Poppy Seed

Urdu Reading Group

Posted in Alternative happenings by ps31 on July 10, 2011

Every other Sunday, eminent writer Asif Farrukhi leads an Urdu reading group at Poppy Seed.  In the wake of the Framing the Local Context series of talks, many of us (20 and 30 somethings) felt we needed and wanted to learn more about Urdu fiction and didn’t even know where to begin.  Asif Farrukhi, who had been one of the speakers at the talks, offered to be the torch bearer to allow facilitated access.  We are also regularly joined by Sheema Kirmani and Asma Mundrawala who are so well-versed in Urdu literature and this makes discussions became much more multifaceted and interesting.  Less regular but prominent visitors are Tanvir Anjum and Afzal Ahmed Syed.

The group has met with several guest readers, such as Omar Memon, Fehmida Riaz, Zehra Nigah, Amar Mehboob and also made a trip to Mr. Lutfullah’s residence where he shared with us some recordings of writers like Ismat Chughtai reading their own work.

Tradition and Art Seminar online

Posted in Uncategorized by ps31 on June 22, 2011

To view the proceedings of the Seminar, held 30th April, 2011, peruse the following links:

Dr. Ejaz Akram, Associate Professor, LUMS: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=SrCjs7yhLac

Dr. Wahab Suri, Associate Professor, Karachi University: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=bcxhH5Bwl5o

Dr. Basit Koshul, Associate Professor, LUMS: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=UsOzLBREhzc

Taimoor Khan Mumtaz, Trustee, Baytunur: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1jJwnHkIO70

Naiza Khan, Artist: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ppRm3jbNrE4

Salwat Ali, Art Critic: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Kl70b7sJriQ

Sumbul Khan, Curator, Poppy Seed: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Q4O7yOX42jY

The Urban Condition

Posted in Exhibitions by ps31 on May 14, 2011

In “The Urban Condition” (May 19th – Jun 5th, 2011) three artists explore the contradictions and paradoxes of living in a city constantly transforming because of technology, struggling with issues of class and exploitation and yet continuing to hope for something better, as the folklore they grew up on had promised.

Amber Hammad’s work explores how the virtual world, conjured for us by means of modern technology compares to the gritty reality that is also a product of the destructive potential of technology – both experiences invariably inform the ‘hybrids’ we have become.  Saba Khan reflects on the irony of a craftperson’s predicament who helps manufacture commodities that s/he will never use her/himself.  In the wake of this criticality, Sana Arjumand invokes belief in divine help that she grew up on, of “noor” and “farishtey” who are said to come to one’s assistance in times of crisis.

(click on each image to enlarge)

Sana Arjumand. In the Playground: Nurture 2010. Acrylic and oil on canvas. 3ft by 4 ft.

Sana Arjumand. In the Playground: Dialogue (2011).  Acrylic and oil on canvas. 4 ft by 3 ft. red dot

Sana Arjumand. In the Playground: Voyage (2011). Acrylic and oil on canvas. 4 ft by 4 ft.

 Saba Khan. Big City (2010).  Rhinestones, sequins, thread on velvet. 38″ by 53″.

Saba Khan. More Prosperity (2010). Thread and buttons on fabric. 60″ by 58″.

Saba Khan. The Party Generator (2010). Sequins, plastic flowers, applique, thread on fabric. 60″ by 58″. red dot

 Amber Hammad. Half-life News. Digital print on canvas (ed 1 of 3)

Amber Hammad. Modern warfare. Digital print on canvas (ed 1 of 3)

Amber Hammad. Teken-me. Digital print on canvas (ed 2 of 3)

Seminar: Tradition and Art (April 30th, 2011)

Posted in Alternative happenings by ps31 on April 21, 2011

What’s Hot? (April 3rd – 17th, 2011)

Posted in Exhibitions by ps31 on April 7, 2011

“What’s hot?” or should we ask, What’s hot now?  Since Andy Warhol popular culture has been equated with an ordinariness that is antithetical to bourgeois taste.  Whereas Warhol’s soup can symbolized “common” experience, Warhol himself claimed to partake of it.  In contrast, when local tropes of popular culture such as the truck art aesthetic, the mazar and the dhaba, are used, they have most often been external to the artists’ own realm of lived experience.   In the use of popular culture as muse then, a subliminal assertion of class affiliation is at play.  “What’s hot?” asked artists whose work reflected an interest in “the popular” (in terms of subject matter and/or materiality) to investigate, through their own particular subject positions, locales where contemporary popular trends perforate class boundaries.  The artists found these sites to be lawn prints, lace, Mills & Boon romances, the Urdu digest, cooking shows, Faiz Ahmed Faiz, green tea, Coke, and inescapably, religion.  

