Titled Shams-u-Shamoos, a three-day exhibition of calligraphy, miniatures and paintings was inaugurated by Iranian Consul General Ahmed Mohammadi at the Arts Council on Tuesday afternoon. The CG was accompanied by director of the Iranian Cultural Centre Bahram Kian besides Arts Council’s president Mohammad Ahmed Shah and art director Shahid Rassam.
Although an important cricket World Cup semi-final match was under way at the time, a good number of art lovers attended the event organised by Khana-i-Farhang Iran. The cultural centre usually holds such events on its premises near the Clifton bridge, but for the public’s convenience it aptly chose the Arts Council for the event that will run for three days.
There were a total of 84 exhibits, copies of original artworks by Iranian masters, on display in the Ahmed Parvaiz art gallery.
The show is part of birth celebration of three holy persons
The exhibition is a reflection of devotion and mastery of Iranian artists. The calligraphic works are particularly awe-inspiring.
Most of the exhibits are paintings of tombs of revered personages in the various cities of Iran as the exhibition is part of a 10-day birth celebration of Imam Raza, Hazrat Ahmed bin Moosa Kazim and Bibi Fatima Masooma. The festivities are called Ashra-i-Karamat.
A documentary with English commentary was screened on the occasion to highlight and describe the various shrines, their history, architecture and religious and cultural significance.
Adeeba Khan, a young artist occupied a table with her seven pieces of calligraphy, done in sals nastaleeq hanging on a part of the wall behind her.
While being shown around the exhibition, the consul general stopped by Adeeba’s desk and showed a keen interest in her work, talked to the artist about the exhibits and appreciated them.
Adeeba is a mass communication graduate from the University of Karachi. She says she has been painting since her childhood, making portraits, landscapes and other forms of art, but for the last three years she has focused on calligraphy. She has already taken part in several group shows. Her work has been appreciated so much so that she was invited to Moscow as the chief guest at an international exhibition where she was one of the participants.
In her calligraphic work, she has mostly depicted the various names of Allah, His attributes and Quranic verses in eye-catching colours and shades.
She says she has learned calligraphy from Hamid Nasir, whom she regards highly. “I pursue art as a passion and do not see it as a career,” Adeeba remarked when asked if art has a wider scope than mass communication.
The exhibition will continue till Thursday, daily from 10am to 7pm.
Originally published in Dawn, July 10th, 2019