Humans generally communicate with each other through verbal means of communication in the form of a language to express their feelings. However our whole body is capable of expressing emotions. Mostly when we are unable to talk because of certain barriers or restrictions we opt for facial and body gestures to interpret our desires and emotions.
These subtle gestures which are indicative of our perceived emotions in response of love, sympathy or tenderness towards somebody or in reaction to hatred, intense dislike, anger or hostility towards an unwanted person were very effectively portrayed in paintings by artist Usman Khalid in an exhibition titled "Stranger in the Night" at Sanat Gallery, Karachi.
Usman discussed the expressiveness of people through their body movements. People got affected by other people's gestures facial expressions and body actions. The human's use their body language more often to communicate with each other and send messages; tell stories, share information and present meaningful details through subtle gestures.
A human form has been for centuries and still remains a mystery for artists around the globe. Artists wanted to unravel mysteries of the human psyche related to its body gestures. These gestures are codes that represent certain sentimental messages and Usman tried to decode these messages by means of figurative paintings of women where white background play a dominant role as it symbolises stillness and dull atmosphere. The figures seemed to be alone without any interaction with their environment which is a bit disturbing for a viewer. Because how come someone talks with the body language when there is no one to see or react to the message. The paintings were lacking the mode of a place or may be artist wanted the viewers to fill the space with their imagination and get involved with the painting on some level.
The faceless women figures again suggested that the viewers tried their inventive powers to understand the painting, which is in a way creative for the viewers and the artist as well. The titles of the paintings guide the viewers to fill in the blanks accordingly.
In some paintings the shadows of the body were present to accompany the figures. These figureless shadows revealed another side of a person while the body gestures were different the shadows told another story.
Copyright Business Recorder, 2017