Syed Iqbal’s retrospective on displayZiaul Hasan
Internationally acclaimed artist Syed Iqbal is displaying his selective works of the past two decades in his solo show at the Bengal Gallery of Fine Arts, Dhanmondi.
The retrospective show not only gives a general overview of his kaleidoscopic journey but is an artistic errand of his endeavours as well.
The exhibition titled ‘Colours from the Soul’ is to some extent a comeback venture for the artist who has not taken part in any solo exhibition since 2001. ‘In the past 12 years, I have visited Dhaka in several occasions but never offered a solo art show. In this exhibition, I have displayed my selected paintings that I have created during my eventful artistic journey,’ shared the artist with New Age.
The exhibition features 48 paintings focusing on subject matters that are essentially Eastern in nature despite the artist’s long stay in Canada. His paintings of Lord Krishna with the Red, Mind the Gap, Memory of Love, Dream Suemer, Buddha, Labonno and I Fly and Fly, all depict themes very familiar to the people in the subcontinent. However, as a conscious artist, Iqbal has brought out worldwide predicaments like the global warming in paintings like Tears of the Nature, Aqualife and others.
The paintings are semi-abstract in nature. ‘My paintings are surrealistic; still, they have signs and subject matters that can easily be comprehensible on a minute’s observation,’ shared the artist.
In choosing the medium, Iqbal has confined himself to acrylic but brought in variation by experimenting with a substance named resin on his paintings. ‘It is a mixture of a few chemicals that I use in my paintings,’ revealed the artist. The experimentation did pay off as the paintings had a glittery effect making them appealing to the eye even from a distance.
The colours used were the vibrant shades of red, green, orange, yellow and other colours.
One of the most figurative paintings on the exhibition is Labonno and I Fly and Fly, which depicts a young man and a young lady both with angle like wings flying high in the sky along with a white pigeon. ‘The painting is one of my tributes to the 150th birth anniversary of poet Rabindranath Tagore,’ informed Syed Iqbal, who also explained that Labonno is the renowned female character from Tagore’s classic Shesher Kobita.
The most vibrant paintings of the exhibition are Mind the Gap 1 and 2. Though they are two separate artworks, they convey a single theme. The paintings kept side by side would look like a continuation painting; with a man and a woman extending their hands beyond the frame. The huge butterfly wings on the man and the woman give a very surrealistic feeling to the painting. The couple, however, can never be united as they are captured within the frames two different paintings. ‘Through the paintings, I wanted to show the social obstructions that keep lovers separated in our country,’ said Iqbal.
Inaugurated on September 10, the exhibition will remain open from 12:00pm to 8:00pm everyday till September 19.
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