Stories about artists

Tim Burton might have missed the mark with Big Eyes

It’s the 1960s and no one wants to buy ‘lady art’, not least from a withering divorcee and single mother, or so starts Tim Burton’s latest offering, Big Eyes. Photo: Facebook page Based on a true story, the film centres around artist Margaret Keane (Amy Adams) and her new realtor husband Walter Keane (Christoph Waltz) who, with his knack for selling and compulsion for artistic fame, ends up taking credit for her paintings and successfully making them into a commercial art sensation. It is only ten years down the line, once Margaret takes her daughter and leaves Walter, ...

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Bhand-e-Pather, a fading art in Kashmir

Bhand e Pather, part of Kashmiri folk theatre, is a satirical and realistic drama, one which incorporates mythological legends and contemporary social satire; a traditional mixture of art. Mostly performed in the countryside, it is used to entertain the public, especially on different ceremonies. The artists have a separate dress code, in accordance with the theme, for the various plays performed. These plays are always performed in an open ground. The characters in the Bhand e Pather are well versed, and because the performances are based on social issues, they are seen criticising the rulers and stressing upon the betterment of society. In its early ...

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Coke Studio 7 comes with strings attached

What an opening! The much-awaited Coke Studio season seven begins with the hope of fresh music, sounds, return-to-roots and much more. Strings have teamed up to become the sound producers of a huge franchise even though they have no prior music production experience. It was but expected that, apart from picking all the right people, their overall presentation would be a ‘celebration of strings’, given Bilal Maqsood’s love for the guitar. Episode one fared well and stumbled a little as well, but gave much to celebrate. Ustad Raees Khan and Abida Perveen: Mein Sufi Hoon Who can go wrong placing these two maestros together? It was a joy to see ...

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A FRESH! prespective at the Amin Gulgee Gallery

This evening I attended the launch of an unusual art exhibition in Karachi at the Amin Gulgee Gallery. It was called ‘Fresh!’ – 64 artists under 30, and showcased the art of yes, you guessed it, 64 young Pakistani artists from all across the country. Source: AminGulgee.com John McCarry, coordinator of the gallery, told me that Amin had attended an exhibition in New York at the New Museum called ‘Younger than Jesus’, which showcased artists all under the age of 34. “Why not do something like that here?” wondered Amin. So he found two co-curators, Raania Azam Khan Durrani, founder of the Commune Artist ...

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I walked in the opposite direction when One Direction won the People’s Choice Awards

The People’s Choice Awards are undoubtedly, one of the most famous American awards shows to date. These awards exhibit what people think of certain actors, bands, artists and the like. Of course, it also exhibits how these people are somewhat challenged when it comes to choosing their favourite actors, bands, artists etcetera. Not that they should be judged or criticised for their weakness since they are, after all, called ‘People’s Choice Awards’ and not ‘My-Opinion-is-Obviously-Better-Than-Yours’ awards. But here in this article, I am free to give my personal opinion which is not all that eyebrow-raising since as I am one of the ...

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They call her Berlin

Berlin is like that friend, who as soon as you meet, shares her deepest, darkest secrets without any shame. She’s been betrayed more harshly than Jesus, has seen more blood than a haematologist and has had her fair share of wars waged on her soil. Anyone in her position would just clam up and hide their scars; not wear them on their sleeves all the time. Yet, Berlin showcases her biggest mistakes for the entire world. Just when you think that a broken person like her has probably forgotten how to really live – she takes you to a party so ...

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Video Blog: Singing for peace

French author George Sand wrote in a letter to her friend in 1872: “Art for art’s sake is an empty phrase. Art for the sake of the true, art for the sake of the good and the beautiful, that is the faith I am searching for…” Mankind’s struggle against ugliness is as ancient as the human existence itself. In these times, as we continuously witness new wars and bloodshed in the name of “civilizational conflicts”, Sand’s statement should be the manifesto of every creative person. Sadly, in our not-so-pure land, commercial artists of every medium continue to produce material which doesn’t ...

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My art is not for you Prime Minister Gilani

My friend stood painting something abstract, holding a cigarette  in a manner that complimented her artistic persona. She probably noticed my sarcastic smile and said, ‘Hey Ammar! I know you criticize abstract art, but you see artists are free souls. We don’t believe in any rules, regulations and boundaries. We choose to be apolitical and are not disciplined folks at all. Discipline and art do not go along.” I remained silent looking at something black lying next to her bag. She continued, “What are you looking at? The graduation gown? That’s for the convocation dress rehearsal. Everything has to be ...

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Piracy: What stands between Pakistani music, and greatness

Pakistani music is recognised around the world for its distinct and creative style. The diversities in Pakistani music are there for everyone to hear, with artists coming up with everything from hip hop and rock, all the way to classical eastern music, with some musicians even putting them together. The fact that we don’t have a prestigious film industry helps rather than hurts. Since artists don’t look towards movies to be their main form of advertisement or the medium for people to be exposed to their music, they don’t need to make specific types of tracks to please producers and ...

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