Basharat Bashir

Problem with Art!

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Our world is full of diverse art forms and art styles. As we spend some time looking into art world we realize how each work of art is a unique masterpiece in itself. We may be attracted to certain style of art but we, do not refuse to appreciate other styles either. An art work is not an object brought forth to be judged for its significance, or to determine the skill of artist behind it. Art in itself is a memory or a thought that an artist wants to share with viewers, and whatever is presented by the artist is all he wanted to say. We should not try to pamper in any argument regarding the aspects it has or hasn’t presented as we see them.

There is a problem with art and it’s not new, it has been alongside since humans started to make art. The problem is ‘if’. IF only her face was more lit the painting would have been a masterpiece, If you used red instead of blue, only if the forms were more spherical it would have been fascinating….,. There is also ‘Why’ and ‘How’ but they do not pose much pain to the artist.

An artwork that an artist exhibits for its viewers is always complete piece of art. Artist never invites you to correct his mistakes. Artist through his paintings shares his world with others no matter how bizarre or beautiful, we have no authority to override his perspective. It’s not only the common audience that tries to prove how scarce knowledge artist holds but, even renowned art critics also show great deal of enthusiasm  to invade artists conviction. Artists have in many cases suffered from the hands of art critics and audience altogether who failed or deliberately rejected some great pieces of art for the sake of their own pre determined conscience.  Art critics who could not find any connection with the style or presentation of a certain artist rejected him and his art and left him wandering for life. Many great artists of the recent past whom we now admire for their creativity have suffered a lot and many were forced to live a miserable life. There are many artists who out of poverty committed suicide only because established system rejected them and left them in desolation.

One cannot question a person for what he had dreamt last night. If in his dream he saw cat’s flying like butterflies or an elephant with a piggy nose no one will question his vision. Same goes with an art work we may not find his piece to our liking but we cannot reject his creation. He shares with us his perception of a certain subject we can share ours and recollect the differences. Being an art critic or audience is an important position that can affect an artist’s life. If one couldn’t make a connection with certain piece of art he should not mess up an artist’s life by going out blabbering bad things about the artist, if not he may be someone else finds that same piece of art fascinating. Art plays an important role in building our society so; we should not look down on artists as people living on our mercy. Artists give us special ways of perceiving our world we should at least thank them for that. We can appreciate an artist if we cannot afford to buy his art.

Art and Healthcare

Apart for aesthetic value, our lives and the world we live in is greatly affected and influenced by art. Different people experience art in different ways; some may get attracted by the beauty of an art work while others may engage themselves in experimenting whole new window of thoughts. An artwork has a profound capability to engage people in one or the other way regardless of age, gender or ethnicity. When we visit a hospital or any healthcare centre as a patient or a visitor we are surrounded by blank walls.  The impression of hospital is cold, and to add up its gloomy atmosphere we have large dead blank walls. And if we hung a piece of art or have a mural on that blank wall it  can serve as a therapeutic and healing tool and will reduce the loneliness and provide opportunities for patients, visitors and the staff for self-expression and offer a sense of calm.

The studies and the findings of implementation of art in hospitals have established a direct connection between Arts and the Healthcare. In many countries including USA,  Arts in Healthcare has become diverse, multidisciplinary field dedicated to uplifting and taking the healthcare experience to the next level by connecting people through art and its benefits to patients, their families, and the health workers altogether. Art is also beneficial to every person’s mental health, patient or not. Studies found a direct and strong link between the content of images that art offers and the brain’s reaction to pain, stress, and anxiety.

Arts in healthcare programs and creative arts therapies have been applied to a vast array of health issues, including: Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD), Autism and overall mental health, chronic illnesses, Alzheimer’s disease and Dementia, Neurological disorders and brain injuries, premature infant births as well as Physical disabilities. In conclusion, art is beneficial to a person’s overall health condition, including medication outcomes, treatment compliance and quality of life. The concept of using the arts in healing has gained more attention, and more articles and reviews about the trend are being published in journals and academic periodicals. Many of which explored and confirmed the positive effects of arts on patients and their families, as well as health workers, when exposed to different art media.

 Dina Nath Walli

Artist and art work

Born in 1908 Dina Nath Walli , was a renowned water colour artist and poet from Srinagar city of Kashmir valley. He is also known by his pen name as Almast Kashmiri. He was the part of the modern art movement in the state of Jammu and Kashmir and was known for painting everyday scenes of Kashmir.

Pure aura of the beauty of Kashmir along with his sublime handling of watercolor is reflected in his paintings. His watercolor paintings represent simple scenes of everyday life of Kashmir with an amazing touch of creativity.

Dina Nath Wali spent his childhood in Kashmir and in 1930 he moved to Calcutta, where he learned various forms of art under the guidance of Percy Brown, principal of the Government College of Art & Craft at the University of Calcutta. In 1936, he returned to Srinagar and concentrated on landscape painting mostly in watercolor.  He was aware of various forms of modern art especially Salvador Dalí’s surrealism, Pablo Picasso’s Cubism, Expressionism, Impressionism, Pop art and Abstract art. His paintings could be good examples of Impressionism; they are unique in their own way.

Under his pen name of Almast Kashmiri, his “accent on realistic art or people’s poetry”, is best seen in his two collections of his poetry, Bala Yapair (This side of Mountains, 1955) and Sahaavukh Posh (Desert Flowers, 1981).

Here are few watercolor paintings of Dina Nath Walli:­


One Response to Problem with Art!

  1. Bernard Honig August 12, 2020 at 8:32 pm

    For Mr Basharat Bashir,

    I read your article concerning health Art and healthcare in hospitals with great interest. Maybe the basic idea of our association could be of interest to you. We make photos of original artworks of our members and then have reproductions made on the basis of these photos. The technical procedure can ofcourse be modified or adapted. Our aim was to reduce costs to a minimum and thus allow us to make a higher number of reproductions in order to reach hallways and rooms far away from the entrance or show rooms. Here is our site (English text on bottom of page)
    If you have any interest, questions or whatever, you can contact me by email [email protected] or [email protected]


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