KARACHI: It is always heartening to see new talent emerging in art. In the last decade or so if Pakistan can be really proud of its creative output, then it’s in the field of fine visual art. There are top-notch institutions in major cities of the country such as Karachi and Lahore which are imparting quality education to young creative minds. A testimony to the claim is the latest exhibition titled Flower of a Blue Flame that’s under way at the Canvas Art Gallery.
The show puts on display works of 11 young artists from the National College of Arts, the Indus Valley School of Art and Architecture, Beaconhouse National University and the Punjab University College of Art and Design. They — Ahsan Memon, Ali Shariq Jamali, Anusha Ramchand Novlani, Amna Rahman, Haya Zaidi, Maisam Hussain, Mirza Zeeshan, Numair Abbasi, Ramsah Imran, Sameen Agha and Sanié Bokhari — were selected by the guest curator of the show Quddus Mirza.
Before touching upon the subject matter(s), one must mention the artists’ awe-inspiring technical prowess. Their lines are strong, their sense of symmetry is worth taking note of and their sense of aptly using light and space is astounding. Surely, apart from having tremendous potential, it has something to do with their training. Therefore it would be unjust not to praise their ‘understanding’ of how to create art.
As for their content, the rich variety that the viewer sees on display gives away their sensitivity to what’s happening in the society that they’ve grown up in. The words ‘flower’ and ‘flame’ in the title may alliterate to have a poetic effect, but they signify the two counter-forces that exist side by side in the environment the artists are meant to imbibe, and in certain cases, tolerate. The end result is worth visiting the gallery for.
The exhibition concludes on June 10.
Published in Dawn, June 10th, 2021