No sooner had Pakistani artist Adeela Suleman’s exhibit opened at the Karachi Biennale
last week than she had an encounter that artists, writers, journalists and activists say has
become common under the current government: It was shut down.
Her installation, a work that referenced the case of a police officer accused of being
behind more than 400 murders and assassinations, was then wrecked and carted off in
Pakistani authorities are cracking down on free speech, a move critics say reflects a
renewed authoritarianism driven by the military but veiled with the veneer of an elected
Criticism of national-security issues and coverage of the political opposition has all but
disappeared from news broadcasts as a result of pressure and guidance from the media
regulator and security officials, according to local journalists.
"Mr. Koraichi uses Arabic semiotics and calligraphy as the basis of his work, and the booth will feature engravings, banners, tapestries and a sculpture."
- Ted Toos, May 1, 2019
"Bhavsar is at once a thoroughly American painter and product of Indian culture, the deeper meanings and values of which have not left him. Never, as he approaches the divine, does he lose touch with the richly cross-cultural experience that has formed him. A Bhavsar painting is immediately recognizable as his."
- Carter Ratcliff, April 6, 2019
"There’s something about the sonorousness of the
language and the richness of his color fields that connects somehow. Overall, Bhavsar’s
works bring out color’s metaphysical aspects and, via his use of raw pigment, its profound
"In his latest paintings, Salman Toor meditates on his life as a gay artist who divides his time between two diametrically opposite communities: New York, where he can live and love openly, and his hometown of Lahore, Pakistan, where the dictates of family and religion demand that he suppress his identity."
"New York-based artist Salman Toor’s brushstrokes place young queer brown men in scenes of love, friendship, and solitude in his luscious oil paintings. In Time After Time, his ongoing exhibition at Aicon Gallery in Manhattan, he challenges the systematic exclusion of queer men of color from art history. Here, his figures claim the foreground with their bodies, donning flamboyant attires over their delicate physiques. The artist’s dandy types nonchalantly sip cocktails, zealously sway to music, or lazily lounge in their downtown apartments. Beauty, vulnerability, and power shines through each painting."
"New York city’s Aicon Gallery exhibits works of fifteen contemporary Pakistani artists, inspiring its title “Sweeping Back the Sea” from video works of artists Omer Wasim and Saira Sheikh, the latter who passed away in 2017. The exhibition aspires to turn the spotlight on contemporary work from the heritage-rich country, by theoretically placing them under common social and historic grounds..."
"The quirkily titled Pale Sentinels: A Metaphor for Dialogue opened on 28 June at Aicon, its bold theme addressing Partition with critically acclaimed, award-winning Indian and Pakistani artists. 'Each artist in this group has, in one way or another, engaged with borders and constraints,' says Hashmi"
Aicon Gallery congratulates Adeela Suleman and Abdullah M. I. Syed on their participation in the exhibition I Don't Want to be There When It Happens, at the Perth Institute of Contemporary Arts (PICA). In response to the 70th anniversary of the Partition of Colonial India (14 August 1947), this exhibition features artists from both Pakistan and India whose evocative practices convey the profound existential unease of our age, either directly or indirectly. They unravel the present time, dealing with the legacy of history, as well as foretelling the future.
"Not a rock music inspired art show, Guns & Roses is the result of an international collaboration between Mumbai-based art gallery, Chatterjee & Lal, and New York-based Aicon Gallery. The theme revolves around expressions of duality, juxtaposing the contrasting aspects of cruelty and beauty; violence and celebration; chaos and order."
Aicon Gallery is proud to congratulate Abullah M. I. Syed on winning Australia's 2017 Carstairs Prize. The Carstairs Prize offers $3,000 assistance to a mid-career Australian artist to present a socially engaged art project that embraces participatory and collaborative experiences. The aim of the funding is to bring participants into active dialogue with the artist in order to involve audiences beyond the art community.
We are delighted to announce the participation of Abdullah M. I. Syed in Asia Contemporary Art Week's 2017 Field Meeting Take 5: Thinking Projects. An annual signature program of ACAW, Field Meeting is a two-day exclusive forum for arts professionals dedicated to newly conceived performances, lecture-performances, and lively discussions. Syed will be staging a new experiential performance work titled Flesh and Blood.
"From the quiet, impressionable surface of the moon to bustling London landmarks, Saad Qureshi’s sculpture, drawing, and installation art explores mental and physical landscapes. The artist’s work poetically probes cultural belonging, interconnectedness, and separation through scale, material, and metaphor."
