Of self-expression, love and history…

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A group exhibition of recent artworks by Hadia Moiz, Kiran Saeed and Sobia Ahmed is running at the Chawkandi Art gallery until January 18.
According to Moiz, the main oeuvre is to express herself in a true way, which is why her entire work is an interpretation of her thoughts.
She paints whatever she absorbs from her surroundings. Sometimes, she might not express herself in words, but she has a medium – painting – which openly speaks for her and allows her to express everything she feels.
“I started my professional career in 2005, and since then, I have been trying to do something new in every piece of my work,” she said.
Her imagery has evolved a lot in the past few years, and she prefers miniature painting the most, in which she uses opaque water colours, tea wash, paint wash and silver paper.
However, she enjoys reaching out to different aspects in painting. Her inspiration comes from her surroundings, “because there is a lot going on around us. It’s good at times, but most of the time, it’s evil.” Saeed said, “Chasing love, chasing never-ending happiness. If love and its happiness exist, its illusion takes us to a newborn state of mind and one can appreciate its sweetness more profoundly in its absence.”
But, she added, it’s all ephemeral and “we are nothing more than flesh, which inevitably will be rotten. It is the sweetness of love that suppresses the bitter monster inside us.”
She said she is not a thinker or a visionary, as life did not challenge her too much. “I am just a sensitive person whom life is continuously asking questions,” she added.
She is narrating these thoughts and expressing them in the form of a story, and while creating her own vocabulary and developing a relationship of one frame with another, a chain of links is created that strengthens her expression of storytelling.
Quoting Orhan Pamuk from his book ‘My Name Is Red’, she said, “Perhaps one day someone from a distant land will listen to this story of mine. Isn’t this what lies behind the desire to be inscribed in the pages of a book?”
Ahmed’s work concentrates on history and the great emperors of the Subcontinent. “These emperors had particular mindsets and an air about themselves,” she said.
Obviously, she added, they were kind, but they behaved like and expected to be treated as gods and proclaimed themselves to be the shadow of God.
This kind of an attitude within the rich and the influential, the segregation and the concept of being superior, is still present in the divided Subcontinent, she said.
“In my opinion, nothing much has changed since the 16th century, except for the dates,” she added.
Her images are a contrast of the present times and the past: “it is the parallels that I draw between a common man and an emperor. In doing so, I wish to show that the brutality, cruelty or the glory and the glitter of the past are quite the same as today.”