 Participating artists are: Sehba Maruf, Danish Ahmed, Sophia Mairaj, Malika Abbas, Sumaiya Jilani, Muhammad Ali.

  (click on each image for a larger view)

Danish Ahmed. Coke Mehrab (diptych). 2011. Silk screen and acrylic on canvas. 18in x 18in each



Danish Ahmed. Coke Jaali (diptych). 2011. Silk screen and acrylic on canvas. 18in x 18in each red dot

Danish Ahmed. Coke Gumbad (diptych). 2011. Silk screen and acrylic on canvas. 18in x 18in each

Sophia Mairaj. Khatoon ka Dastarkwhan. 2011. Digest cuttings on paper. 44in x 36in.

Sophia Mairaj. Cover Girl. 2011. Oil on canvas. 30in x 40in. red dot

Muhammad Ali. Green Tea without Sugar. 2011. Mixed media. Approx 23.5in x 49in

 

 

 

 

 

 

Muhammad Ali. Green Tea Without Sugar. Details.

 

 

 

 

Muhammad Ali. zubeida@live.com. 2011. Needlework on fabric. 27.5in x 30.5in.

Muhammad Ali. Table for Two. 2011. Mixed media. Dimensions variable. red dot

Sehba Maruf. Three in a Box. 2011. Collage. 6in x 19in.

Sehba Maruf. Circus of Madness. 2011. Collage. 32in x 26in.

Malika Abbas. Treasure Box. 2011. Mixed media on watercolor paper. Approx 29in x 16in.

Malika Abbas. Bandwagon Series 2. 2011. Mixed media on watercolor paper. Approx 7.5in x 7in.

Malika Abbas. Bandwagon Series 3. 2011. Mixed media on watercolor paper. Approx 7.5in x 7in.

Malika Abbas. Bandwagon Series 4. 2011. Mixed media on watercolor paper. Approx 7.5in x 7in.

Malika Abbas. Bandwagon Series 5. 2011. Mixed media on watercolor paper. Approx 7.5in x 7.25in.

Malika Abbas. Bandwagon Series 6. 2011. Mixed media on watercolor paper. 7.5in x 7in.

 Malika Abbas. Bandwagon Series 1. 2011. Mixed media on watercolor paper. Approx 7.5in x 5in.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 Sumaiya Jillani. T-shirt (front and back). 2011. Screen print on cotton t-shirt. Edition 1 of 6.

 

 

 

The Inquiry of Art – a solo by Hasnat Mehmood

Posted in Exhibitions by ps31 on February 28, 2011

 About “The Inquiry of Art” (Feb 27th – Mar 13th, 2011), Hasnat Mehmood writes:

  “The body of work produced for this show is an investigation of the very basics of Pakistani art in the present times. For this purpose I asked my colleagues to provide me with names of people (writers, visual artists, poets, directors, musicians or anybody else) who have/had inspired his/her work or represent his/her philosophy. I then inscribed these names on to miniature books and placed them on a shelf, resulting in a “portrait” of the artist, critic, or curator.

I think that art has never been an individual’s effort only; it has always been produced according to the times in which the artist lives. These portraits articulate this phenomenon because viewers will find a cross listing of writers, etc. from one portrait to the next, indicating a specificity of time and place.

 This project is also an historical chronicle because viewers can actually go through the names of influential people in a portrait and look up those writings of an author or works of an artist to clearly see how the influences of other people construct the portrait’s artist or critic.

 I believe when we see something it becomes part of us and it can either influence us on an unconscious level, or we sometimes knowingly construct something in response to that. I like it when we opt for the latter and are consciously aware of the influence, give due credit to the person from whom we got the idea. This is a way to initiate dialogue, which is a healthy phenomenon.

