Exhibitions open at Al-Hamra and NCA


Two exhibitions were held on Monday. Shireen Ikramullah’s painting exhibition opened at the Al-Hamra Art Gallery, where several people came to view her work. “I have experimented this time and came up with the idea to dabble with colours,” said Ikramullah, talking to Pakistan Today. “However, though I chose to work with blue and orange as the basic hue colours, I could not help but include some others also,” she says. ‘Between Blue and Orange’, the title of the exhibition was an excellent depiction of Shireen’s work. The paintings were not only attractive to lovers of abstract and expressionist art, they were also paintings that left it open to the audience to perceive what was in the paintings according to their own insight. “Everything that I have shown in my paintings has been an inspiration of nature,” says Shireen. “Any kind of forms that can be seen within the painting that may look like something else is purely coincidental because I have not intended to draw anything in its real form,” she says.
But besides nature, there is also a metaphysical depiction in Shireen’s work. Everything intangible it seems has been expressed by her on these canvases, all diffusing from orange to blue into several colours, which spill into each other’s borders. It is like a flurry of thoughts that intertwine into each other.
It is like one of her paintings has been named, ‘a physical manifestation of the sub-conscious’. Shireen graduated from Lahore’s National College of Arts in 2006. She followed up with several exhibitions at some of Islamabad’s premier art galleries, as well as completed commission work for private international groups, including the Dag Hammarskjold building in New York.
In 2009, Shireen completed her Masters in Art Galleries and Museum Studies from the University of Manchester. In addition to interning at the Manchester Museum, she completed research in the educational and cultural effects by working museums in Pakistan.
Meanwhile, in NCA’s Zahoorul Ikhlaq Gallery, a photography display entitled ‘Revisiting Mall Road’ opened. This exhibition of photographic prints of The Mall, one of the major arteries of the city, can be seen from December 12 to 15, where the road’s images from its inception during British rule to more recent times can be seen.
The exhibition aims at reclaiming and revitalising the core values and representations of an inclusive culture that The Mall’s ambience has reflected for over a century. The display’s objective is to sensitise awareness about an inclusive cultural heritage of a South Asian identity threatened by high-paced urbanisation and expansion of Lahore under pressures of globalisation and modernity.
The rate prints have been provided by The Mall’s archives unit and Loh Kot Cultural and Heritage Society Lahore. The exhibition forms part of the vision of NCA’s Research and Publication Center, to reclaim Pakistan’s legacy of an inclusive culture and will be followed by other events throughout the next year.
The exhibition was inaugurated by Masood Khan, technical director of the Agha Khan Cultural Service, Imrana Tiwana of Lahore Bachao Tehreek and an urban planner, Faisal Sajjad, department of architecture, NCA, and Suroosh Irfani, director research and publication centre NCA. Dr Abbas Famori, director of the Iranian Cultural Centre Lahore was the chief guest.