KARACHI: Oxfam in Pakistan launched the Free from Fear Digital Illustration Exhibition at Alliance Française de Karachi on Monday evening. The artwork featured in the exhibition imagines a world where women and girls live free from the fear of harassment and violence. The digitally illustrated posters were submitted as part of a nationwide competition launched in November during 16 Days of Activism. This is the second in a series of exhibitions arranged by Oxfam, the first having been launched earlier this year in March in Islamabad.
Visual Arts students from across Pakistan were invited to participate in the competition and Oxfam received nearly one hundred entries of which 21 were shortlisted for display. The shortlisted entries have been judged by a high-profile panel of Pakistan’s first female cartoonist Nigar Nazar, digital artist Shehzil Malik and award-winning documentary filmmaker Samar Minallah.
The exhibition was opened by Chief Guest Mahtab Akbar Rashdi who called out to the audience to not only admire the artworks but to reflect on the causes they represent too. “You have to change the customs and free girls from the shackles inhibiting their freedom”.
Speaking at the opening, Australian High Commission Third Secretary Jeeven Nadanakumar said that the empowerment of women should not merely be a wish but the key agenda moving forward. Making public spaces safe for women will play a crucial role in advancing women and girls social and economic empowerment.
Oxfam in Pakistan Country Director Mohammed Qazilbash appreciated the students for their creativity, skill and conceptualisation. He said “We hope that being free from fear becomes a reality for every woman and child in Pakistan”.
Students who won prizes included Eshal J Malik from Indus Valley School of Art and Architecture (IVSAA), Areeba Haseeb from University of Karachi, Aisha Khawar from National College of Arts (NCA) Rawalpindi, Ameenah Mansoor K. from Indus Valley School of Art and Architecture, Maha Faisal Sheikh from Indus Valley School of Art and Architecture and Aasma Qureshi from Mehran University of Engineering and Technology, Jamshoro.
The Free from Fear Digital Illustration exhibition will continue at Alliance Française de Karachi until 22nd June 2019. News Desk