ISLAMABAD, Pakistan: A one-day painting exhibition titled ‘Uks-e-Aman’ was organised by PeaceFlix in collaboration with the Pakistan National Council of the Arts (PNCA) and the Women Journalist Association of Pakistan on Thursday.
Uks-e-Aman is a peace-building activity organised by peace-builder Asma Bashir Kundi as a member of the PeaceFlix initiative by Global Neighborhood for Media Innovation (GNMI).
The programme is designed to promote peace, inclusivity and social cohesion in local capacities. The programme’s core objective was to create discourse around women’s role in peace-building in Pakistan and around the globe.
In the first phase of the project, female journalists from across Pakistan, who have cover war, conflict and violence in the field of journalism, shared stories they covered with art students.
Art students were selected from various art institutions including the Fatima Jinnah University Rawalpindi, the Quaid-e-Azam University Islamabad and Islamabad Model College for Girls Korang Town. The brilliant students painted the shared stories on canvas.
As many as 17 art students participated in the project activity and produced 16 paintings and a 3-D project to represent the stories highlighting the need and ways for peace in society.
The PNCA Director General Ayoub Jamali said that the basis of peace was trust. “The foundation of trust is transparency, and the base of transparency is shared inner experience. Art is a powerful tool for expressing inner expertise to build trust and peace,” he said.
Ayoub Jamali added that the PNCA has supported promoting exhibitions and the best modern and contemporary art nationally and internationally. The PNCA was set up to spearhead the development of skills in Pakistan. The council aims to build an environment conducive to the flourishing of the arts, where the arts are accessible to everyone and artists and art groups have the commitment, support and resources to excel at home and on the world stage.
A painting by Roshan Bakht titled ‘Carving Fate’ drew visitors’ attention. The painting represented a story of a street boy named Noman Khan from Peshawar who worked as a servant while he joined free art academy and successfully made his art career. Khan changed his fate through hard work and exhibited his paintings at 16.
The story was done by a woman journalist from Peshawar Fatima Nazish. Bakht said, “Through this opportunity, I learned a lot about painting techniques. As an artist, I believe my primary duty is to promote peace through my artwork. The storyline was fascinating as it depicts the harsh reality of struggling young artists. Still, it ends on a beautiful, successful path.”
Sadaf Hammad, the Assistant Professor at the Islamabad Model College for Girls Korang Town, said, “This exhibition is first of its kind. The idea is unique, and it engages students to create interesting artwork based on the case studies by women journalists. The stories are the outcome of their commitment to their field. The diverse experience shared by different journalists seems amazing as artworks.”
Asma Bashir Kundi, the workshop organiser on behalf of Peace Flix, thanked the participants and said that all the students worked with great passion, and the outcome was great.
The founder of the Women Journalists Association of Pakistan, Fauzia Kalsoom Rana, said that the idea by peace-builder by Asma Kundi to present the stories of women journalists on canvas with vibrant colours was a unique t idea, and it was not an easy goal to implement. The way art students have adapted the stories of women journalists into art is unimaginable, she said.
“On behalf of the Women Journalists Association of Pakistan, we are grateful to the PNCA, the tireless work of peace leaders, and the continuous support of Team GNMI which made ‘Uks-e-Aman’ possible today.