 Art is dead; long live Art!”

(click on each image for a larger view)

Portraits: The Inquiry of Art (Wall I). Letraset, vinyl letters on handmade books. Dimensions Variable.

 

 Portraits: The Inquiry of Art (Wall II). Letraset, vinyl letters on handmade books. Dimensions Variable.

Portraits: The Inquiry of Art – Risham Syed. Letraset, vinyl letters on handmade books.

 

Portraits: The Inquiry of Art – Naiza Khan. Letraset, vinyl letters on handmade books.

 

Portraits: The Inquiry of Art – Anwar Saeed. Letraset, vinyl letters on handmade books.

 

Portraits: The Inquiry of Art – Ahsan Jamal. Letraset, vinyl letters on handmade books.

 

Portraits: The Inquiry of Art – Ayesha Jatoi. Letraset, vinyl letters on handmade books.

 

Portraits: The Inquiry of Art – Ayaz Jokhio. Letraset, vinyl letters on handmade books.

 

Portraits: The Inquiry of Art - Atteqa Ali. Letraset, vinyl letters on handmade books.

 

Portraits: The Inquiry of Art – Quddus Mirza. Letraset, vinyl letters on handmade books.

 

Portraits: The Inquiry of Art – Imran Channa. Letraset, vinyl letters on handmade books.

Portraits: The Inquiry of Art -Umer Butt. Letraset, vinyl letters on the pillar.

Portrait-Do it Yourself. 886 handmade books in wooden shelves. 6 shelves of dimensions 36in x 18in x 4in each.

Portrait-Do it Yourself (detail).

Portrait-Do it Yourself (detail 2).

 

Hasnat Mehmood. Note book series. Bank note collages on hand made books. Variable.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Note book series (details: book 3).

 

 

 

 

 

 

Note book series (detail Book 21).

 

 

 

 

 

 

Note book series (detail Book 33).

Inflation Design (triptych). Bank note collage on vasli. 40 x 30inch each.

Flirting with Bank Notes I. Bank note collages on illustration board. 33.5in x 41.5in.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

         Flirting with Bank Notes I (details).

 

Flirting with Bank Notes II. Bank note collages on illustration board. 33.5in x 41.5in. 

 

 

 

 

       Flirting with Bank Notes II (details)

“Calling All Heroes” (Feb 4th – 20th, 2011)

Posted in Exhibitions by ps31 on February 10, 2011

“Calling All Heroes” is Danish Raza’s second solo exhibition. About this body of work, he writes: We live in a society of reluctant heroes.  Heroes with the power of a million exploding suns sit idly, unable to recongize their true potential, waiting for a true hero to save the day.  In truth, we don’t need super powers to make a change. It takes only willingness.  Here is a call to all reluctant heroes, come out, come out, wherever you are!”

(click on each image for a larger view)

Danish Raza. Picture of a Self. 2011. Acrylic on canvas. 24in x 30in. red dot

Danish Raza. The Reluctant Hero. 2011. Pen and digital print on paper. 11in x 8.5in.

Danish Raza. Follow the Twitters. 2011. Pen and digital print on paper. 11in x 8.5in. red dot

Danish Raza. Coming Home. 2011. Pen and digital print on paper. 11in x 8.5in. red dot

Dansh Raza. Triumph of Evil. 2011. Pen and digital print on paper. 11in x 8.5in. red dot

Danish Raza. The Man with 100 Wings. 2011. Pen and digital print on paper. 11in x 8.5in.

Danish Raza. Super Sacrificial Goat. 2011. Pen and digital print on paper. 11in x 8.5in.

Danish Raza. Alter Ego. 2011. Pen and digital print on paper. 11in x 8.5in. red dot

Danish Raza. Empathy. 2010. Acrylics on canvas. 4ft x 3ft.

Danish Raza. Apathy. 2011. Acrylic on canvas. 4ft x 3ft.


