‘WE ARE ALIGS’ by Funun Arts


(Saju Nair - Dubai) It has almost been 10 months since the Covid-19 virus shook the world's natural order and we all are working towards the elimination of this mighty foe from our homes. The regulations implemented by various countries to curb the further spread of this virus has resulted in the restriction of movement and public activities for the betterment of society but in a way, this regulation has opened up an array of opportunities for several sectors and the most benefitted segment may be the art industry. The United Arab Emirates is a hub for several prominent galleries run by people from diverse backgrounds and nationalities. This great nation is a second home for almost 200 plus nationalities and naturally, this diversity ensures that the events organized in this region celebrate and promote cultural diversity and creativity. Educational programs related to Art, Live art talks, Workshops, Virtual art exhibitions and many more inspiring gatherings dominate the art industry in UAE and provide a huge platform for artists to showcase their artworks for the whole world to see.

Artworks exhibited @'WE ARE ALIGS'

We all know how we have a very special attachment to the institutions that have molded us into the people we are today. Even after decades of passing out of these institutions, revisiting them brings back a flood of emotions and memories. A blissful state of nostalgic happiness and even a sense of melancholy washes over us as we recollect the laughs we shared, the tears we cried and the steps we once walked. Each nook and corner of these institutions hold the memories of hundreds and thousands of students. The canteen was the place one chased their friends for raiding their lunchboxes, the classroom was where we learnt but more importantly, where we formed unbreakable bonds. These were the places, we learnt, we lived and we loved. Most of us still maintain a good contact with our childhood friends, after all, it is with them we spent the best years of our lives with.

Artworks exhibited @'WE ARE ALIGS'

Funun Arts is one of the most popular art galleries in the UAE and they have always been at the top of the chart when it comes to curating events that actually encourage a positive change in the society. Ever since the beginning of Funun Arts to this very day, the curators have been tirelessly working towards breathing life into hundreds of successful gatherings and all with the sole purpose of promoting and supporting artists on a global scale. Their efforts have not gone unnoticed but instead, they have received unimaginable support and appreciation from the global art community. As a result, open call for artists have been attended to with great enthusiasm and this was seen when the great Khan sisters, founders of Funun Arts, organized an event on 18th October 2020 to show their love and support towards the university these two sisters graduated from. 'WE ARE ALIGS' was a befitting title to the event as it clearly communicates the immense love and pride for their university. A group of artists and eminent personalities from different sectors joined the event to collectively reminiscence on their good old university days and share their experiences and memories on a platform curated by Ms. Shiba Khan and Ms. Farah Khan.

Before we proceed with the details of the event, it is a necessity to share some information on the university's rich history. Aligarh Muslim University is a premier central university in Aligarh, India, which was originally established by Sir Syed Ahmad Khan as the Muhammadan Anglo-Oriental College in 1875. Muhammadan Anglo-Oriental College became Aligarh Muslim University in 1920, following the Aligarh Muslim University. The university grew out of the work of Sir Syed Ahmad Khan, the great Muslim reformer and statesman, who in the aftermath of the Indian War of Independence of 1857 felt that it was important for Muslims to gain education and become involved in the public life and government services in India. Raja Jai Kishan helped Sir Syed in establishing the university. Sir Syed took his final breath on March 27, 1898 and was buried in the premises of the university mosque in the Sir Syed Hall, AMU. (Data's courtesy AMU Website)

Artworks exhibited @'WE ARE ALIGS'

With this exhibition, the founders of Funun Arts, Ms. Shiba Khan and Ms. Farah Khan, have taken initiative to bring artists and personalities who had graduated from AMU and are currently working in various sectors. Another factor that is to be noted is that this event is the first art exhibition with artists exclusively from AMU. The art works displayed at this exhibition were wide in variety and styles. Arabic calligraphy was beautifully created using vivid styles by incorporating diversified techniques while landscapes created in vibrant colors induced a sense of serenity in the onlookers, stunning portraitures of known and unknown faces, beautifully captured images and striking abstract creations were the genres of most of the works displayed. The pure talent and skill in these works have surprised the gathering that attended the event through the ZOOM meeting and those who followed the event through social media live streams

Artworks exhibited @'WE ARE ALIGS'

The artists who have surprised the art community at 'We are Aligs' are Adiba Saleem, Afreen Khan, Amreen Khan, Almas Khan, Ayesha Izhar, Azaa Junaid, Hala Masroor, Hiba Mehmood, Humera Naaz, Mohammed Waseem, Mohd. Waseem Akram, Rifa Nasir, Roohy Khan, Sarah Shafiq, Salika Parvez, Sidra Rizvi, Sumaiyah Shafiq, Zainab Chaudhary, Shiba Khan and Farah Khan.

When asked about the idea, the founder of Funun Arts, Shiba Khan, says "This year is the 100-year mark of the ALIGARH MUSLIM UNIVERSITY and we were keen to do something to make it remarkable and show our tribute to this grand institution and as art is the best way to express, we came up with this theme, this particular topic 'WE ARE ALIGS'. I believe till date no such event is organized to bring up the hidden talents from AMU. Again, I was extremely curious about the results on this topic and what I saw was stunning calligraphy in a new and modern way, some oriental paintings and contemporary art at its best with that very special Indian touch. It was fascinating to experience that when we announced this topic, even people who are not associated with AMU started following our promotional videos and we were immensely touched to receive personal messages of appreciation and support. We are satisfied as we know that with this event we have successfully managed to spread the beauty of AMU on an international platform."

The creative head of Funun Arts, Farah Khan says, "This concept of paying tribute to AMU through an art event was quite a challenging task, but we felt that it was something that was needed to done as Funun Arts, by conducting events over the years, has established a very prominent level in the art fraternity and by the grace of god, we are fortunate to have a huge fan following base. To express our love towards AMU, we felt that the best way to do this was to spread the quality and values that AMU is known for on an international platform and that's when we got the idea of the title 'WE ARE ALIGS'. We were really surprised by the way Aligarians responded to our open call and we were truly amazed to see all the stunning artworks. Each of the artworks were unique and they were created in various mediums. We are thankful to all 20 artists who came forward to join hands with Funun for this event and we are certain that this event has touched many hearts including our own."

'WE ARE ALIGS' was inaugurated on a ZOOM platform in the presence of the honorary guests of honor and special guests from different walks of life along with participating artists.

Mr. Firoz Khan - a multitalented personality and a well-known name in the field of Art and Drama graced the occasion and says "I am glad that Funun arts took this initiative which was never been taken before. This event has provided these artists an international platform."

Ms. Tarannum - Registrar of GEMS Education, UAE said "I am experiencing a very unique and wonderful event. I have been part of many events which were organized for AMU, but this is very special as we can see the work of such polished artists."

Special guests attended the exhibition

First row from right -Mr. Ahmed Rukni Al Awadhi, Mr. Peter Gressmann, Mr. Anjini Prakash Laitu, Second row from right -Dr. Romit Purohit, Ms. Alessandra Giorda and Mr. Saju Nair

IlTelevisionario2 is proud to be associated with Funun Arts as their international media support and we congratulate the curators Ms. Shiba Khan and Ms. Farah Khan and all participants for hosting such a great show through which they express their love and solidarity to the university they hold dear.

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