A 13-day long an international Islamabad Art Festival (IAF-19) is kicked off on Monday at the Pakistan National Council of the Arts (PNCA).
A grand opening of the event showed dance performances of Indonesian, Chinese and Pakistani dancers. Art exhibitions were inaugurated by the artists coming from across the globe as well as Pakistan.
The opening was a tribute to Jamil Naqsh at the same time acknowledging his contribution and meritorious services in the field of visual art.
IAF-19 will continue for 13 days, before an elaborate closing ceremony on November 30, 2019.
The thematic focus of IAF-19 is a “Dialogue between Tradition and Modernity”.
PNCA Auditorium was packed to its capacity. People from all walks of life including artists of Pakistan, USA, Indonesia, China, Switzerland, Austria, Iran, France and Spain attended the show. The guest artists were warmly welcomed by the audience when called on stage.
The festival was being organized by a consortium of public and private educational institutions, art galleries and artist associations from across Pakistan, generous support from the corporate sector and in collaboration with foreign embassies whose senior representatives have also graced today’s curtain raiser.
IAF-19 is led by President and Chief Curator Jamal Shah, who worked in close collaboration with curators and artists from across Pakistan and abroad to bring together a vibrant show of visual and performing arts on a scale never before seen in Islamabad.
IAF-19 is a collaborative project and will be hosted in several locations in Islamabad and Rawalpindi, including museums, art galleries, educational institutes and public parks. The festival is expected to engage an audience of at least 500,000 individuals from diverse backgrounds and ages. The participants of the festival will include over 200 individuals from 34 countries, and approximately 400 participants from across Pakistan.
It is for the first time that expression of almost all forms of art will be showcased together. Painting, sculpture, drawing, printmaking, textile design, dance, music, film, puppet shows, theatre, fashion design and performing arts from across the world will be available to satisfy the cultural aesthetic people in general. Simultaneously, Literature from different Lands is also being focused.
An International Literary Conference is also being held in the ambit of the Festival. Discussant will comprise of prominent writers and poets from about 20 Asian African countries. They will assemble under the banner of a three day “International Writers Conference-Islamabad 2019. Their deliberations and poetry recital sessions will engage literature and academia circles to promote understanding of the cultures and mores of people from different parts of the world. All these art forms are being presented in venues open and accessible to the public.
At IAF-19, local artists will create, exhibit and perform right alongside their foreign counterparts, and catapult Pakistani art to new heights worldwide. Emerging artists will have an opportunity to interact with established and highly-respected artists and exhibit their work together on this collaborative platform. The aim of the festival is to celebrate diversity and creativity in all forms of visual and performing arts. The spirit of creativity brings people together and strengthens society as a whole.
Collaborating with international artists will foster stronger relationships through cultural dialogue and exchange of ideas, and elevate Pakistani art and culture on a global level.
The academic component of IAF-19, developed in partnership with leading educational institutes of Pakistan, will include conferences, lectures and panel discussions; book launches; and interactive workshops for children and adults. There will also be a video contest encouraging students to explore the culture and heritage of their part of Pakistan.
An art festival of this scale will have a far-reaching socioeconomic and cultural impact. It will broaden public access to creative and performing arts, and encourage people to explore their own creativity through workshops and interactive public art programs. It will also provide a shared platform for artists, performers, and scholars to develop a framework to further art education in Pakistan.