Artist-freedom fighter Shah Mainul Islam has recreated the days of liberation war in his drawing-based artworks now on display at a solo show underway at La Galerie of Alliance Francaise de Dhaka.
The exhibition titled ‘Remembrance ‘71’ displays 33 artworks, done in pen and ink on paper, which depicts stories of pain and sufferings, torture and distress, resolution and victory and others.
In some of his works, Mainul has also depicted the mass movement of 1969 and murder of the founding president of the country Sheikh Mujibur Rahman on August 15 in 1975.
‘I always treasured the memories of the turbulent days of the Independence war of 1971. As a result almost all these pictures of mine are painted about those times of war. If these works remind you of those struggling days of bloodshed. I will consider my effort successful,’ reads the brochure of the show.
Speaker of the parliament Dr Shirin Sharmin Choudhury inaugurated the exhibition on March 2. Eminent artist Chandra Shekhar Dey and art-critic Mainuddin Khaled were also present at the inauguration programme.
The majority of the displayed works depict historic events that happened between March and December in 1971. The historic March 7 speech by founding president of the country Sheikh Mujibur Rahman at the then Race Course Field, killings of civilians by the Pakistani occupation army on March 25, mass graves and people fighting against the Pakistani occupation army have been depicted by the artist.
Mainul has combined figurative and impressionistic styles to present his themes.
The work titled ‘The Everlasting Command’ depicts the historic March 7 speech by Sheikh Mujibur Rahman.
In the three drawings under a series titled ‘Killing Field’ the artist has portrayed the ghastly view of mass graves where the Pakistani occupation army killed Banglaees indiscriminately. The drawing shows corpses of men, women and children lying everywhere.
Mainul has not only depicted the horrors that befell the Bangalees in 1971 but he also portrayed how Bangalees fought back and won victory. In the drawings like Ek Nadi Periye, Journey to Victory and few others, the artist has shown people uniting and fighting the Pakistani occupation army.
The exhibition will remain open till March 14.
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