"The City of Parramatta, a quick express train ride away from Sydney’s central business district, is regarded as a culturally, ethnically and religiously diverse hub within Western Sydney. Many local council initiatives and businesses reflect this sense of multiculturalism, with growing interests in culturally specific tourism, festivals and business ventures. On the flip side, in recent years, some residents in the city have witnessed discrimination in response to encroaching Islamophobia, the growth of anti-intellectual discourse and anti-refugee rhetoric."
Aicon Gallery is delighted to congratulate Abdullah M. I. Syed on being nominated as a finalist for the 2017 Woollahra Small Sculpture Prize. An exhibition featuring finalists' work will be held from October 14 through November 5, 2017. 'Moneyscape III' uses hand cut and assembled money to recall his childhood memories of experiencing the world through images on banknotes.
"The comedic play, The Birds, by the ancient Greek playwright Aristophanes, revolves around the quest of birds to create their own kingdom in the sky between the warring gods in heaven and tempestuous mortals on earth. Loosely inspired by the liminality—the interfacing of the threshold between two planes—of such an imagined space, Indian artist Surendran Nair’s new body of work in “Cuckoonebulopolis: (Flora and) Fauna,” presented in the artist’s first solo exhibition at Aicon Gallery, explores notions of indeterminacy and ambiguity, while intending to push the viewer to consider new hypothetical realms of possibilities."
Aicon Gallery is delighted to announce the acquisition of two seminal video works by Adeela Suleman by Pinakothek der Moderne, Munich. The acquisition will be accompanied by a discussion with the artist at the museum on Thursday, July 20th at 6:30pm in the Ernst von Siemens-Auditorium. The acquired work Don't Despair, Even Over the Fact that You Don't Despair was featured in Suleman's exhibition Not Everyone's Heaven held at Aicon Gallery in June, 2017.
Aicon Gallery is delighted to congratulate Adeela Suleman on her participation in The Artist / Knight, a group exhibition at Gaasbeek Castle, Brussels. The Artist/Knight is an exhibition with and about artists imbued with the spirit of chivalry and who bring the knight to life in countless incarnations, ranging from gentle irony to unbounded passion. The exhibition runs from July 11th through November 5th and features artists such Marina Abramovic, Tracey Emin, Damien Hirst, Barbara Kruger, Jonathan Meese, and Yoko Ono, among many others.
"New York’s Aicon Gallery unveiled nearly half a century of work by the prolific Indian painter Anjolie Ela Menon in her first-ever retrospective exhibition in the United States. While the New Delhi-based artist has previously exhibited stateside, “A Retrospective” featured over 40 paintings and drawings from Menon’s oeuvre, offering American audiences a rare glimpse of early pieces borrowed from private collections alongside more recent works."
We are thrilled to announce the exhibition All the Flowers Are for Me by Anila Quayyum Agha at the Cincinnati Art Museum. The exhibition will feature Agha's iconic floating installation All the Flowers Are for Me (Red) along with a selection of works on paper. The exhibition will be on view from June 17th through October 15th, 2017.
"A career spanning over five decades, Menon’s aim, as is witnessed in her bio is to “defy categorization”, which she has successfully achieved. Her work has distinct influences of Byzantine art, her figures reminiscent of icons seen in early Christian art with beautiful rendering of Indian themes. The amalgamation of the western style with the eastern subject is a visual treat for the senses and I wandered around the exhibition trying to soak up everything in one day."
"In these works (part of her solo exhibition at Aicon Gallery New York starting from May 20, 2017), the artist probes the multiple facades of our life. First the choice of a landscape, a picture postcard view, is important because it indicates how we view nature, not as what we experience with unpleasant encounters but as ideal setting almost replicating our concept of Eden."
"The first North American solo exhibition of Ernest Mancoba included four small paintings ranging in date from 1958 to 1985 (one is undated) and some twenty works on paper (many of them likewise undated, but the others are mostly from the early 1990s), giving art lovers on this side of the Atlantic at least a nodding acquaintance with an oeuvre I suspect we are going to get to know much better in coming years."
"From 1983 to 2009, a grisly civil war gripped the island nation of Sri Lanka. In the aftermath, 13 artists unpacked the trauma of war as part of the group exhibition “Portraits of Intervention” at Aicon Gallery in New York. Curator Bansie Vasvani said she was drawn to the organic quality of these artists’ responses to the bloodshed, as well as the variation in form found in those reactions."
"For Mancoba, this freedom also meant release from art that had to look African or Western; he could forge what he saw as a utopian synthesis. Accordingly, the work at Aicon, all from after Cobra dissolved in 1951, thwarts easy cultural readings. In small oil paintings, abstract strokes and daubs of color coalesce into sketchy, featureless figures; in related ink drawings they resemble large-headed African sculptures. Other ink drawings are entirely abstract, made up cursive forms that, like characters from an imagery alphabet, spin and tumble across a page."
