With schools closed, Kandahar girls do art at home


TWO Kandahari girls turned their home into a painting and drawing center following the closure of the girls’ educational centers in Kandahar city.

The girls, who are sisters, turned one of the rooms in their house into a painting and drawing center, and from this room they are promoting the art of painting and drawing.

They said they don’t want their last few years’ struggles to be forgotten.

The girls urged the Islamic Emirate to reopen educational centers for girls. “I ask the Islamic Emirate to reopen all the educational institutions so that all girls can go and learn their lessons,” said Shugofa Amiri, a painter.

“They have given us 10 to 12 rules which are very strict. They told us that you should not come without Mahram,” said Masoma Amiri, a painter.

The sisters have learned the art of painting and drawing in one of the art centers in Kandahar’s city and are trying to display their products. Now this art center is closed.

Meanwhile, the Kandahar Department of Information and Culture said that work has begun on providing facilities for the female students.

“There is also a procedure for girls’ education. The centers are allowed to teach them based on the Islamic regulations,” said Abdul Shukur Spand, the Art and Culture Director of Kandahar.

On the other hand, painters in Kandahar called on the Islamic Emirate to spare no efforts in providing facilities for them.

“A large number of male and female students were coming here in order to learn drawing and painting skills,” said Amanullah Durakhshan, a teacher of fine arts at a center in Kandahar.

In the last three months, most of the girls’ training centers were closed in the capital and other provinces, but in recent weeks some provinces have provided education for girls.

Several young Afghan photographers, painters, and calligraphers launched a program to display artwork in Kabul on Monday to spread hope and inspiration amid the chaotic situation in the country.

The exhibit was named the “generation of hope,” and participants said they have witnessed both joyful and sad days.

One of these young people said no problem can overcome them or impede the progress of the country, and that they will stand strong in defending their country.

“We will stand and we will resist, we will work for our future and for our country so that other young people are encouraged,” said Natasha Hakimi, one of the photographers.

“We love this art, and we will continue until the end,” said cameraman Elham Rostami.

The program included painting, drawing and calligraphy.

Reading poems, playing music hosting a photo exhibit were part of the program.

“We love when people come and visit our exhibition and find hope from it,” said Mohammad Rafi Malek, a photographer.

Decades of war and violence have significantly impacted every aspect of life in Afghanistan.

However, cultural traditions have been maintained and Afghans have kept alive the practice of various arts, both to express the voice of the people for peace and as a means of self-therapy.

TOLOnews reporter Tamim Hamid talked to two young Afghans engaged in the arts.

Sami Faqiri is a calligrapher and artist who teaches his profession to students in an art center.

“We ask them to draw colorful birds, to include nature and Afghanistan’s cultural and historical monuments. In this way we want to help them focus on a beautiful idea or painting,” said Sami Faqiri, a calligrapher and artist.

Zubair Ahmad, 18, is a 12th-grade student and says it is his dream to practice calligraphy professionally. “An artist or a calligrapher needs security to work in a peaceful manner,” said Zubair Ahmad.

“I don’t like to paint killings and other things like that, I love to paint nature,” said Mahboba, a student. Dunya, 9, is also learning to paint.

“I want to be a good calligrapher and artist, I want to write for others, we need peace,” said Dunya.

Every day, in the major cities of the country, especially in Kabul, you come across paintings and messages on the city walls that reflect the war and violence in the country.

Educators hope that a young generation of painters and calligraphers will be able to express their vision in the future through these mediums.—Tolonews


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