2018 all that is, is held Canvas Gallery, Karachi
This body of work continues my study into the nature of matter and enquiry into what comprises space. Utilizing scientific imaging I take a formal approach to intuit the meaning behind the apparent. The notion finds resonance that micro-macro and internal-external realities represent a similitude.
Contemplating both the animate and inanimate, and referencing from cell behavior, the colonies therein creating patterns, to the structure of air and atmospheric spheres, the reductive body appears as deposits of matter, scattered in the universe ... alive in stillness, held by space.
Being complete in receptiveness, comes light, heat, comes movement.
Space without matter is not empty. Subtle encompasses dense, less is more. Being and not being float in a pool of aliveness. All that is, is held.
Ayessha Quraishi | 2018
2018.8. Torso 1, silver paper strips, 81 x 58 cm, 2018
2018.9. Torso 2, CT scan strips, 81 x 58 cm, 2018
2018.10. Muscle, CT scan strips, 81 x 58 cm, 2018
2018.6, Diptych, Bodies in motion.1, Pen and ink on distressed paper, 56 x 86 cm, 2018
2018.7, Diptych, Bodies in motion. 2, Oxidized aluminum foil, punched paper, 56 x 86 cm, 2018
2018.13, Notes 1, CT Scan strips, 48 x 61 cm, 2018
2018.14, Notes 2, CT Scan strips, 48 x 61 cm, 2018
Notes on CT scan 1 & 2 . 2018
2018.22, Solid yet fluid, Wood, 46 x 127 cm each, 2018
2018.22, Solid yet fluid, Wood, 46 x 127 cm each, 2018
Slide 1 . Left: All that is, is held. Oxidized aluminum paper, X-ray strips, 81x58 cm, 2018 . Centre: Cell, Oxidized aluminum paper, X-ray strip, 81x58 cm, 2018. Right: Bodies in motion. 1, Pen and ink on paper, 56x86 cm, 2018
Slide 2. Left: Diptych, Bodies in motion. 1, Pen and ink on paper, 56x86 cm, 2018 . Right: Diptych, Bodies in motion. 2, Oxidized aluminum foil, oil on paper, 56x86 cm, 2018
Slide 3. Left: Hand 1 & 2, Oxidized X-ray, paper stickers, 39x28 cm each, 2018. Centre: Foot, Oil on X-ray and paper, 35x53 cm, 2018. Right: Black square, X-ray, photo album page, oil on paper, 48x33 cm, 2018
Slide 4. Top Centre: Notes on CT scan 1, CT scan strips, 61x48 cm, 2018. Bottom Centre: Notes on CT scan 2, CT scan strips and oil on paper, 61x48 cm, 2018
Slide 5 . Left: Torso 1. Silver paper strips, 81 x 58 cm, 2018. Centre: Torso 2, CT scan strips, 81 x 58 cm, 2018. Right: Muscle, CT scan strips, 81 x 58 cm, 2018
recorded time 4 person show | Koel Gallery Curated by Sadia Salim
Brain O'Doherty compares a gallery space with a Palaeolithic painted cave, an Egyptian tomb and a medieval church - spaces that are sealed off from the outside world, "untouched by time and its vicissitudes". 'Recorded Time' is an artistic project that sets off to challenge some of these notions as it functions as an open studio and a gallery space. It considers the notion of site specificity, the gallery as a contested space, and of looking out from inside this space and vice versa.
Four artists with disparate practices are part of this project. Ayessha Quraishi is a seasoned artist whose practice hinges on being felt or sensed as she negotiates physical and abstract spaces. Sara Pagganwala's recent works are performance based where her body plays a pivotal role in creation and participation. Yasser Vayani works with the everyday objects to create installations with multiples that seek to subvert commercialization in art. Sarah Hashmi collects data in the form of objects and oral histories from those who experienced partition of the subcontinent and subsequent migration to Pakistan.