"M. Pravat’s recently concluded solo show at Aicon Gallery in Manhattan was almost a blueprint for loss, life and living. About streetscapes and mindscapes and memories but also about re-imagination, and new layerings added to the scaffolding of what we remember. Did it all happen or is that just how we remember it? The show was also about absences and presences."
Aicon Gallery is proud to congratulate artist and long-time friend Abir Karmakar on being awarded the first Asia Arts Future Award present in India by the Asia Society. “This is Asia’s moment,” says Boon Hui Tan, Vice President of Global Arts and Cultural Programs at Asia Society and Director of Asia Society Museum in New York. “Asia Society’s Asian Arts Awards India affirms that places of extraordinary artistic creativity are occurring all over the Asia region. South Asia is one of those regions where the encounter between millennium deep civilizations and the global contemporary is nurturing exciting new forms of artistic practice. As a global initiative, this event in India builds on the original awards platform in Hong Kong to give a more diverse picture of Asian art in the contemporary moment.”
Aicon Gallery is proud to share the news that Abdullah M. I. Syed will be presenting Flying Buck Exchange, a performance over three days, as part of the inaugural Asia-Pacific Triennial of Performing Arts (Asia TOPA), taking place in Melbourne, Australia from February 13 through March 6, 2017. Syed’s tongue-in-cheek turn of phrase, Bucking, will see him consuming, distributing and exchanging currency, in this case, in the form of the fabled US dollar bills.
"THE NEW YORK SEASON YEAR SAW SOME FINE GALLERY SOLOS. Omer Fast (James Cohan); Rachid Koraichi (Aicon); Zoe Leonard (Hauser & Wirth); Hilton Als (The Artist’s Institute); Carolee Schneemann (Lelong and P.P.O.W.); Howardena Pindell (Garth Greenan); and an installation by the ineffable Genesis P-Orridge at the Rubin Museum."
"Pakistanis have many many talents. Stalking, creeping and making up the most absurd things about other people. But other than that there are Pakistanis with real talent and they deserve as much of our attention for hustling and making themselves a name with their insane creativity.
Here’s our jaw-dropping list of amazing Pakistani artists that NEED to be followed right now."
"The ongoing intriguing group show titled Delicate Bond of Steel is a result of the unique exchange between Chatterjee & Lal in Mumbai and Aicon Gallery in New York. The latter’s first gallery show in the country, hosted by the South Mumbai exhibition space, features works of several South Asian artists based out of Australia, the U.S., Bangladesh and India."
"Aicon Gallery, a New York space that focuses on South East Asian art in particular, will bring works by Rasheed Araeen, Saad Qureshi and Irfan Hassan to the capital. The gallery also participates in Art Dubai, but sees the proximity to the museums in the capital as an important reason also to attend Abu Dhabi Art."
"It was a coincidence that Aditya Pande was in the gallery when I visited his solo exhibition at New York’s Aicon Gallery in May. A regular visitor, I greeted the staff and mentioned that I was planning to write a piece about the artist. At this news he was dragged over and responded to my introduction with a modest incredulity that was quickly put aside as we ran through an impromptu tour of the show."
We are thrilled to announce the participation of Rasheed Araeen in the 57th Edition of the Venice Biennale, which runs from May 13 through November 26, 2017. Additionally, we are pleased to announce his participation in Documenta 14 in Athens, Greece from April 8 through July 16, 2017, and Kassel, Germany from June 10 to September 17. The projects will lead up to the opening of his major Retrospective at the Van Abbemuseum, Eindhoven, the Netherlands, which will run from December 2, 2017 to April 8, 2018.
We are delighted to announce the New York premier of the first installment of BBC Four's documentary series Treasures of the Indus - Pakistan Unveiled, hosted by Sona Dutta, on Friday, October 21, 2016 at 6pm. The screening is held in conjunction with the first major New York exhibition by Anila Quayyum Agha, Walking with My Mother's Shadow.
Join Pakistani-American artist Anila Quayyum Agha and Holly Shen, BAM’s Curator of Visual Arts, Staurday, October 22nd at 4pm, for a conversation coinciding with Agha’s solo exhibition at Aicon Gallery, Walking with My Mother’s Shadow. Agha will discuss her monumental hanging sculpture All the Flowers are for Me, on view in the BAM Fisher lobby, adjacent to the Wendy’s Subway Reading Room. Originally installed as part of BAM’s 2016 Winter/Spring exhibition Arch of My Eye’s Orbit, curated by Hrag Vartanian, Agha’s installation has been extended after overwhelmingly positive response from BAM audiences.
