Spacebar, the longest key (on the keyboard), helps separate letters, words and, if seen metaphorically, two different worlds. It is a gap between two elements, signifying the completion and beginning of two different words. A key, without which it is difficult to understand and make meanings of words, separates the jumbled words and enables us to understand the meaning of life in a better way. Spacebar showcased the work of the recent graduates of Indus Valley School of Art and Architecture (2018) at Koel Galley, Karachi on June 11th, 2019.
Curated by Nurayah Sheikh Nabi, the exhibition exquisitely displayed the remarkable work of twenty-four artists, practicing with various art mediums.
The show mesmerised the viewers with its wide variety of art work created with multiple art mediums under one roof. From oils on canvas to the projection of an installation through new-media techniques, the exhibition undeniably proved to be a treat for the viewers. The unique approaches of the artists towards their work, kept the viewers engaged till the end.
Artist, Abeer Arshad, Hassan Aslam and Babar Feroz chose to convey their concern towards the nature with the help of their work. Abeer Arshad, enlightened the importance of environmental pollution by making ‘shrubs’ out of destructive and used bottle caps. She believes that environmental pollution is a vital cause of distress in today’s world. Babar Feroz educated the viewers about the importance of endangered wildlife of Pakistan. He emphasised on this issue by creating ceramic sculptures, using clay as a medium-taking something out of nature itself, to represent nature. He explained how animals are extremely significant for balanced ecosystem and for it to keep running we need to start thinking about the endangered wildlife.
Haya Esbhani, Sundas Ihsan and Osama Rehman Khan’s works helped viewers partake in their personal life by reliving their private memories. Esbhani recalls the dispersal of her joint family, and recreates the architectural space she once shared with them. This personalized artwork, created with terracotta, is a method for Esbhani to re-experience her memories. Khan also explains the importance of family and home through his work. By working on projection mapping, the artist collaborated sound and animation to express his emotions. With cartons- boxes used for packaging- being the primary medium, Khan explains how changing several homes throughout his life has created a completely different meaning of ‘space’ for him. Similarly, Ihsan by using acrylics on canvas explains the importance of the carton in her life and the effects of leaving a house behind when moving to a new place.
Artist Jaweria Shoaib, specialised in painting and printmaking, uses this opportunity to talk about the APS attack of December 16, 2014. Her work explains the post-trauma of the school shooting. By showing the absence of children, through photo etch and aquatint on paper, she draws focus towards their lack off presence.
The participating artists in the exhibition were Hassan Aslam, sundas Ihsan, Saleha Moeen Qureshi, Kiran Saleem, Ana Ali Kazimi, Haya Esbhani, Muzna Roghay, Babar Feroz, Yusra Taqi Allawala, Tooba Sehbaz, Asim Ameen, Samra Mekhri, Ayesha Ali, Schanza Khan, Aqsa Khan Nasir, Jaweria shoaib, Sahl Motiwala, Ansha Memon, Mahnoor Qazi, Shehzadi Kainat, Osama Rehman Khan, Zoya Arshad Farooqi, Sadia Safdar.
This exhibition marks a milestone for these young artists who are fresh graduates and would prove to be a stepping-stone for their future works and endeavours. Due to the unique concepts and their approach to address environmental issues through their work, they have done their part to create awareness for which they deserve a lot of attention and applause.
Spacebar continues at Koel Gallery, Karachi till 20th June 2019.