Home »Weekend Magazine » Art Facts: Subliminal messages

Soul is an intrinsic part of our body; it is the basic and essential element of life which makes us alive. And artist Sana Kazi explored the secrets of our soul in her paintings in a solo show titled 'Ek Raaz' at Sanat Gallery, Karachi.

I have been visiting art galleries regularly but after a long time I went for the preview of this exhibition. Technically and subject wise the work was very strong. Sana amazingly used techniques in a unique style which artist don't use nowadays.

When I met Sana Kazi I asked her in how many days she painted eleven paintings exhibited at the show. She told that she has completed them in one year working approximately 18 hours a day.

While going through her paintings I got involved in the painting's colours and technique as all the works she has done can be seen exactly in her paintings. Nowadays when you asked an artist what he/she has done in the paintings he/she couldn't explain what they have worked. They were describing something else and have done some other thing.

In a solo show some paintings attract viewers but in Sana Kazi's exhibition each and every painting speaks for itself and talks to the viewers who wanted to look deeper and more carefully in the subject she has discussed in the paintings.

She discussed effectively the complex relationship of our body with our soul. The soul guides us with subliminal messages whole life. She wanted to know life hereafter.

The titles of the paintings: Qalb-e-Nazr, Khwaab ka Rang, Sub Khudi Hai, Ghoom, Muntaqil, Adab, Hukm Mai, Her Waqt, Her Dum, and Zaahir Bhi explained the theme of the paintings and help viewer in understanding the message clearly.

The backgrounds of Sana's work were in mostly grey colour just like ashes. "We are all looking to get connected to our Mentor between gaps of two different connotations about ashes, 'rise up from the ashes' and 'reduced to ashes'," Sana elaborated.

The grey background served as a basic ground for her theme. She variegated her paintings through splashes of bright and bold colours - yellows, reds, purples, blues, and greens. Between these lively colours emerged human figures mostly in cloudy white representing our soul. The figures in group of three, two and single in various postures seemed to find the answer to the unseen life. The quest of knowing what lies beyond what will be our life.

Her paintings revealed the self-reflection of the figures as if every human being tried to find himself/herself. Some of the figures have clear facial expressions and body structures while others were distorted and blur.

The pensive figures were in a mood of contemplation deeply reflecting on something serious through their body postures and eyes. Some figures had their wyes close and some with open eyes. In a few paintings a face of a person was painted in a yellow colour as if a spirit is soothing in an heavenly cool pale light with open and shut eyes the calm facial expressions of the figures showed the state of tranquillity their soul have achieved.

The paintings were painted by wood ashes, graphite, and dashes of colour on a wasli. The paint made out of dry pigments from various minerals and stones in the traditional technique of miniature painting called "pardakht" were used to create the figures. With a soft grainy textured style of painting larger strokes of colour were applied onto the surface.

In all the paintings human figures in a celestial body like form appeared to rise up from the ashes while the bright colours reflect beauty of a particular person. "For each soul's inception have a certain colour. What it maybe, we need to find," Sana esplained.

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