Mahwish Chishty

My visit to Pakistan in 2011 inspired my recent body of work. I am creating formal paintings that depict contradictions and irony within its pictorial coding. Starting from a silhouette of an Unmanned Aerial Vehicle, I paint colorful folk ‘truck art’ imagery on these war machines to give them a second skin that opens a dialogue about Pakistani culture.

These paintings are accompanied by culturally loaded text. Poetic expressions in combination with stark iconography give birth to a new visual language. By applying photo-transferred images from Pakistani print media and layering it with traditional miniature painting, I challenge the grotesque reality of modern warfare. I am interested in the juxtaposition of terror with the representation of cultural beauty.