'Fish Meets Grill'

VM Art Gallery, ZVMG Rangoonwala Community Centre 

 March 2021

The title refers to a recipe as an anecdote for the ultimate fate of creatures cooked to reach charred perfection. If we think about the ‘manly’ activity of fishing, it is usually an idealised form of bonding and an attempt of being at one with nature. However, perhaps we should also consider how fanfare masculinity expressed through activities such as fishing and hunting leave traces of unwarranted developments and divisions in our environment through both intangible and seaborne ways. 

 

This is a story of disparate elements connected through autobiographical and fantastical accounts. The subtle kookiness of mythic sea life leaves us to ponder about fictitious beings and erased lands connecting architecture and storytelling. This body of work also takes into account the pleasure sought from consuming and participating in these narratives, animating marine life through colonial waves, and gendered footprints. Some of these stories are told by production houses like Disney or Netflix and some of the marine life stories are excavated through researchers and archaeologists. As we are embroiled in a perpetual contest of erasing diversity from the coast to the hills, pulling the land out from underneath others' feet, and wearing the skins of beings on our backs, it is safe to say we are at an irrevocable stage with our surroundings. These are the musings before the calamities.

 

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Detail of  'Seized' for Fish Meets Grill at VM Art Gallery, ZVMG Rangoonwala Community Centre, Karachi, Pakistan

Oak wood skins and plywood panels, approximately 9 by 12 feet 

Waterproof nylon, PVC, jersey, sequinned cloth and metal 

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'Too much of a good thing can be wonderful'

 Summer Show at Chelsea College of Arts 

July 2019

The following images are of a cumulative body of photographs inspired by unreasonably masculine men featured in film and literature. The silk curtains, 1980s fan and the cardamon macaroons briefly touch back with domestic and the feminine, environments which I am very familiar with.

Over a series of weeks, I was dressing up and putting on the outfits of easily identifiable men. My photographs were looking into the illusions behind power, mobility and sexuality which are embodied by both fictional and real men that are portrayed repeatedly in popular culture. 

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Detail of  installation at Chelsea College of Arts during the MA Summer/Thesis Show, July 2019

Digital prints on Silk Sensation (poly) 90 gsm measuring 300 cm by 143 cm hung on brass curtain rods. Within the triangle of curtains lies a wooden table with a vintage table fan and a plate of  cardamon and rosewater macaroons. 

Cleansed and Purified 

December 2018, Cookhouse Gallery, Chelsea College of Arts, London

 

Human beings have an endless fascination with beautifying and ‘purifying’ oneself to be fairer and softer until the idea of our identity is about the role we are obliged to play.  There is a bathing ritual originating from the Zoroastrian population of ancient Persia which utilises milk and rose petals and is continued as a tradition to celebrate a Zoroastrian child’s one year old birthday.

The setting aims to create a scenario with the viewer watching me bathe and extending an  invitation to eat with me. The strawberry cheesecake and the sickly candy pink table cloth clashes with antique crockery which is possibly a reflection of the bizarre mix of trashy with classy in the video.

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Detail of Cleansed and Purified installation at Cookhouse Gallery for Chelsea College of Arts

Table adorned with Parsi china with a home-made cheesecake set against a wall with a TV screen playing the film 

Blue Tower

At 63 Commissariat Lines, Saddar,

October 2017 for Karachi Biennale

 

A site specific installation utilising disposed off mirror windows which belonged to the property.. Previously used by an industrial family as a water purification plant, the sprawling dusty property is a hidden jewel amid concrete-block apartment buildings that dominate its surroundings. 

 

The mirror capsule with Astroturf and painted blue stripes was a comment on encroachment and the general architectural degradation and decay in Karachi. 

 

The viewers can see the estate reflecting in the mirrors as well as the  atrocious pastel blue apartments surrounding 63 Commissariat. 

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Detail of Blue Tower, at 63 Commissariat Lines, for Karachi Biennale, wood, oil, mirrors, astroturf,  with each door measuring 12 by 2.5 feet

 

Conqueror Series for The Past As Present,

September 2017, AAN Gandhara Art Space, Karachi 

Metal structures were used as casts and made upon specific measurements of a man’s head to create Parsi phetas.

 

A Gujarati pheta is a traditional Parsi hat which was and is still worn by men of prominence and stature, especially for auspiscious occasions. Due to the rather curious design of the pheta, it has been coined by today’s Parsis as the ‘letterbox nu topi’(the letterbox hat)

 

Through painting iconic photographs of colonial images, the visuals on the metal casts assert man’s need to conquer plunder and succeed through an aspiration of a glorious past.

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Detail of Conqueror Series at AAN Gandhara Art Space

Metal structures used to build hats with painted on with oil with each measuring 6 inches in diameter

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Degree Show, Department of Fine Art at the Indus Valley School of Art and Architecture, December 2015

The following images are from my thesis year exhibition in December 2015. I cleared up the department’s unused storage room - which was around 5ft 7inches in height - and made minor renovations to create a space that was both cumbersome to find and enter, forcing viewers to bend and take a seat on the bench.

 

This year long thesis project was a result of continuous burying around into family photographs and discovering an immense amount of information about my personal history which was difficult to relate to and envision living in the 21st century.

 

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Detail of BA Fine Art Degree Show  at Indus Valley School of Art and Architecture 

75 oil paintings mounted on lasani board arranged in the store room of the Fine Art Department. The installation is propped up by poles and wooden slabs.

In the corner hangs four Zoroastrian sudrehs, a spiritual garment that is physically adjust to one's weight and gender.