As I viewed the intensively engaging paintings collection of Tasneem Iqbal which showcased at the JI Gallery in 3rd street , Bath Island, Karachi, Pakistan, I had ventured a very pleasant journey down memory lane. My memory goes down to PECHS school for girls in nursery area of Karachi. Three sisters studied there and the youngest was Tasneem. Tasneem was trained in potrait at Karachi initially and then took up painting as a full time vocation.She has made several paintings over the last many years and her paintings are very favorite in buyers circles.
This body of work reflects Tasneem's mastery over figurative expression The women and girls potray a poignant elegance. The beauty is reflected as if a bejewelled piece through the face, eyes and lips.
Sometimes if very bright and deep colours like reds and blues, give a loudness to a painting, that may deter the viewer from studying the detail of expression. Not so with Tasneem Iqbal.Her use of bright colours like reds, blues and greens blend easily with the visual experience.Her women are sometimes potrayed alone, always looking at something as if potraying a life experience. A nude back, looking out at a tree from a window is reminiscent of the frequent experiences we have in a routine daily life and the wide canvas of memories on our Life' tree. I found this painting an encompassing complete visual delight. The window divides the space between the nude in the painting and also the real viewer. Yet the experience is merged. The tree out in the courtyard though vague and in a dim light , is present in all it's existential glory. It is both an object of attention , yet a landscape presence. A Pittori painting also reflects the same visuals but I find Tasneem's painting much more exciting and poignant.
The women in Tasneem's paintings emerge as distinct individuals whether alone or in groups. The figure is clear , the outline prominent , yet does not submerge the body content. Expression clearly has a Pakistani, or Indian-Pakistani image. This is both modern and contemporary.Her potraiture work clearly shows her training in figurative expression.
Her painting of the profiles as in three girls painting shows her mastery over execution of strokes, as a clear visual of Self Potrait appears in three phases of life.
Tasneem's Calligraphic paintings also show her deep insight into this form of painting expression so popular in Muslim countries.