MFA Sculpture Portfolio Critique

This video provides a critique of an MFA art school portfolio, starting with an overview of the portfolio, followed by critiques for each individual artwork.

Topics discussed include aspects of the entire portfolio and if artworks are working well, and recommends concrete strategies for how to make progress.

Critique led by Art Prof Clara Lieu, portfolio by Anam Rani.

Featured Artist

Anam Rani

“I was raised in Faisalabad and Lahore, Pakistan. I graduated from National College of Arts, Lahore in 2015 with distinction in Textile Design. I have exhibited in group shows as well as solo shows.

I have been teaching Art and Design to high school and elementary school kids since 2017. I want to pursue an MFA because I love teaching and I would love to do that for later in my life as well and that is why I need an MFA to teach at a College or University. Besides, I think it makes a huge difference when you have a degree in ‘studio practice,’ like I struggle a lot to get a validation as an ‘artist.’

I have always been interested in exploring how violent, suppressed and radical society affects an individual who is distant from the place where it occurs.

I absorb and translate what I see and experience within my environment into my ‘own language’ mostly using sculpture. It’s a theme of destruction, loss and catastrophe, and of the persistence of the memory I explore through my work.

I transformed materials and objects to make them appear as if they had been found like shards or celestial bodies, giving them an air of mystery, like relics of the future and unfortunate events of the past.

Here elements like 3-dimensional stitches, gauze, bandages, transparency, text and fragments carry a strong symbolism of loss, pain and suffering.

These sculptures speak in metaphor true to me yet it’s not based upon languages. It’s based upon human reaction and response. For me it’s a combination of the past and future, captivated and suspended in a resistance against erosion.

It’s about abstract documentation of the experience of living in a fragile, bipolar, and translucent and saturated culture of suppression, violence, where the sole purpose of the state as well as people like me is ‘security.’

The diluted, abstract forms and drawings are suggestive of my experience of trauma and tragedy.

In my collages encased in resin create a surreal three dimensional landscape frozen in time. A botanical drawing in space that is animate and alive. A freezing of culture, of dynamism, of change. Like a movie that doesn’t move.

Layering thus becomes a symbolic device – a way to deconstruct the systems through which energies flow and provide critical considerations of the ways different realms interact.”

Anam Rani

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Art Prof Clara Lieu
Prof Lieu & Tatiana Florival