A solo show by artist R. M. Naeem curated by Muhammad Zeeshan recently unveiled in Karachi.
In this exhibition, R.M. Naeem selects few of his earlier works and repaints the same concepts and ideas with a new voice and new perspective that depicts existing dogma.
His work showcases portraits and figurative images in various situations highlighting the emotional turmoil and upheaval. The narrative dwells on solitude and transcendent emotions that are intrinsic to human nature. Most of his images showcase a woman form with closed eye, suggesting seclusion and sealed expression. The world around his characters is oblivious yet powerful enough to have a great impact on them. The idea of dreamlike awakening with joy and peace emerges as key messages in his work. The circumstances seem to be overpowering the women’s emotions, be it pure joy, utter sadness or loneliness.
Some of his work is suggestive of hidden and concealed sentiments that have been beautifully depicted through the moods created. It shows the feelings and conversations, their personal universes that shout for attention.
As per Quddus Mirza, “Like a magician, who has the ability to transform a piece of fabric into a pigeon, a stick into a garland of flowers, a sack of cotton into a wooden box, and a hat into hare – right in front of his audience, R. M. Naeem also possesses the command to convert a bit of acrylic paint into a young girl, a male figure, an article of furniture, a horse, some clouds, and objects made of stainless steel (so much so that one can spot reflections captured in the metallic surface of these items)."
Naeem is known for his inspiring and informative teaching style. Upon completing his BFA in 1993 as a distinction student at the National College of Arts Lahore, he subsequently held the position of assistant professor at his alma mater. Over the years, he has held many solo shows both in Pakistan and abroad and curated various important shows. In addition his work has been exhibited in numerous important group shows nationally and internationally, including The Asian Art Biennale Dhaka Bangladesh, The International Artists' Biennale Iran, The Pyeongtack International Art Festival Lake Museum Korea, Art Expo Malaysia 2010, Slick Art Fair Paris 2010 France and in 2011 AAF Affordable Art Fair Singapore, 2012 Art Melbourne, Australia. Other nations that have shown his work various times are India, Oman, Bahrain, Hong Kong, Singapore, UAE, USA, China, UK, Norway, Srilanka and Canada.
As an avid participant of art residencies, he has attended various art camps and residencies abroad over the course of his career. He has also conducted various art counseling workshops. Since 1994 he has been promoting art through art education at his studio STUDIO RM. In 2008 he initiated the Studio RM (International) Residency programme in Lahore.
RM Naeem’s work has garnered several scholarships, awards and prizes in Pakistan, including the National Award of Excellence in 2003. His work can be seen in various private and official collections and has been featured in both local and international art publications.