Performance Artiste from 2016 | Sunday Observer

Performance Artiste from 2016

The Billari Art Gallery located at Park Road, Colombo 5 was officially opened to the public last week. It is indeed a breath of fresh air to the Colombo art and social scene. The Gallery is beautiful and has ample space to display and exhibit paintings. A joint exhibition of artwork of world renowned Pakistani artist and social worker Jimmy Engineer and his upcoming Sri Lankan contemporary art protégé Mueen Saheed have got underway at the Gallery. Engineer and art narrative expressionist Saheed have jointly organised the art exhibition, scheduled to continue for about a fortnight.

Artist Mueen Saheed, founder of the Billari Gallery, is a professional jeweller turned artist mainly due to his deep passion for art and in a short period has painted over 500 paintings. His recent work on display at the Billari Art Gallery includes paintings on gender violence and saving the oceans. If you have been to Movenpick, it is very likely that you have seen his work. Saheed paints in the abstract and his art is positively stunning. Billari is the home to many things related to Saheed. It not only contains over 500 pieces by him, but is also the artist’s work space.

As you enter the Gallery, there is an array of paintings, sculptures, random pieces of furniture, used car parts, antique doors, windows and canvases, drowning in colour, all brought back to life. While interacting with the artists, art lovers and people from other walks of life at the inaugural ceremony, Engineer spoke about his creative work, life and relationship with Sri Lanka where he is paying yet another goodwill visit. He availed the opportunity to project and highlight a soft, positive, progressive and forward looking image of Pakistan and its people emphasizing that Pakistan is a great country with great people, great culture and great artists. Engineer’s paintings are in private collections in almost every part of the world. As a matter of record, ever since he turned into a professional artist in1976, Jimmy Engineer has created more than 3,000 paintings, 1,000 calligraphies and 1,500 drawings. About 700,000 prints of his paintings are in private collections in more than 60 countries around the globe.

He has held more than 80 art exhibitions in Pakistan and many other countries, led over 100 walks for noble causes and organised more than 140 fun, food and awareness programs for the Special Children including the handicapped and mentally retarded, orphans, deaf and blind children in Sri Lanka and in some parts of the world. A painting of International Architectural Compositions by Jimmy Engineer is already on permanent display at the prestigious National Art Museum in Beijing, China, since March 2018.

His two pencil drawings have also been recently selected to be put on permanent display at the Royal Ontario Museum of Canada in Ontario. Engineer has thus become the first-ever Pakistani artist whose creative artwork is on permanent display in two museums.

He is happy, having earned this singular honour and distinction for his motherland Pakistan. Billari is a wonderful place to either buy or view art. It is located at 165 / 11, Park Road Colombo 5. The Gallery is open from Monday to Sunday from 10 am to 6 pm