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In Search of Gold art exhibition comes to Valentines Mansion, Ilford

PUBLISHED: 19:18 25 August 2017

The exhibition can be viewed on Sundays and Tuesdays in September. Picture: Valentines Mansion

The exhibition can be viewed on Sundays and Tuesdays in September. Picture: Valentines Mansion

Valentines Mansion

An exhibition exploring the human condition and concepts of beauty, acceptance and adaptation is being shown at Valentines Mansion in September.

Artist Eliyah Qureshi drawing. Picture: Valentines Mansion Artist Eliyah Qureshi drawing. Picture: Valentines Mansion

In Search of Gold is a collection by Barkingside artist Eliyah Qureshi.

Through black ink pen and gold paint she captures beauty ideals and her own life experiences of battling a terminal illness.

Bees are a prominent feature of her work and the artist looks into the vulnerability and power of the insect as well as praising the honey they produce which she said has aided her healthy recovery.

The exhibition at Emerson Road, Ilford, is a “testament to survival” and Eliyah said her resilience exists in every piece she makes.

“Blending insects into my art symbolises my attempt to normalise what is not accepted in mainstream society,” she said.

“It is representative of what we fear, or misunderstand and therefore reject.”

Better able to communicate to the world though art, Eliyah said she likes to pry open the taboo and look at the idea of metamorphosis.

“I used pen and ink because it helps me instantly capture and preserve the emotion I felt in that moment.

“When painting, my strength melts away from my fingertips and imbues itself in the gold and ink of my work.

“I make art to show my soul I am listening, art is what defines me – I talk in paint and ink, not vowels and consonants.”

The artist believes that everybody is searching in life, whether it be for love, wealth or a cure.

Her work represents the human desire to find a sanctuary that they recognise as home.

“At times I find myself desperately searching for hope and comfort, almost as one might search for gold, but what we seek is most often elusive.

“My paintings depict my struggle, my search, my madness - my story as viewed from my lens.”

Between September 3 and 26, Eliyah will also be holding a series of events in tandem with her exhibition.

From children’s drawing workshops to meet the artist sessions, there are lots of creative sessions to get stuck into.

For more information visit valentinesmansion.com

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