We are thrilled to announce the participation of Adeela Suleman in the 2016 edition of the Singapore Biennale, An Atlas of Mirrors, which runs from October 27, 2016 through February 26, 2017. Suleman's recent work has centered around hand-beaten steel reliefs, rendered in the hammered metalworking tradition of Islamic art, depicting beheaded figures engaged in violent, but also absurd, scenes of armed conflict. Her latest solo exhibition with Aicon Gallery New York, Towards the End, took place in 2014.
We are delighted to announce that a special exhibition showcasing the full retrospective of the works of Rasheed Araeen will be held at the Van Abbe Museum in Eindhoven, Netherlands from December 2, 2017 through April 8, 2018. The exhibition will showcase 60 years of Araeen's works, including significant institutional and private loans, selections that form the artist’s archives, and works realized specifically for the exhibition
We are delighted to announce the participation of Abir Karmakar in the 2016 edition of the prestigious Kochi-Muziris Biennale, which runs from December 12, 2016 through March 29, 2017. Studying the traditions of oil painting and its varying forms of spatial construction, Karmakar's photorealistic canvas and trompe-l’œil-esque paintings dramatise the space between perception and interpretation. His latest solo exhibition with Aicon Gallery New York, Uncanny Space, took place in 2015.
"The selection of artwork is divided into two important sets - the first, from the artist’s early days in Karachi delving into the abstract scene that led to his groundbreaking introduction of the kinetic into Minimalist art. The second a series of new canvases exploring color-field, movement, and depth through checkered grids derived from traditional Islamic architectural and textile patterning. When combined together these form a trajectory mapping the artist’s 60 year long constantly evolving and highly dynamic oeuvre and artistic career."
Aicon Gallery is delighted to offer our warmest congratulations to artist and friend Saad Qureshi on being commissioned by NOVA to create a major new site-specific public installation for the district of Victoria in Central London. The project launches on November 22, 2016 and "looks at the portability of landscapes, and the human mind as a vehicle that allows places to travel, to be carried in the memory from one location to another,” Qureshi explains.
We are delighted to announce the participation of Salman Toor in the 2016 edition of the prestigious Kochi-Muziris Biennale, which runs from December 12, 2016 through March 29, 2017. Toor's work, installed in the Aspinwall section of the Biennale, will consist of a large installation of works on canvas both inspired by and presented alongside his multi-media collaboration with exiled Pakistani poet Hasan Mujtaba, which was born of the artist's 2015 exhibition Resident Alien at Aicon Gallery, New York.
We are excited to announce the inclusion of Rasheed Araeen in the upcoming exhibition Postwar: Art Between the Pacific and the Atlantic, 1945 - 1965, on view at Haus de Kunst, Munich, Germany from October 14, 2016 through March 26, 2017. Alongside Araeen's works My First Sculpture (1959) and Burning Bicycle Tires (1959-61), the exhibition features the work of Joseph Beuys, Robert Rauschenberg and many others. "The exhibition examines the vibrant and turbulent postwar period as a global phenomenon for the first time in recent exhibition history. In eight dramatic chapters, the exhibition guides visitors through the first 20 years following the end of World War II..."
We are pleased to annouce that Rasheed Araeen will be speaking at the Guggenheim New York on Friday Sept. 23, 2016 at 2pm as part of the museum's seires of lectures (De)Coupling as Discourse on the Global South, taking place concurrent with the exhibition But a Storm is Blowing from Paradise, on view until October 5, 2016. The discussion, organized by Sara Raza, will explore "the autonomous rise of contemporary art in the Global South, this two-day symposium traces aesthetic and contextual change to identify an elastic discourse around global visual culture."
Aicon Gallery New York is proud to announce Geometry and Symmetry | New Works by Rasheed Araeen, a major new exhibition by the London-based, Pakistani-born artist. A pioneering artist and voice for alternative and Non-Western interpretations of Minimalist and Conceptual art in the 1960s and 70s, Araeen’s work in this exhibition spans his oeuvre from his beginnings in Pakistan and London to the present day.
"Engagingly installed across two of BAM’s three buildings, works by Kamrooz Aram, Anila Quayyum Agha, Kameelah Janan Rasheed and Slavs and Tatars inhabit spaces not originally conceived for contemporary art, using the architecture as a frame to “uncover the visual and physical space between ancient and modern, past and present,” and to cloud the distinction between the work of art and its surroundings. In an exciting development of his ongoing investigation."
