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A mixed bouquet of flowers

IT'S A family affair. When her brother-in-law invited Farida Naaz to put up a few of her pictures at his new Airport Hotel, he didn't know that he was igniting a passion. It took just a handful of paintings on the wall for the die to be cast. Shy and unassuming, Naaz emerged from the shadows with fire in her belly.

After sixteen long years the easel was back in place, the brushes and paints in tow. Back in the studio, she painted furiously, buffering a depleted collection in order to showcase it for a good cause.

With 45 paintings in stock and few ceramics and glass works thrown in, Naaz arrived at Hotel Abad Plaza on October 12th with a good feeling. All the profits from the sale of her pictures would go for the upkeep of the special children at Raksha. While the choice of painting surfaces is unlimited, the themes aren't. Ubiquitous flowers and European landscapes dominate her repertoire, criss-crossing the canvases, platters, plaques and tiles.

Flowers are her forte and roses closest to her heart. She doesn't care a whit if most of her paintings are copies of pictures and cards, but adds when it comes to roses, she doesn't even need to look at one, as the drawing comes so naturally.

Her choice of colours is pastel, hovering over mint greens and yellows with a light tone.

So once in a way, when a battered boat moored to a riverbank catches the eye, the viewer stops to stare.

The landscape is idyllic, the treatment impressionistic; the bold strokes a testimony to her confidence. Even as she is naturally inclined to watercolours, Naaz makes efforts to experiment with oils and acrylics in a way to give variety to her palette and brushwork.

Meanwhile, her exhibit also includes painted pots and ceramic miniature flowers. There's a collection of urns, which have been painted over in earth colours. Flowers, (read roses) have been embossed over them. She has experimented the same on plaques. A newcomer to exhibitions, Naaz has priced her art works carefully. The display is a mixed bag. Some works show a burgeoning talent, waiting to be tapped. Others slip into mediocrity. No doubt the attempt to come out of her sabbatical is bold, and Naaz is raring to go.

Says she, "If I get a good response, I will enroll into an art class to get some formal training." A rudimentary course would go a long way in restoring faith in her abilities. As for now, the artist is well ensconced in her studio. The exhibition was open on October 12 and 13.

S.K

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