pakistan
Monday Jun 20 2022
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Pakistani, British designers create costumes to celebrate diversity, culture

KARACHI: To mark the 75th anniversary of Pakistan, the British Council recently partnered with PoliNations during the Pakistan-UK New Perspectives Season and came up with a brilliant yet artistic idea to celebrate the diversity and culture of Pakistan. 

The partnership sought to create an artistic response to the themes of PoliNations, which included celebrating diversity and the cross-pollination of culture and exploring the influence of journeys along the silk road and the history of tea.

Created and produced by Trigger Collective, PoliNations is part of the UK-wide UNBOXED: Creativity in the UK. This project will culminate in the Birmingham 2022 Festival and will be open to all through free events across multiple art forms. 

In an event that took place on June 18 (Saturday), PoliNations’ costume designer Joey A Frenette, in collaboration with Pakistan-based designers Yousuf Bashir Qureshi and Riffat Aliani, showcased their work at The PoliNations Pakistan Costume Show at the Commune Artist Colony.

Director of Arts, British Council Pakistan Laila Jamil (L), designer Riffat Aliani, Yousuf Bashir Qureshi and British designer Joey A Frenette. — British Council Pakistan
Director of Arts, British Council Pakistan Laila Jamil (L), designer Riffat Aliani, Yousuf Bashir Qureshi and British designer Joey A Frenette. — British Council Pakistan 

Frenette travelled to Pakistan to design and create costumes influenced by the journey of tea, for special performances as part of the PoliNations programme in Birmingham in 2022. 

During the event, sitar player Rakae Jamil, who has been commissioned to write and record two new compositions responding to the themes surrounding tea and the tulip, also gave a soulful performance.

PoliNations Creative Director and Artistic Director of Trigger, Angie Bual said: “We’re so excited by the creative opportunity and collaboration this partnership provides. Exploring, celebrating and learning from the diversity and creativity across our cultures is at the heart of what PoliNations is — so being part of this season and collaborating with such talented Pakistan-based creatives through the programme is a really exciting opportunity for us.”

Laila Jamil, Director of Arts, British Council Pakistan said: “The British Council is very pleased to have enabled this cultural exchange programme between the UK and Pakistani artists. It is exciting to have collaborative projects for fashion and music during the PK-UK Season. This is a great programme for learning and future collaboration in the arts.”

After this event, the costumes will be transported to Birmingham to be showcased in a spectacular fashion by renowned dancers for a special series of performances at the festival.