Shams Ul Arfeen Hashmi

Editor's note

Shams Ul Arfeen Hashmi is a Lahore based visual artist. In 2012 he graduated from Beaconhouse Sadiqabad Campus and has been shortlisted for their Distinguished Alumni Award 2022. Moreover, he graduated from National College of Arts in 2019, majoring in painting and is also active as an actor & singer. The artist’s paintings are largely autobiographical - an acute observation of the constant transformation of life and its surroundings. Breaking the mould of traditional landscape painting, he plays with composition by taking a fragment of a panorama and magnifying it, realizing it on a large scale canvas. Exploring his native grassland landscape, the artist immerses himself in his surroundings, thus investigating the process of going beyond himself to reach a certain free and meditative state.Navigating a balance between realism and abstraction, Arfeen uses unconventional techniques such as sanding, splashing, dripping and scrubbing the paint.''I visualise what I want to achieve yet without the knowing how I amgoing to reach my destination. My journey begins with feelings then thoughts, line and colour follow, creating a harmony between textures.''This combination of painterly, conceptual and poetic tools is what shapes his process, while the gradual build up of layers creates a sense of depth that draws the viewer in.''I am interested in what we don’t see when we try to focus on what we do see.''Arfeen’s works have been displayed at E-Exhibitions Ejaz Art Galleries, O art space Lahore and at Canvas gallery Karachi, curated by internationally acclaimed artist Imran Qureshi. The artist currently lives and works in Lahore, Pakistan.