Biennales Worldwide; Chances & Challenges

with Ursulla Zeller, curator of Art Space, Germany in coversation with Amin Gulgee, Chief curator KB17, moderated by Stefan Winkler, Director Goethe Institut Pakistan

Saturday, January 12, 2018

Ursula Zeller is a director at Alimentarium in Vevey, Switzerland and was the director of Zeppelin Museum in Friedrichshafen, Germany. Dr. Zeller was also the head of the Visual Arts Department at the Institute for Foreign Cultural Relations in Stuttgart, Germany. She has written in depth on contemporary art practices and biennales.

Amin Gulgee is an eminent sculptor and performance artist and has extensively performed and exhibited his work nationally and internationally. He was the Chief Curator of the first Karachi Biennale in 2017.

Stefan Winkler is the Director of Goethe Institut Pakistan. He was the moderator for the talk.

All That Perishes on the Edge of Land

with Hira Nabi

Saturday, February 3, 2018

Hira Nabi’s latest work is part of Vasl’s residency, the artist explores Gadani’s shipwrecked yard as a site of fractured stories and contesting truths. Her research and work derive from an ongoing preoccupation with labour, networks of capital and movement, human vulnerability and a focus on the environment as a primary site if investigation. This work revisits various and often, contrasting narratives regarding accidents, ownership of ships and ways of existence. Her work contemplates surrealist surroundings in par with quotidian workplace occurrences that remain universally concerned.

Protektorama Narrates Identitecture [5.4.8]

with Johannes Paul Raether

in collaboration with Goethe Institut Pakistan

Tuesday, October 9, 2018

Vasl’s resident artist Johannes Paul Raether hosted a performative lecture through the collaboration of Vasl Artist’s Association with the Goethe-Institut Pakistan on the Vasl rooftop. Raether lives and works in Berlin, Germany. His works are constructed identities (Avatars, Alter-Identities or Self Sisters) emerging at various sites in public spaces in order to research, educate and story tell. As colourful beings made up from everyday objects, they discuss complex topics as bio and reproductive industries, globalised tourism or occult substances in regard to contemporary technology. Raether’s works and performances have been showcased at numerous public spaces and eminent art galleries, globally. Raether publishes in Texte zur Kunst and is currently a professor at the arts academy, Kunstakademie in Dusseldorf.


David Alesworth in conversation 

with Dr. Asma Mundrawala

Tuesday, August 22, 2017

‘David Alesworth in conversation with Dr. Asma Mundrawala’ had taken place at the Vasl residence. Internationally acclaimed artist, David Chalmers Alesworth discussed his previous works with visual artist and theatre practitioner, Dr. Asma Mundrawala. The talk had received positive public attention and was attended by not only friends and colleagues, but many art students from universities all over Karachi. Alesworth discussed his interest in botanical studies, his research in gardens and the confluent inspirations from surrounding natural and urban environments. Both artists discussed and focused on Alesworth’s progression regarding his projects while sharing images of some of his statement pieces which were included in the Karachi Pop Art movement.

The Hospital and the Cinema 

Althea Thauberger in conversation with Zarmeene Shah
with Syed Ammad Tahir, Momin Zafar, Vajdaan Shah & Zehra Nawab

Wednesday, September 6, 2017

As part of the Vasl Rooftop Series and in support of Karachi Biennale 17, Vasl Artists’ Association hosted a talk titled ‘The Hospital and the Cinema’. The talk included Vancouver based artist, Althea Thauberger who spoke about her previous works in Prague, Czech Republic with Karachi based curator and art critic Zarmeene Shah at Vasl Artists’ Association on September 6, 2017.

In the first half of the talk, Althea and Zarmeene discussed theatre, film and the role it has played in Althea’s work. The second half of the talk brought together Althea and her Pakistani collaborators for a film which they were directing as part of Karachi Biennale. The film explored the history behind a popular cinema on M.A. Jinnah Road in Karachi called Capri Cinema. The directors and collaborators for this film were; Syed Ammad Tahir, Momin Zafar, Vajdaan Shah and Zehra Nawab.

‘This Could Go On For Awhile..’

with Stephen Sheehan for KB17

Tuesday, October 3, 2017

Vasl Artists’ Association launched our first volume and series of Artists’ Books – ‘Conversations with Contemporary Pakistani Artists’ at Vasl’s rooftop. The book launch included a brief yet informative discussion between the four selected artist contributors for Volume 1; Aamir Habib, Madiha Hyder, Seema Nusrat and Seher Naveed

These series of publications were one of Vasl’s many initiatives of 2017 in effort to connect a wider amount of the community through extensive research and publications involving contemporary art practices. The book launch provided a supportive backbone for Vasl, giving us the opportunity to discuss the fundamentals of creating publications such as these artist books, in close collaboration with various artists. During the discussion, each artist reminisced about their personal struggles and journeys in the art community. They even chatted about certain obstacles and personal challenges they overcame. References made in the books were utilized to highlight each artists’ individual approach as well as their interests in various spectrums of contemporary art and research.

Pakistan-German Salon | Music, Fashion and Art

in collaboration with The Goethe-Institut, Pakistan

October 25th, 2017

Vasl Artists’ Association in collaboration with Goethe-Institut Pakistan, hosted the Pakistan-German Salon | Music, Fashion and Art on as part of the Vasl Rooftop Talk Series.

German fashion and social designer Miro Craemer in collaboration with Pakistani designer, Waqar Khan, introduced his new collection ‘Sky over Karachi’ which was complimented by Pablo Lauf’s music. The garments were tailored with leather outsourced from Munich, while different forms of silk and cotton used were made locally in Pakistan.

Curators, Sara-Duana Meyer (Cairo, Egypt) and Dr. Bernhart Schwenk (Munich, Germany) focused their discussion around, ‘25 Years of Contemporary Art in Germany’ with Simon Otto (Munich, Germany). Schwenk specified about his work at the Pinakothek der Moderne while Meyer explained the ‘Urbanities’ project which brought the German artists together, through the context of cities and their ever-evolving forms.

 German performance artists, Simon Otto designed a short performance consisting of a dance piece for the Vasl Rooftop event as they were attending Karachi Biennale for a specific project, (OVERxCOM) “Moves”.

Karin Kasbock was Vasl’s resident artist at the time, and was part of Berlin based artist duo, ‘Bankleer’. She presented her work and previous bodies of performances on the Vasl rooftop and was one of the performance artists for the Karachi Biennale 2017. She performed her piece, ‘The Thing’ which was held at the NJV School for a week’s duration.

The evening ended with a productive feedback session regarding the “Cord of Desires” which was a project facilitated by the Vasl Artists’ Association for Miro Craemer, the resident artist in 2016, in response to the Baldia Factory Fire of 2012 which happened in Karachi. Craemer and his fellow collaborators, Manizhe Ali, Hira Khan (Project Coordinator at Vasl Artists’ Association) and Mahwish Ali spoke about their contributions to the project and its extensions which resulted in a seminar and exhibition at the Textile Industry Museum of Augsburg, Germany in 2017.