We are delighted to announce that Rasheed Araeen's work Lovers (1968) is now on permanent view in the exhibition Between Object and Architecture at the Tate Modern in London. The exhibition, on display in Switch House, Level 2, West, explores the ongoing dialog between Contemporary Art and Architecture, and between materials and space. Araeen's Lovers is joined in the West Room by work from artists such as Carl Andre, Felix Gonzalez-Torres, Yayoi Kusama, and many others. Lovers was acquired by the Tate in 2011, joining the works 3Y + 3B (1969), Rang Baranga (1969), Bismullah (1988), and Zero to Infinity (1968 - 2007) in their permanent collection.
Aicon Gallery is proud to announce the most recent set of insitutional acquistions by artist Rasheed Araeen. Since Araeen's last solo exhibition, Minimalism Then and Now, held at Aicon Gallery in May, 2015, we are delighted to have placed his work with the following collections. The Guggenheim, Abu Dhabi - Chakras (1969-70), The Albright-Knox Art Gallery, Buffalo, NY - Pehli Si Muhabut (1971/2015), The Kiran Nadar Museum of Art, New Delhi - Rang Baranga II (1969/2014), The Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York - Chaar Yaar II (1968), and The Art Institute of Chicago, IL - Punj Neelay (1970).
"The recent Met Breuer survey of work by the Indian artist Nasreen Mohamedi (1937-1990) was a first exposure for many New Yorkers to a Minimalist-style strain in contemporary South Asian art. In reality, the presence of that aesthetic has long been,and continues to be, substantial, as this tender show at the Aicon Gallery, “Between Structure and Matter: Other Minimal Futures,” demonstrates."
“Between Structure and Matter: Other Minimal Futures,” on view through July 2 at Aicon Gallery in New York, attempts to flip this attitude forward and outward, strategically pushing the past into and through an expanded present. Citing the historian of minimalism James Meyer, for whom the movement was fundamentally irreducible — a “field of difference,” as he wrote his 2001 volume “Minimalism: Art and Polemics in the Sixties” — exhibition co-curator Murtaza Vali stated on a recent afternoon at the gallery his belief that “other minimal futures are possible, and here are some examples of how it has happened.
Aicon gallery is proud to congratulate artist Abdullah M. I. Syed on his exhibition Substitute: The Untold Narrative of a Mother and Son, running at the Fairfield City Museum & Gallery in Sydney, Australia from June 4 - August 6, 2016. The exhibition is the culmination of a six month long artist residency Syed undertook at the Fairfield City Museum & Gallery from 2015-2016, and "investigates ideas of memory, intimacy, migration and gender role attitudes in a complex narrative that weaves together the personal, the familial and the historical through photographic digital prints, sculptural works, drawings, video and installation, as well as an outreach project engaging members of the Sydney community and beyond."
We are pleased to announce that Rasheed Araeen's work will be on view in the exhibition Defining Sculpture at the Albright-Knox Art Gallery in Buffalo, New York. The exhibition, which centers around the question of "What sculpture is and is not" runs from June 18 - October 9, 2016, and is comprised of work from the museum's permanent collection, featuring artists such as Robert Rauschenberg, Claes Oldenburg, Tara Donovan, and many others. Araeen's work was acquired by the museum for their permanent collection in Spring of 2015.
"Curated by Murtaza Vali and Prajit Dutta, this exhibition features artists hailing from or affiliated with South Asia and the broader Middle East. It focuses on Minimalism as a capacious philosophical concept that draws together non-Western practitioners from different generations. The works end up defying this aesthetic categorization, however, as there is a subtle emotional tactility throughout the show that enables content—personal, political—that, of course, runs counter to chilly, textbook Minimalism."
Aicon Gallery congratulates artists Nadia Kaabi-Linke and Mohammed Kazem on their participation in the Guggenheim New York's first major survey of art from North Africa and the Middle East, But a Storm is Blowing from Paradise, running from April 29 - October 5, 2016. We are honored to be showing both artists, concurrent with the Guggenheim, in our exhibition Between Structure and Matter: Other Minimal Futures, on view from May 26 - July 2, 2016. The Guggenheim exhibition "through painting, drawing, sculpture, installation and video...presents a spectrum of artistic voices and critical concerns from a rapidly evolving region."
"Concurrent with the display of La prière des absents in Marrakech, in New York the artist recently had a solo exhibition at Aicon Gallery, Love Side by Side with the Soul, where one could come closer to the surface of his vases and view them with other works, such as a series of banners called The Invisible Masters. Yet in spite of the ability to almost touch the ceramics in New York, one still cannot easily read all the words. Standing close to one vase from La prière, one could just make out the name of the artist’s mother, Rahima, repeating in reverse, and force oneself to read other words backward."
