About Vasl

Vasl Artists’ Association is affiliated with the Triangle Network, UK,which is an international network of artists and art organizations.

The term ‘Vasl’ originating from both Urdu and Persian poetry, has an enriched deep association of a physical or transcendent connection between two. Inspired by this philosophy, Vasl Artist’s Association functions as a platform for encouraging the freedom to express and nurture creativity. Established in 2001 and based in Karachi, Pakistan. Vasl is a not-for-profit organization that is also affiliated with the Triangle Network, which was founded in 1982 – a global network of artists and visual arts organization that support professional development and cultural exchange. Since its inception, more than 600 international and local artists have undertaken Vasl residencies, attended various workshops and created projects of significance.

Vasl’s programs offer unique resources and spaces:

1. Vasl’s facilities include a fully furnished apartment which is in the hub of Karachi. It includes Vasl’s office, a lovely rooftop studio which accommodates various art affairs, ranging from enlightening artist talks to other programs such as immersive and productive workshops. With the assistance and guidance from fellow Vasl staff, both residents and visiting artists work collectively to create cultural and statement art pieces.

2. Vasl consistently runs their residency programs throughout the year. The Vasl Residencies and Workshops provide a space and supportive manifesto for professional artists and innovative minds, not only from Pakistan but international artists who are interested in expanding their horizons. The key components of Vasl’s residency program includes access to Vasl studios, city orientation programs, constructive feedback and critique by established artists, research facilitations, as well as building strong connections with Vasl’s thriving community of supporting institutions.

3. Taaza Tareen is Vasl’s annual flagship residency which was founded in 2005. Taaza Tareen is a steppingstone for fresh graduates from various Pakistani art institutions who are in need of support in order to build their ideas into careers. Taaza Tareen residencies have supported over 50 artists at this formative stage of their professional life. Exceptional visual artists are awarded the ‘Vasl Research Grant’ by the Taaza Tareen residency, which has been selected by a panel of entrenched art professionals.

4. Vasl’s Educational Outreach programs continuously expand the dialogue of art with diverse communities and localities. The main focus on education aids in developing critical thinking regarding art and its relation to modern day society which includes enlightening mentoring workshops for art educators to enhance their professional skills in the higher education sector. Additionally, Vasl has designed and published not only manuals but workbooks to help enhance art education with private and governmental institutions.

5. Vasl bolsters research and publications regarding contemporary art practices through publishing and sponsoring artist books, as well as incorporating writers and curators in our residencies. Undertaking the need for documenting the practice of artists, Vasl produces in-house publications such as our ‘Conversations with Contemporary Pakistani Artists’ series which documents and focuses on emerging Pakistani artists and their dialogues with society.

The Vasl apartment includes two fully furnished ensuite bedrooms, a communal living space adorned with works from various artists since the establishment of Vasl, a kitchenette as well as dining area. There is plenty of storage capacity available and a lovely rooftop studio space for artists to work in. The Vasl employees work within the office spaces providing in the apartment to facilitate and organise ongoing and upcoming future projects with our resident artists and prospective collaborators. The building which Vasl resides in also includes the popular T2F (The Second Floor) café, which also functions as a library and includes an interchangeable event space for multiple activities on the floors below.

Vasl Board Members 2019

Rosa Maria Falvo is an independent writer and curator, specializing in Asia-Pacific and Middle Eastern contemporary art, as well as an International Commissions Editor for major arts publishers in Milan. Italian-Australian, she has attained degrees from Monash University in Melbourne, and Perugia University in Italy. Rosa is particularly interested in the power of the arts as vehicles for cultural education, appreciation, and international exchange.

Dr. Kamran Asdar Ali is the Dean of the Mushtaq Ahmed Gurmani School of Humanities and Social Sciences at the Lahore University of Management Sciences (LUMS) and Professor of anthropology at the University of Texas, Austin. He is the author of Planning the Family in Egypt: New Bodies, New Selves (2002) and the co-editor of Gendering Urban Space in the Middle East, South Asia and Africa (2008), Comparing Cities: Middle East and South Asia (2009) and Gender, Politics, and Performance in South Asia (2015). His recent publications have been on gender, ethnicity, class politics, sexuality and popular culture in Pakistan. His more recent book is Communism in Pakistan: Politics and Class Activism 1947-1972 (2015).

Dr. Iftikhar Dadi is an associate professor in the Department of History of Art at Cornell University. He is the author of Modernism and the Art of Muslim South Asia (2010) and the edited monograph Anwar Jalal Shemza (2015). Dadi has co-edited Lines of Control: Partition as a Productive Space (2012); and Unpacking Europe: Towards a Critical Reading (2001). Dadi serves on the editorial advisory boards of the journals Archives of Asian Art; Bio-Scope: South Asian Screen Studies; and Art Journal (during 2007-2011). He is advisor to Asia Art Archive (Hong Kong), and co-director of The Institute for Comparative Modernities at Cornell University.

Dr Mikala Tai is the director of 4A Centre for Contemporary Asian Art, Sydney. As a curator, researcher, and academic specializing in contemporary Asian art, she has collaborated with local, national, and international organizations to strengthen ties between Australia and Asia. Tai has taught at Monash University, Royal Melbourne Institute of Technology (RMIT), and the University of Melbourne in both undergraduate and postgraduate programs. . In 2015, Tai received her PhD, focusing on the influence of the global city on China’s local art infrastructure.

