The printmakers' progress : Kibria Print Fair at DAC
Having established itself as a site for appreciation and sale of works produced in the main mediums of the printmaking discipline, Kibria Print Fair has entered its third year in 2014. By incorporating every organization dedicated to the production of multiples, the fair has become the sole indicator of printmakers' progress, exponentially enhancing the interest of the connoisseurs in these art forms and in turn injecting into the art world a renewed enthusiasm for their production.
Dhaka Art Center (DAC) was the initiator of the last two consecutive fairs, and at present an Executive Body headed by artist Abul Barq Alvi, dean of the Faculty of Fine Arts, Dhaka University, looks after the fair. DAC also manoeuvers activities year round with the goal of promoting printmaking from within their premises where the Kibria Printmaking Studio is housed. The Studio comes packed with the physical properties and paraphernalia essential for etching to commence in relative ease.
The space, informal and always teeming with activities, facilitates both established and emerging artists interested in carrying out their work on a regular basis. Focused on an affordable way for the artists to continue with their practice in etching, the Studio extends its logistical support and the entrepreneurial spirit to the Fair. Inaugurated in 2010, when DAC came into being, the studio now looks after the needs of mostly the younger generation of printmakers.
The fair, which assumed to have sparked the current surge in the production of prints, in its recent edition, which ran its course from February 12-22, 2014, experienced a palpable rise in the bulk of freights and also in sale. A total of twelve studios including four public and one private university departments and seven gallery-affiliated and independent spaces for printmaking helped transform the six-day jamboree into a meeting point of art loving crowds, artists and, most importantly, an array of works in lithography, woodcut, etching and aquatint as well as mixed mediums.
As part of their effort to recognize the contribution of artists in the printmaking medium, the Fair has conferred a lifetime achievement award to the veteran artist Rafiqun Nabi. The launch event saw Nabi, whose woodcut prints have been a major underpinning of his fifty year-long practice, being beatified through a modest ceremony where the organizers handed over the crest following a discussion highlighting his achievements. The Executive Committee is committed to recognizing every living artist whose relentless efforts made printmaking an intriguing avenue to encounter works of artistic verve and to ensure the quality of editions. The Committee would continue to recognize these printmakers choosing to beatify one every year and selection will be made according to seniority.
- DEPART DESK