"Rachid Koraichi, who has been widely exhibited internationally for decades, is only now having his first New York solo exhibition. Born in Algeria in 1947, he came from a family of Quranic scholars and copyists in a Sufi tradition. He trained as a calligrapher before studying painting and printmaking in Paris in the 1970s and has made the written word, as a conveyor of spiritual philosophy, poetry and politics, his primary medium. Just as language serves as a visual binder in many Islamic cultures, so it does in Mr. Koraichi’s formally diverse but completely of-a-piece show, “Love Side by Side With the Soul,” at Aicon Gallery."
Aicon Gallery congratulates artist Rachid Koraichi on his participation in the 2016 Marrakech Biennale, Not New Now, running from Feburary 24 - August 5, 2016. During the Biennale's run, we are honored to be hosting the first major showing of Koraichi's work in New York, in collaboration with October Gallery, London, with the exhibition Rachid Koraichi | Love Side by Side with the Soul, on view from March 3 - April 16, 2016.
"Rekha Rodwittiya’s iconic female figures loom large. An amalgamation of Indian classical and tribal images, Rodwittiya’s asexual goddesses evade easy categorization. Currently in her solo exhibition Rituals of Memory at Aicon Gallery, they command an uncanny presence and beg scrutiny."http://hyperallergic.com/276736/talismanic-and-tenacious-goddesses-that-resist-femininity/
"Prominent Baroda-based feminist artist Rekha Rodwittiya, who is the founder of The Collective Studio Baroda, is back here after two decades with a major exhibition at the Aicon Gallery, ‘The Rituals of Memory: Personal Folklores and Other Tales’, which runs from Feb. 4 through Feb. 27th."
"Pakistani artist Adeel uz Zafar skillfully blends the pleasant and the unpleasant memories we all associate with childhood. Originally a children's book illustrator, his work derives its imagery from a collective international pop culture, but the playful cartoon characters he depicts appear in a damaged, far scarier form than we are used to seeing them.
"Recently, Aicon Gallery in York exhibited Monomania — the first solo US exhibition of Karachi-based artist Adeel uz Zafar. The title of the exhibition summed up the themes that the works encapsulate. Monomania presents a commentary on the shades of insanity where thoughts focus on a specific cluster of subjects; the excessive enthusiasm for a single thing, or idea. Zafar’s work is quite obsessive to say the least."
"Salman Toor is the best kind of contemporary painter: funny, insightful, and not afraid to get personal. His colorful, figurative images are both intimate and relatable, featuring crowds of people engaging in romantic or imaginative adventures, filled with references to the artist’s many travels and international background."
"New York City has facilitated my cobbling together of seemingly divergent understandings of developing societies seething in turmoil, along with the microcosms of cultures like Brooklyn’s art scene. Since I left Lahore, my work has developed in more abstract directions in order to host and superimpose imagined narratives and homelands in which personal and global concerns intersect.”
"Salman Toor’s insular scenes of life in Pakistan have vanished. Instead ghosts, hobos, poets, exiles, counts, ascetics, rabble-rousers, vagrants, and partygoers inhabit a no-man’s-land where time stands still. In Toor’s second solo exhibition at New York’s Aicon Gallery, Resident Alien, an artist possessed by a spirit to experiment and plunge into a new world has emerged."
"The Kominas brought the curtain down on Asian Contemporary Arts Week at the Aicon Gallery on November 8 surrounded by the exhibition of works from Salman Toor. Like some of Toor's art on the wall, the Kominas tackle racism, Islamophobia, American paranoia and stereotypes (the name of their latest album is, indeed, Stereotype). A fierce rock band in the classic punk vein, the Kominas's audience was flailing along with the band's energetic performance."
"A mini-retrospective of M.F. Husain — the celebrated and colorfully controversial Indian painter who died in London in 2011, at the age of 95 — runs through October 24 at Aicon Gallery in NoHo. Covering six decades in approximately 24 paintings, the show affords a rarely seen overview of India’s Picasso, with excellent examples from every decade of his wildly prolific oeuvre."
"Drawing a fine line between voyeurism and vigilance, Indian artist Abir Karmakar’s second solo exhibition “Uncanny Space” at Aicon Gallery continues with his preoccupation of seducing viewers to become surreptitious onlookers of his painted private spaces. Yet at the core of his presentation of empty bedrooms and intimate living areas lies the significance of invisibility. The nameless other, or the one who cannot be seen, lurks in the background, allowing the viewer to conjure upon these unseen figures his or her own human dimensions."
"Acknowledgement for octogenarian Rasheed Araeen’s contribution to Minimalism is long overdue. Marginalised and overshadowed for the most part by American stalwarts such as Sol
LeWitt, Carl Andre and Donald Judd, the pioneers of the movement during the 1960s, Araeen’s institutional recognition has only been recent."
