Empirical Empire

Artist: Noormah Jamal and Hoor Imad Sherpao
Opening Reception: Thursday, 1st February 2018 at 5 pm
Address: D-53/1, Block -4 Clifton. 03032239038

Artists Statements issued by the gallery:
Noormah Jamal:
‘The things that make me different are the things that make me.’
A statement that mimics every self-help guideline.
But what really is individuality? How does one discover their self worth?
What does one ask of others? Of jaded relationships? Or even themselves?
I find my work oscillating like a pendulum between these questions.
Trying, through my visuals, use of symbols (or lack there of) to depict the personal baggage that one may carry. How each person’s story and struggle is their own. What defines or separates an individual. When I picture people or my subjects of art, I avoid generalizing, trying instead to highlight their differences. In a world that groups people on the bases of geography, religion, race and sex, I feel the need to not let statistics be what define people.
In my work; the content and treatment go hand in hand where depicting the narrative is concerned.

Hoor Imad Sherpao:
Women figure heavily in my work. These women are all known to me in either a familial or communal capacity. Physical beauty is an important feature and source of negotiation both within my painted frame and outside it. However, my work not only visually relies on the idea of attractiveness but also features eerie, sublime elements of discomfort such as piercing expressions of the female, missing eyes and doppelgangers.
Putting all heavily used “oppressed women” clichés aside, I like to paint women the way I do to create a certain aura; a “play” between physical beauty and the radiation of emotion and tension through expression and body language.
My process involves film and photography in order to gather references that I edit several times before manually composing onto the ‘wasli’ (handmade paper). In order to achieve aesthetic satisfaction, I sometimes like to borrow and steal decorative elements that already exist in old Miniature Paintings and Pre-Raphaelite art. I love to experiment with color and to exaggerate tones such as the greens, purples and pinks while painting the human flesh. I admit I am a selfish artist; this ornamental, eye-catching and pleasant approach not only fulfills my aesthetic cravings but also transports me to a place where the viewers’ thoughts and tastes meet mine.
What do I want to say with my art? Born, raised and facing the music of this male dominated planet, I do question my role as not only as a female member, but a human of todays modern world. Contrary to playing the victim, I fully embrace feminine beauty by creating physically attractive visuals that radiate psychological and emotional tension, so when a person interacts with my work, they know that a woman was always meant to be a magnificent creature. Thats is the role I am playing.


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