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Prying

Posted in Exhibitions by ps31 on January 13, 2011

The camera is a device often critiqued for prying.  “Prying” (January 15th – 26th, 2011) presents the works of three artists where each of the results of the prying lens leads the viewer through a different kind of vicarious experience.

Umer Adil’s documentary photographs from the rural areas of Pakistan capture a defiant affront to the prying of the lens.  Lali’s photographs make the viewer conscious, and perhaps even a little guilty, of prying into her “autobiographical” sequences. Najia Omer’s mixed media canvases pry into her current predicament, which is fraught with having to make adjustments with changing circumstances. 

Mehreen Khalid, better known as Lali, got her B.F.A. in printmaking from N.C.A. in 2003 and an M.F.A. in Photography from Pratt Institute (2009) where she was a Fulbright Scholar. She has participated in several exhibitions in New York, Lahore and Islamabad.  “Prying” is her first show in Karachi.  She is currently an Associate Professor at the National College of Arts, Lahore.

Najia Omer received her B.F.A. from the Indus Valley School of Art and Architecture in 2008.

Umer Adil graduated from the Indus Valley School of Art and Architecture with a B.F.A. in Communication Design in 2002.  He is primarily a documentary film maker and also exhibits his photographic work. 

(click on each image for larger view)

Umer Adil. Intrusions 1 (2009). Digital print on Kodak lustre photo paper. 12″ x 18″.

 

Umer Adil. Intrusions 2. (2007) Edition 1 of 5. Digital print on Kodak lustre photo paper.18″ x 12″.

 

Umer Adil. Intrustions 3 (2008). Edition 1 of 5. Digital print on Kodak lustre photo paper. 18″ x 12″.

 

Umer Adil. Intrusions 4 (2007). Edition 1 of 5. Digital print on 180gm coated matte paper. 30″ x12″. red dot

 

Umer Adil. Intrusions 5 (2009). Edition 1 of 5. Digital print on 180gm coated matte paper. 30″ x 12″.

 

 Umer Adil. Intrusions 6 (2010). Edition 1 of 5. Digital print on Kodak lustre photo paper. 18″ x 12″.

 

Umer Adil. Intrusions 7 (2010). Edition 1 of 5. Digital print on Kodak lustre photo paper. 18″ x 12″.

 

Umer Adil. Intrusions 8 (2000). Edition 1 of 5. Black and white photograph on Kodak Lustre photo paper.12″ x 18″.

 

Lali Khalid. Taimur and I, Canoneer Court Brooklyn (2009). Edition 1 of 5.  Digital C Print. 30″ x 20″. red dot

 

Lali Khalid. Saroos, Gulberg III, Lahore (2009). Edition 1 of 5.  Archival inkjet print. 24″ x 24″.

 

Lali Khalid. Taimur and I, Breakfast Table II, 707 Sylvan Rd. Michigan (2010). Edition 1 of 5. Digital C Print. 30″ x 20″.

 

Lali. Taimur and I, Breakfast Table I, 707 Sylvan Rd. Michigan (2010). Digital C Print. 30″ x 20″.

 

Lali. Me, Last Day, 707 Sylvan Rd. Michigan (2010). Digital C Print. 30″ x 20″.

 

Lali Khalid. 2573 Fair Ave. Ohio (2010). Edition 1 of 5. Archival Inkjet Print. 24″ x 24″.

 

Lali Khalid. Me, Dining Room, 1318 West Argyle Chicago (2010). Edition 1 of 5.  Archival inkjet print. 24″ x 24″.

 

Lali Khalid. Me, Attic, 2573 Fair Ave. Ohio (2010). Edition 1 of 5.  Digital C Print. 24″ x 24″.

 

Lali Khalid. Me, Cricket Ground, Aitchison College, Lahore (2009). Edition 1 of 5.  Archival inkjet print. 24″ x 24″.

Najia Omer. Position 1. Digital print and mixed media on paper. 8″ x12.5″.

Najia Omer. Position 2. Digital print and mixed media on paper. 8″ x12.5″.

Najia Omer. Position 3. Digital print and mixed media on paper. 8″ x12.5″.

 

Najia Omer. Position 4. Digital print and mixed media on paper. 8″ x12.5″.

Najia Omer. Position 5. Digital print and mixed media on paper. 8″ x12.5″.

