You will be pleased to note that at the Dhaka Art Summit, last week, the panel discussion that I was moderating on the connections between Pakistani art and Bangladeshi art, pre1971 until now,it became quite a PR event for BNU, and UMISAA (UNESCO Madanjeet Singh Institute for South Asian Art, Lahore)
This came about because Farooq Subhan (Member of The advisory board of South Asia Foundation, Bangladesh) was on the panel with me, together with our two star Bangladeshi SVAD graduates,, Ayesha Sultana and Shimul Saha. Both are doing very well, Ayesha won the Samdani Art Award two years ago at the Summit, and Shimul was among the nominees this year.
Farooq commenced his talk by mentioning the UMISAA scholarships at BNU, and how successful the program was in bringing together students from all over South Asia to Lahore but specifically Bangladeshi students.
Both Ayesha and Shimul spoke very eloquently about what it had meant to be in Lahore, their experience at SVAD, and their professional development. Shimul spoke about how he had managed to travel in Pakistan, Mohenjodaro, Harrapa and the mountain areas.Recounted some funny instances about his hostel life and so on.
After the session which was people came up to me to ask about BNU-UMISAA programs which was heartening.
Additionally, Ayesha Sultana had a full solo project as part of the Art Summit which was an honor for such a young artist.
I forgot to mention that 3 of our graduates UMISAA from Bhutan were also at the Dhaka Art Summit. They were doing a children's workshop under the banner of the Art Organization VAST from Bhutan. They were totally surprised and delighted to meet me and of course shared their project with me apart from coming to the panel discussion Chonay our first batch graduate met up with Ayesha also from that first SVAD batch. She is a mother now she informed me!
Prof Salima Hashmi
SAF Pakistan Chairperson
Director of UMISAA