Beginning on December 13, 2016, at Koel Gallery, Recorded Time aims to give artists a space to investigate their practices as they dialogue with each other and those passing by in a communal and interactive set up.
2017.4, Oil on paper, 152 x 183 cm, 2017
Ayessha Quraishi has an established art practice spanning almost three decades. Her home studio is a meditative place where she spends long hours well into the solitude of the night with her work. As she goes off to sleep her paintings are the last things she sees and the first as she wakes up. Observing Ayessha work (in the gallery space) is itself a meditative process as the artist, her space and paintings closely interact with each other. The precision with which she prepares her surfaces and interrupts that precision when paint touches the surface, the movement of her hands and the act of creating repetitive strokes, expound the underlying rhythm. And it is the rhythm of her process that takes the lead as paintings start to emerge. She connects her creative process to a number of other human processes such as creating music or offering prayer, and equates the recorded time to various kinds of recordings - of sound, of the movement of the earth and of recording a mark.
A moment is created with the confluence of senses, the light filtering through the space, the sound of a conversation, the odours and flavours - the kind of energy the artist taps into that allows the paintings to materialize. In the current body of work, her paintings are layered by accumulation and erasure of paint - the repetitive processes that are filtered through her senses. Ayessha's work is silent and facilitates the viewers to hear the sounds captured from certain moments in time and space.
2017.13 A, Diptych, Oil on paper, 56 x 112 cm, 2017
2017.13 B, Diptych, Oil on paper, 56 x 112 cm, 2017
2017.13, Diptych, Oil on paper, 112 x 56 cm, 2017
2017.14, Oil on paper, 109 x 61 cm, 2017
2017.11, Oil on paper, 109 x 61 cm, 2017
2017.6, Oil on paper, 37 x 55 cm, 2017
2017.7, Oil on paper, 37 x 55 cm, 2017
2017.6 & 2017.7, Oil on paper, 2017
Slide 1. 2017.4, Oil on paper, 152 x 152 cm, 2017.
Slide 2. Left: 2017.14, Oil on paper, 109 x 61 cm, 2017. Right Top: 2017.7, Oil on paper, 55 x 37 cm, 2017. Bottom Right: 2017.6, Oil on paper, 55 x 37 cm, 2017.
Slide 3. Left: 2017.12, Oil on paper, 109 x 61 cm, 2017. Centre: 2017.8, Oil on paper, 55 x 40 cm, 2017. Right: 2017.9, Oil on paper, 55 x 40 cm, 2017.
Slide 4 & 5 Work in process during residency at Koel Gallery.
open presence Koel Gallery, Karachi
Open presence is an acknowledgment of the space of consciousness, an intermediate space between senses and states. A place one may come to observation without preferences. A holding place between the ordinary and sublime at once. The skin, senses and states are porous through which one may sieve into open presence, where everything touches everything.
All major mystical traditions have recognized that there is a paradox at the heart of the journey of return to Origin. …Put simply, this is that we are already what we seek, and that what we are looking for on the Path with such an intensity of striving and passion and discipline is already within and around us at all moments. The journey and all its different ordeals are all emanations of the One Spirit that is manifesting everything in all dimensions; every rung of the ladder we climb toward final awareness is made of the divine stuff of awareness itself; Divine Consciousness is at once creating and manifesting all things and acting in and as all things in various states of self-disguise throughout all the different levels and dimensions of the universe.