Najia Omer. Position 6. Digital print and mixed media on paper. 8″ x12.5″.

Salwat Ali and Amra Ali on “Who’s Afraid of Theory?”

Posted in Critic's voices by ps31 on December 19, 2010

Salwat Ali. “Who’s Afraid of Art Theory?” in Dawn Gallery, Sunday, December 5th, 2010.

http://www.dawn.com/2010/12/05/local-perspective-who%e2%80%99s-afraid-of-art-theory.html

and a sister piece on theory itself taking cue from the exhibition:

Salwat Ali. “The Intellectual Debate” in Dawn Gallery, Sunday, December 5th, 2010

http://www.dawn.com/2010/12/05/discourse-the-intellectual-debate.html

Amra Ali. A Critical Discourse in The News on Sunday, Nov. 28th, 2010

http://jang.com.pk/thenews/nov2010-weekly/nos-28-11-2010/enc.htm#4

Representational is not a Dirty Word (Dec 4th – 19th, 2010)

Posted in Exhibitions by ps31 on December 3, 2010

Ever since the 80’s, in Pakistan Representational Art has had to fight for legitimacy as a genre. It was first denigrated by Zia’s pseudo Islamist policies which favoured calligraphy and abstraction over representational work. In the more recent shift towards the conceptual, “representational” is a term assigned almost pejoratively to work whose primary interest is form, even so when the concerns in some work are not altogether divested of meaning or narrative. This show seeks to “represent” four artists who enjoy working in the representational genre because “representational” is not a dirty word. The artists are Madiha Hyder, Durrab Tariq, Saleem Ansari and Farazeh Syed.

Madiha Hyder. Mad World (A). 2010. Graphite and charcoal powder, pencils, conte, newspaper clippings on canvas. 4ft x 3ft.

Madiha Hyder. Mad World (B) (dyptich). 2010. Graphite and charcoal powder, pencils, conte, newspaper clippings on canvas. 6ft x 4ft. red dot

Madiha Hyder. Mad World (C). 2010. Graphite and charcoal powder, pencils, conte, newspaper clippings on canvas.      3 ft x 4ft. red dot

Madiha Hyder. Mad World (D). 2010. Graphite and charcoal powder, pencils, conte, newspaper clippings on canvas.   4ft x 3ft. red dot

Madiha Hyder. Mad World (E). 2010. Graphite and charcoal powder, pencils, conte, newspaper clippings on canvas.   3ft x 4ft.

Durrab Tariq. Untitled. 2010. Oil on canvas. Diameter: 42inches.

Durrab Tariq. Untitled. 2010. Oil on canvas. Diameter: 17.5inches. red dot

Durrab Tariq. Untitled. 2010. Oil on canvas. Diameter: 26inches.red dot

Durrab Tariq. Untitled. 2010. Oil on canvas. Diameter: 31inches.

Durrab Tariq. Untitled. 2010. Oil on canvas. Diameter: 31 inches.

Durrab Tariq. Untitled. 2010. Oil on canvas. Diameter: 40inches.

Durrab Tariq. Untitled. 2010. Oil on canvas. Diameter: 28.75inches.

 Saleem Ansari. Banyan 2. 2010.Wood cut. 11in x 23.5in.

Saleem Ansari. Banyan 5. 2010. Wood cut. 18in x 29.5in.

Saleem Ansari. Banyan 4. 2010. Wood cut. 15in x 29in.

Saleem Ansari. Banyan 1. 2010. Wood cut. 11.5in x 35in.

Saleem Ansari. Banyan 3. 2010. Wood cut. 15in x 25in.

Saleem Ansari. Banyan 6. 2010. Wood cut. 15in x 29.5in.

Farazeh Syed. Saima. 2010. Oil on canvas. 36in x 30in.

Farazeh Syed. Sonia.  2010. Oil on canvas. 30in x 36in.

Farazeh Syed. Noori 3. 2009. Oil on board. 24”x30”.

Farazeh Syed. Noori 4.  2009. Oil on canvas.  24”x30”.

Farazeh Syed. Noori 5.  2009. Oil on canvas.  30”x36”.

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