explorations of what it means to be a woman in the South Asian society.

“Consisting of patchworks of imagery from outside spaces, Ms Sadaf’s paintings conjure up a strange, feminine nostalgia. Potted plants on mossy grass merge into concrete walls, intensely leafy trees fade into sharp pink skies,” says Ms Hyatt.

Published in Dawn, June 11th, 2020

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