Performance, Moving Image & Sound

International Artists’ Workshop 


with Amna Saeed, Elisabeth Rosenthal, Magda Fabianczyk, Muzzumil Ruheel,  Narjis Mirza, Sarah Mumtaz, Zeeshan Younas & Zhou Bin

In a three week Vasl International Artists’ Workshop in Karachi, the participating artists were Amna Saeed, Elisabeth Rosenthal, Magda Fabianczyk, Muzzumil Ruheel, Narjis Mirza, Sarah Mumtaz, Zeeshan Younas and Zhou Bin. The project focused on performance, moving image and sound. The workshop was a thematic collaboration of creative energy.

After a three week exploration and intensive research in the city of Karachi and the Manora Island, an open weekend of performances, installations and screenings were held across the city.

Sarah Mumtaz in her video showed herself brushing lipstick from her lips onto her teeth until the lipstick was totally removed, giving her a perfect ‘Colgate Smile’. The video was a moving and witty take on restrictive perceptions of beauty in our society. A victim of Cerebral Palsy, Mumtaz also gave a live performance at the Indus Valley School, reflecting on her early struggles and multiple surgeries that enabled her to walk. The finale was her repeated screams of Sarah Chall Sakti Hai! (Sarah can Walk!) while standing in the central pond. Sarah’s performances were shaped by her first opportunity to travel alone and work independently at age 28 at the Vasl Workshop. Elizabeth Rosenthal, from Germany, created a six-minute video in which she dressed up as a petite woman in a white skirt, whistling loudly in a museum. Rosenthal expressed that, “I wanted to communicate with people, and when I started whistling, they did the same.” Magda Fabianczyk’s  final work consisted of a film installation at Port Grand in Karachi.  In addition, she produced and translated a sound piece in Urdu that was relayed from loud speakers from a truck that travelled across the city during that weekend. The truck was deliberately parked in the proximity of other performances. Amna Saeed touched a nerve with a fancy dinner table setting, arranged with a small screen, instead of a traditional menu. A video shown on the screen depicted an eye that was peeping through a keyhole. Saeed stated that, “Some people have a habit of interfering into other people’s business. That’s what I wanted to show.” Zhou Bin, another resident artist at the workshop, enthralled the audiences with a performance at the popular Sea View beach.