Andrew Harvey “It is only when we realize that life is taking us nowhere that it begins to have meaning.” P.D. Ouspensky
2016.1, A word of love in the form of burning awareness, i offer, Oil on paper, 112 x 74 cm, 2016
2016.2, Open presence, where everything touches everything, Oil on paper, 114 x 63 cm, 2016
2016.3, Elements at the heart of time that forms cannot reach, Oil on paper, 158 x 74 cm, 2016
2015.1, In the absolute presence of a distant light. 1, Oil on paper, 93 x 63 cm, 2015
2015.2, In the absolute presence of a distant light. 2, Oil on paper, 93 x 63 cm, 2015
2016.11, The form of the last shadow, Wood, 122 x 20 x 20 cm, 2016
2016.17, Skin rituals over a flesh weakness, Oil on timber, 92 x 92 cm, 2016
2016.18, And of skies it is said, there are seven, Oil on timber, 92 x 92 cm, 2016
2016.6, Looking through the ancient sepia into future fluorescence. 2, Parchment on digital print, 30 x 20 cm, 2016
2016.5, Looking through the ancient sepia into future fluorescence. 1, Parchment on digital print, 30 x 20 cm, 2016
2016.4, Dawning into coherence, Wood, 102 x 20 x 20 cm, 2016
2016.13, Touching blind, inside out. 2, Pigment and oil on paper, 63 x 46 cm, 2016
2016.12, Touching blind, inside out. 1, Pigment and oil on paper, 63 x 46 cm, 2016
2016.14, Touching blind, inside out. 3, Pigment and oil on paper, 63 x 46 cm, 2016
intimacy | towards a more quiet region of feeling
5 Person Show | Koel Gallery Curated by Maha Malik
Ayessha Quraishi has used abstract method across the body of her work. Her practice may be understood in terms of a formal, contemplative art aesthetic. Quraishi's works on paper are non-discursive in the first instance, and they suggest the meditative, as subject matter. The artist mediates with her hands directly. Moving oils on paper, she seems to render the very experience of objectless states. ‘You create an armature for silence, a holding place for emptiness to be.’ Quraishi seems to instill in her works a rich sense of stillness, a way of being in the depths where there appears no thing, and not void, but a place of living and expressive matter, light. Her compositions use the formal apparatus of color, line, and texture, rhythmically finessed to the point paint yields its own luster. It illuminates the environment at hand.
The power of such privation may be sourced in a series of small diaries, art journals covered in dull gold. The artist has maintained these journals as reference for over two decades. They carry the same gestural activity as her larger works on paper and on timber, except for their slight format. Each book opens to jeweled color and to graphite markings in the manner of a naïve art. For her current works, the artist has photographed selected pages from her diaries, digitally reworking them for print. These are then scaled and manually addressed with oils, as per her practice. The contemporary distinction between digital image and painting, with all its biases in tow, becomes radically blurred in the work. In how many ways may one source yield itself? The question is raised here as both creative challenge and as ethical value. Quraishi explores the relationship between singular utterance and a proliferation of meaning in this particular suit of images. And, as per her prior thematics, the exhaustive technique suggests a particular kind of personal aesthetics. Emptying out, as the work of praise in art. Maha Malik
2012 letters from an underground vein read Koel Gallery | 2012
2012.1, Oil on paper, 56 x 56 cm, 2012
2012.7, Oil on timber, 91 x 91 cm, 2012
2012.8, Oil on timber, 91 x 91 cm, 2012
2012.10, Oil on timber, 91 x 91 cm, 2012
2012 . 27, Oil on paper, 100 x 108 cm, 2012
2012.11, Oil on paper, 56 x 56 cm, 2012
2012.12, Oil on paper, 56 x 56 cm, 2012
Oil on paper, 56 x 56 cm, 2012
2012.6, Oil on paper, 116 x 289 cm, 2012
2012.37, Oil on paper, 147 x 99 cm, 2012
Scroll| Performance A performance piece by artist Ayessha Quraishi from her show "Letters From An Underground Vein Read". Here the artist rolls a 98' x 42” scroll towards herself, revealing the quote “One does not become enlightened by imagining figures of light, but by making the darkness conscious.” (Carl Jung) printed beneath it. It’s a 10 minute performance, in dead silence, except for the sound of the scroll moving across its base; the sound of friction. What transpires is a meditative, mesmerizing set of motions.
The work is oil on paper, primarily applied by the artist’s hands. It was completed in October 2012.