"Overlooked amid all these accomplishments was Mr. Araeen’s art, a selection of which is at Aicon Gallery inhis first New York solo exhibition. Trained as a civil engineer, he became an artist after seeing Anthony Caro’s sculptures. His own early pieces combined Mr. Caro’s use of industrial materials with openwork structures adapted from architecture. In the early 1960s he developed a version of what would come to be called Minimalism before its introduction in New York by Donald Judd and others."
"THE DAILY PIC: I raved about the British Minimalism of Rasheed Araeenwhen it was on view last year in the Jewish Museum group show called “Other Primary Structured". Now Araeen has a solo at Aicon Gallery in New York; it includes today's Daily Pic, titled First Structure and conceived in 1966-67 (i.e., at the same moment when New York's Minimal art was coming together)."
"After Sheikh Hamdan bin Mohammed bin Rashid posted a picture of this beautiful work on social media, it quickly became the fair’s most photographed piece of art. The suspended black cube, laser-cut with Islamic patterns that cast shadows on the wall from a single light bulb within it, is a 2014 piece by Pakistani artist Agha and was exhibited by Aicon Gallery from New York. Throughout the event, streams of people gathered around it to catch it at the best angle."
"Aicon Gallery, a New York and London-based gallery that specialises in art from the Indian subcontinent is one of the 97 galleries bringing their art to Art Dubai next week. Interestingly, Harry Hutchison, the gallery director decided that as well as the four day fair, he would collaborate with a local gallery Empty 10 to put on a short exhibition preceding the fair. I find this a fascinating way to penetrate the local audience and so, ahead of the VIP opening tomorrow night, I caught up with him for a chat."
"Aicon Gallery is a contemporary art gallery specializing in emerging Indian and Pakistani artists. Formerly Gallery ArtsIndia, Aicon Gallery was one of the first platforms for Indian art in the United States. Today, the primary goal of the gallery is to foster dialogue between South Asian and Western art at their New York and London locations."
"The Aicon exhibition illuminates the astonishing fluidity with which Suri moves between worlds. "I like his drive, which goes in so many directions — writing, music, visual arts," says Salman Rushdie, the author with whom Suri has kindled an unlikely friendship. "And he's helped me to get a better understanding of a younger generation of Indian Americans."
"The show fuses Pakistani with Indian, Islam with Hinduism and North American with South Asian, without highlighting the major chasms separating these dichotomies in the Eastern world. The subtext of the works largely communicate with Suri’s music: both are compendiums of deep knowledge of pop culture and both American and South Asian."
"57 Great Jones is also just a block away from the Aicon Gallery, where as part of the lead-up to his first full-length solo album, Eat Pray Thug, Heems curated an art show of the same name, featuring desi artists like Ratna Gupta, Ranbir Kaleka and Abdullah MI Syed — as well as art he created in partnership with Chiraag Bhakta, aka Pardon My Hindi. As in his music, Heems’ visual art references borrow heavily from his north Indian family’s experience in the United States"
"Now, however, Suri has jumped into the (marginally) more serious business of curating his own gallery show: “Eat Pray Thug,” the same moniker he’s given his forthcoming solo album, which runs through March 10 at Aicon Gallery on Great Jones Street. The multimedia group show of artists with ties to India and Pakistan, including Suri himself, also features a parallel series of live events, including an appearance from Muslim punk band The Kominas on March 7."
“This show is really cool, we have American artists, Indian artists, Pakistani artists. It’s interesting to see it all together and how they interact,” Bhakta said. “Instead of putting us in an ‘Indian’ bucket, this show is trying to burst that bubble. That first layer of American culture is pretty special. We are not Indian, we are American. It’s cool to experiment with that and see what comes out of it.”
Featuring Roohi Ahmed, Michael Kempson, Ben Rak, Abdullah M. I. Syed, and Adeel uz Zafar
"The show is a collection of etchings and silkscreen prints that thrived on shared experiences of looking, and of semblance. As arbitrators and translators of their respective cultures, the artists, through their works, revealed a yearning for a kind of order. Collectively their works swayed between the creating and breaking of repetitive forms and grids."
"Aicon Gallery in downtown Manhattan currently has an excellent exhibition up,Readymade: Contemporary Art from Bangladesh. It’s the obscure object of my art desire: a summer show offering a take on materials and craft that ranges from the familiar to the utopian-exotic. That the show seems to stand in for real politics with an indignant view of the use and abuse of labor, activism, and the status of women in Bangladesh — and that it does all this while hinting that it’s just the tip of the sinking iceberg — make Readymade a must-see."
