Anwar Jalal Shemza (1928–85) moved to London in 1956, leaving an established career as a writer and painter in Lahore, Pakistan. His last series of work directly related to notions of belonging in the Pakistani diaspora.
In Britain, Shemza abandoned his illustrative and figurative approach and developed vigorous compositions that fused calligraphy and aspects of Islamic architecture with Western abstraction. He repeatedly revisited subjects, including the walls and gates of Lahore, the Arabic letter ‘Meem’, and plant roots.
Curated by Leyla Fakhr and Carmen Juliá.