Poppy Seed

“Dear Diary” – the Reading

Posted in Alternative happenings, Exhibit Openings by ps31 on December 22, 2009

 “Dear Diary” was planned as an interdisplinary event that sought to explore the relationship between the visual arts and literature.  Since journal writing itself is a textual activity that was being translated in to the visual space through the art work, we thought it would also be interesting to examine how writers have chosen personal narratives to develop fiction and autobiography. 

Our readers, (left to right) Sanam, Momin, Zoe and Omar, came to the gallery a week prior to the exhibition opening to see and discuss the art work and formulated their responses to them through selected pieces of literature. 


The reading was well received. Many thought it made the experience of the exhibit more rounded and relatable.  The  revival of the practise of a reading was commended by the older generation who remembered it being a vital part of the Karachi culturescape in the 70’s. 

Some of the selected excerpts are as follows:

Zoe’s response to the show: 

“What we remember lacks the hard edge of fact.  To help us along we create little fictions, highly subtle and individual scenarios which clairfy and shape our experience.  The remembered event becomes a fiction, a structure made to accomodate certain feelings…If it weren’t for these structures, art would be too personal for the artist to create, much less for the audience to grasp.  Even film, the most literal of  all the arts, is edited.” –Jerzy Kozinski.

Momin’s response to Samar Zia’s work:

The scapula is a flat triangular shaped bone which lies on the posterior superficial to the ribs and separated from them by muscle.

Shuttered like a fan no-one suspects your shoulder blades of wings. While you lay on your belly I kneaded the hard edges of your flight. You are a fallen angel but still as the angels are; body light as a dragonfly, great gold wings cut across the sun.

If I’m not careful you’ll cut me. If I slip my hand too casually down the sharp side of your scapula I will lift away a bleeding palm. I know the stigmata of presumption. The wound that will not heal if I take you for granted. Nail me to you. I will ride you like a nightmare. You are the winged horse Pegasus who would not be saddled. Strain under me. I want to see your muscle sheath flex and stretch. Such innocent triangles holding hidden strength. Don’t rear at me with unfolding power. I fear you in our bed when I put out my hands to touch you and feel the twin razors turned towards me. You sleep with your back towards me so that I will know the full extent of you. It is sufficient.” — Jeanette Winterson in Written on the Body.


The Opening Nov.19th, 2009

Posted in Exhibit Openings by ps31 on November 23, 2009

Marjorie Hussain (left), Roohi Ahmed

Anwar Maqsood (left), Nahid Raza, Rashid Maqsood, Irfan Hasan

Usman Ghori and Asad Hussain (far left), Rumana Hussain, Niilofur Farrukh, Murtaza Vaid, Mukhtar Hussain

Hussain Naqvi, Sumbul Khan

Munawar Ali Syed, Abdul Jabbar Gul, Nafees Ghaznavi

Abdullah Syed, Sumaira Tazeen

Abdullah Syed (left), Asad Hussain (back), Roohi Ahmed (in black), Sumbul Khan, Munawar Ali Syed (right)