Faryal Ahsan


Faryal Ahsan is a contemporary Pakistani artist who was born on 6th August, 1990 in Lahore. She is a fresh graduate from the National College of Arts with a bachelor's degree in Miniature painting.


Miniature painting, being my medium, has a fascinating history which has always intrigued me. The way each culture had its own separate identity, yet had elements inspired by one another. It was the way miniature painting had progressed through the years, flowing from one era of rule to another, taking with it the essence and adding it on to form an entirely new genre of miniature.

Different artisans from all over the world were collected by kings to follow their daily life routines and illustrate their expeditions to form their life journals. Each major artist had a number of apprentices working under him to help build up the illustration and each apprentice was allocated a certain element in every art work. Thus the illustrations, though under one artist's name, would have been constructed by different sets of talented artisans.

My work revolves around deconstructing and reconstructing this afore mentioned process. Therefore the illusion of a cut and paste element is apparent in the end result highlighting how the miniature paintings were built up. In my work I incorporate local imagery and the small details in our daily lives that often go unnoticed in order to celebrate the common man instead of kingships and hierarchies that usually miniatures used to revolve around.

I start my process by taking photographs of everything and everyone so I can capture the essence of my culturally rich city. Then I create a storyboard by assembling them around the idea for my series. Once my storyboards are complete, I shift to traditionally painting them out.

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