Pakistani Artist Mahwish Chishty Featured in Studio VU Lecture on February 10

mahwish-chishtymq9_5Initially trained as a miniature painter from the National College of Arts, Lahore, Pakistan, Mahwish Chishty has aggressively combined new media and conceptual work with her traditional practice, emerging as a notable conceptual artist.  As part of the Department of Art’s Studio VU Lecture Series, Chishty will talk about her work on Wednesday, February 10, at 7 pm in room 220 of the E. Bronson Ingram Studio Arts Center.

In addition to her lecture, a unique collaborative exhibition, This Is Our War, with Chishty and 200 Maplewood High School students, opens on Saturday, February 13, at the Red Arrow Gallery, 919 Gallatin Avenue #4, in East Nashville, with a reception from 6-9 pm.  On view through March 6, the exhibit focuses on the impact of drones and drone imagery.

Hovering over the clouds above the Pakistan-Afghanistan border, unmanned aerial vehicles are there to target the terrorists.   The Pakistani painter reimagines drones as folk art in her country’s colorful “truck art” tradition.  Chishty presents her series of hauntingly beautiful paintings using silhouettes of drones juxtaposed with vibrant folk art imagery, combining politics and cultures that have shaped her experience.  By camouflaging modern war machines with folk imagery, she is shedding light on the complexity of acculturation, politics and power along with enhancing the dialogue.

Chishty has exhibited her work nationally and internationally at such venues as the University of Technology Gallery, Sydney, Australia; Boghossian Foundation– Villa Empain, Brussels; Utah Museum of Contemporary Art, Salt Lake City; Museum of Contemporary African Diasporan Arts, Brooklyn, NY; Washington Project for the Arts, Washington, DC; The Contemporary Austin (AMOA-Arthouse), Austin, TX, and Fukuoka Shi Asian Art Museum, Japan, University of Michigan, Ann Arbor, MI, and Gandhara Art Gallery, Karachi, Pakistan, among others.

The artist holds an MFA degree in Studio Arts from the  University of Maryland, College Park.  In 2015 she was awarded residencies at the Chicago Cultural Center, Chicago, IL; Yaddo, Saratoga Springs, NY; and Vermont Studio Center, Vermont, NY.  Her paintings are in public and private collections, including the Foreign Office Islamabad, Pakistan and Fukuoka Asian Art Museum, Fukuoka Shi, Japan.

Her lecture is free and open to the public.  The Ingram Studio Arts Center is located at 25th Avenue South and Garland Avenue on the Vanderbilt campus.  On street parking is available along Garland Avenue and in the nearby parking lots.

For more information, please contact the Department of Art at 615-343-7241 or

*MQ-9 Guardian, gouache and tea stain on handmade paper, 2011

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