An extravaganza of diverse arts in Bangladesh

DHAKA (The Daily Star/ANN) - Since 1975, the 23rd National Art Exhibition has brought about a festive mood in the local art circuit. 

The 23rd National Art Exhibition has brought about a festive mood in the local art circuit. This important exhibition is organised biennially by the Department of Fine Arts, Bangladesh Shilpakala Academy. Initiated in 1975, the exhibition has, so far, earned recognition from art-lovers across the whole nation as a celebration of modern artworks by artists from all over Bangladesh. This year’s exhibition is featuring a display of 322 artworks by 310 artists. The participants have expressed their artistic feelings and thoughts through watercolour, oil, mixed media and acrylic paintings, sculptures, prints, crafts, ceramics, installations, videos and performing arts.

The primary selection committee comprised of renowned artists -- Mostafizul Haque, Mohammad Iqbal, Anisuzzaman Anis, Sheikh Sadi Bhuiyan and Nasreen Begum. The jury committee for selecting the best artworks for awards included renowned artists -- Abdus Shakoor Shah, Mohammad Eunus, Ranjit Das, Farida Zaman and architect Shamsul Wares.

The objective of this exhibition is to bring together artists belonging to different age groups, working in different mediums and techniques. The event has also become a platform encouraging exchange of ideas between artists, critics and art enthusiasts.

The artworks at the exhibition are expected to possess distinctively local characteristics in terms of forms, subjects and aesthetics. Artists’ mode of expressions are varied -- realistic, semi-realistic, pure-abstraction, semi-abstraction, abstract expressionism, expressionism, impressionism and neo-expressionism.

Artist Kamruzzaman won prestigious Bangladesh Shilpakala Academy Award for his work titled ‘Global Warming-2’ that depicts the perilous effects emanating from climate change. The artwork shows a bird flying in one direction while another bird is sitting on a tree stump in a desolate place, where there were many trees at one point, but now nothing but tiles. In the middle of the frame there is a structure made out of wood and a huge bowl-like form made out of twigs, suitable for making bird’s nests.

Bangladeshi Shilpakala Academy Honourable Mention Awards were given to four artists. Tanvir Mahmud received media best award in sculpture for his work ‘Pronidhan-2’, Ruhul Karim Rumee received media best award in printmaking for his art which features a series of dehumanised portraits under the title ‘Portraits of Ambiguity’. Sahid Kazi received new media best award for his installation ‘Golden Fiber’ while Rafat Ahmed Badhon won the media best award in painting for his watercolour titled ‘Relation-4’.

Uttam Kumer Talukder received the Bengal Foundation Award for his artwork titled ‘Story of Life-1’, whereas Faria Khanum Tuly received the Kazi Anowar Hossain Award for her artwork ‘Preetibimba-4’ and Sumon Wahed won the Dipa Haque Award for his work ‘The Map’.

The exhibition, opening daily from 11 pm to 8 pm, and from 3 pm to 8 pm on Fridays, will continue till July 21.

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