Imran Qureshi is a significant figure in the artistic movement called 'Neo Miniaturism' that originated in Lahore, and also teaches miniature painting at the National College of Arts in the city. Trained in the traditional miniature painting styles and techniques, the artist pushes the boundaries of this art form to accomodate contemporary contexts, and is known for influencing a wave of younger practitioners in this field. Qureshi’s works propose a new aesthetic in miniature painting that involves blending traditional styles with postmodern materials and innovations, and the present lot is a fine example of this union in his work.
This finely detailed painting appears as an open page of an illustrated book. The left hand side of the painting depicts the pattern for a collarless shirt as well as the final garment based on this pattern, laboriously stitched by the darzi or tailor depicted on the right. Through the miniature format, Qureshi manages to intricately depict the tailor's meticulous, step-by-step process, alluding to the precision with which he measures, cuts and sews his creations. The image of the darzi’s scissors in Dedicated To will later become the primary motif and subject of the artist's Easy Cutting series of paintings. This early work may be read as a representation of contemporary Pakistan, marked by the displacement of traditional roles like the darzi, and the constant struggle to retain identities amidst the turmoil of a sociopolitically fractured nation. Dedicated To is in some ways a tribute to the artistry and dedication of the humble tailor, his life carefully rendered in Qureshi’s fine hand.
Over the last decade, Qureshi's work has won the artist international acclaim. Solo exhibitions of his work have been held at the National Cathedra, Washington DC, in 2018; Museo Civico, San Gimignano, and the Barbican, London, in 2016; Eli and Edyth Broad Art Museum, East Lansing, and the Aga Khan Museum, Toronto, in 2014; and Museo d''Arte Contemporanea Roma (MACRO), Rome, in 2013. In 2013, he was also commissioned to create a site-specific work for the Roof Garden of the Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York and was recognised as the Deutsche Bank Artist of the Year. His works are part of the permanent collections of major institutions around the world, including the Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York, the Victoria and Albert Museum, London, and the Kiran Nadar Museum of Art, New Delhi.