"The Bangladeshi contemporary art scene began to grow in the 1990s, twenty years after the country gained independence from Pakistan in 1971. Today, Dhaka burgeons with young talent, with new art venues sprouting up alongside established art spaces. The exhibition “Readymade” features nine exciting Bangladeshi artists who explore diverse social, political and economic issues in their country."
"Aicon Gallery’s first solo exhibition in New York of contemporary art from Bangladesh is off to a good start. Tilted “Readymade,” which consists of work by established and emerging artists compressed into a relatively short time frame that began after Bangladesh gained independence from Pakistan in 1971, displays an art scene edgy for its political content, talent and imagination."
"Adeela Suleman, resorting to the absurd and the bizarre, makes light of grim realities by toying with the subversive; she uses politically-inflected satire to probe the spectre of death that we continue to confront due to terrorism, militancy, target killing, vandalism, street crime and affiliated violence."
"Following in the tradition of miniature painting, these finely rendered enamel works continue Suleman’s theme of beheaded figures with a surreal and engaging undertone. Implications of cruelty, pointless mayhem, and the continuing aftermath of colonialism are implied through the nuanced narrative. Lush Victorian landscapes and colonial figures feature in a mash up of genres and styles that effectively combine different periods from the 13th century painting technique to the gold filigree porcelain borders of the 18th century and make for a lively contemplative space."
"Aicon Gallery is currently showcasing Tempered Branches, a solo exhibition of new works by G. R. Iranna. The work continues to build upon Iranna’s career-spanning investigation into how social frameworks and religious dogmas, traditionally viewed as net-cultural positives, either directly or indirectly serve to suppress freethought and organic growth, often with complex and disastrous consequences."
"Alternately playfully irreverent and hauntingly solemn, these sculptures all ultimately speak to the ongoing social and ecological crises that continue to unfold not only in increasingly commodifying consumer societies such as India and China but on a global scale."
"Similarities in approaches and content of this art with parallel situations elsewhere are such that the general resonance of conflict and change, vagueness and clarity, mix of Eastern and Western vocabulary, hybridity and mutation is easily identifiable. New generation artists are flexible and free from the weight of traditional art methodologies. Using renewed methods of thinking and addressing problems to create relevant art, they are creating a vocabulary that global audiences are also able to understand, and relate to."
"The London-based artist Saad Qureshi shows his latest mixed media works at Manhattan’s South Asian art hotspot, Aicon Gallery, until the end of this month. Although he is trying to adopt a more universal visual language, his work remains, like so many Pakistani artists, rooted in the rich cultural metaphors and latent violence of his country of origin."
"The exhibition explores the very essence of the dichotomy of the word Brut(e) through chance, experimentation, collaboration and real and imagined narratives while drawing on an obsession with the effects of history and geography on questions of performed identity and the construction of multiple contrasting ‘Others’."
"Abdullah M. I. Syed’s first solo exhibition at Aicon Gallery, New York, which was held from July 18th to September 7th 2013, takes his concerns with strained US-Pakistan relations to a new level of investigating Pakistani identity and self-image. Through various mediums Syed casts light on Pakistan’s precarious political position with a more nuanced and complex presentation of its culture and people."
"Syed takes his cues from both Western and Eastern vocabularies of art history and theory to re-contextualise and re-frame contemporary issues. The contents of the show may impact foreign audiences as a potent and exotic mix of Diaspora related anxieties but they emit a more measured resonance here."
"The varied pieces on display come together to put forward a cohesive commentary on these issues and how they transcend boundaries as well as how they impact US relations with predominantly Muslim countries, in this case Pakistan, where Syed is from. One piece that drew a significant amount of attention was a circular installation made of American dollars intricately cut into miniature guns, rifles, and military planes."
"Already, Abdullah M I Syed’s first major US exhibition generates plenty of mystique. Not only is it a rarity– an Australia-based Pakistani artist exploring Muslim male identity– but it’s also the narrative. “Brut-Nama: The Chronicles of Brut,” stems from Faberge’s popular fragrance, “The Essence of Man.” Syed will examine the essence of Brut, as a male ideal, as well as the arts and crafts tradition of “Art Brut,” or Outsider Art."
"Most of the seven sculptures by Adeela Suleman recently on view at Aicon Gallery (all works 2010) may be called reliefs. Crafted from hammered steel, the works rises slightly from the gallery walls, appearing abstract as they glisten with intricate detail. They are, in fact, elaboratley figurative: Birds, often flanking large plants, ornamentally proliferate, as do vases, drapery, and crowns. Suleman is Pakistani, and acknowledges that her art is about Pakistan, a nuclear state plagued by suicide bombers. But her work,with its traditional cultural imagery celebrating life, ironically disguising contemporary barbarism,also speaks to the violence that threatens life and civil society everywhere."