Khurram Kasim is on the board of directors of various companies of the Hasham Group, which is his family concern and was established by his grandfather Mr. Haji Hasham in 1948. Mr. Kasim started collecting contemporary Pakistani art in 1997. Over the past twenty years he has developed one of the most significant private contemporary art collections in Pakistan. Besides art, Mr. Kasim has a keen interest in design and in 2017 he launched his furniture design brand BRAT with an exhibition in Karachi. In 2017, he established the Khurram Kasim Art Foundation. KKAF’s maiden initiative is to provide sponsorship for an artist from Pakistan to be selected for the Delfina Foundation residency in the United Kingdom every year.

Duraid Qureshi is the CEO and co founder of the HUM Network Ltd and one of Pakistan’s leading entrepreneurs. Having completed his Masters in Business Administration from Lahore University of Management Sciences in 1997, he pursued an advanced management program at  Harvard Business School in 2009. Mr Qureshi has been the Chief Operating Officer  at Al-Abbas Sugar Mill Ltd. and Moomal Productions Private Ltd.

Nadeem Khalid possesses more than ­­­­­­­­­35 years of professional experience of managing Herbion Group of Companies, which manufactures and markets natural medicines in more than 25 countries of the world, employing 1,200 people.
He is serving on the Board of Governors, WWF since 2014 and was the Commodore of Karachi Yacht Club in the year 2009 and its Honorary Secretary from 2007-2017. He is also serving on the board of Directors of Peace Niche/ T2F and VASL.
He has a Master’s degree in Mechanical Engineering (Gas and Steam Turbines) from People’s Friendship University, Moscow, Russia and is interested in literature, Art, Political Economy and History.

Adeela Suleman received her BFA from the Indus Valley School of Art and Architecture, Karachi in 1999 and before that she did her MA in International Relations from Karachi University in 1995. Currently Suleman is Associate Professor and Head of Fine Art Department at The Indus Valley School of Art & Architecture, Karachi, Pakistan. She is the founding member and Director of Vasl Artists’ Association, Karachi, Pakistan.

Naila Mahmood is a Karachi based visual artist, writer and documentary photographer. Her work revolves around the complexities of urban spaces. She also does research based photographic projects. Her work has been shown nationally and internationally. She is a member of the Executive Council and adjunct faculty at the Indus Valley School of Art and Architecture. She is the Director of the Vasl Artists’ Association

Vasl Working Team 2018 - 2019

Anosha Zia is a graphic designer and illustrator. She graduated in 2016 with a bachelors degree in Communication Design from the Indus Valley School of Art and Architecture. She was recently a part of an exhibition Jaanch Partaal | Pehlay Parkhiye, Phir Dijiye, curated by Vasl Artists’ Association. She has also worked at Habitt, overlooking campaign planning and management. Her illustrative work focuses on line and colour. Anosha works as a Graphic Designer at Vasl Artists’ Association since 2018.

Hira Khan is a practicing visual artist and a Project Coordinator at the Vasl Artists’ Association where she coordinates and assists visiting resident artists with the production of their art. Khan completed her bachelor’s degree in Fine Art in 2015 from the Indus Valley School of Art and Architecture, Karachi. With an avid inclination towards material explorations and forms, her individual practice is primarily in sculpture. Hira has displayed her work in multiple group shows at galleries in Karachi and has recently been a resident artist with a solo show at the Hollows Artspace, New York.

Halima Sadia is a graphic designer with an independent freelance practice since 2014. She graduated with bachelors in communication design from the Indus Valley School of Art and Architecture. Her prominent projects include branding of the IAMKARACHI campaign & events in 2015, art direction & graphic design of the Karachi Biennale 2017 and design & execution of the Children’s Section of National History Museum by The Citizens Archive of Pakistan. Halima works as the Creative Manager at Vasl Artists’ Association.

Razin Rubin received her B.F.A from the Indus Valley School of Art and Architecture, Karachi in 2016. She has explored various mediums, but her studio practice focuses on miniature painting, drawing and photography. Rubin’s work interacts with the viewer and creates a dialogue around the things she has witnessed. Rubin has exhibited her work extensively in Pakistan as well as in New York. Rubin currently lives and works in Karachi and is the assistant coordinator at Vasl Artists’ Association since 2017.

Rental

Vasl Artists’ Association utilizes the apartment primarily for Vasl residency programs, workshops and collaborators. However, upon availibility, the association does offer accommodation to those individuals who belong to art backgrounds and wish to stay in Karachi for their work and research. In such cases the rooms are rented out for affordable rates only when unoccupied by Vasl resident artists. All proceeds raised through the rental of our accommodation and studio spaces go towards supporting our programs.

Overview of facilities:

  • Two bedrooms with attached bathrooms,
  • WiFi and air conditioning,
  • Printing, scanning and other multi-media gadgets
  • Back-up generator
  • Kitchen, dining area and communal living space
  • Studio/workspace accessible to in-house artists
  • 24 hours Assistant Staff.

Please contact us for further assistance

About Triangle Network

Triangle Network is a global network of artists and arts organisations that support professional development and cultural exchange amongst artists, curators, cultural workers and organisations throughout the world.

Since 1982, Triangle has provided significant opportunities for over 4,500 artists through workshops, residencies, events, exhibitions, work placements and studio provision. This has led to the creation, association and partnership of Triangle Network projects and organisations in over 40 countries – an extensive, artist-focused infrastructure that continues to adapt and thrive.

More about Triangle Network