The Dhaka Art Centre like Alliance Francaise, says AH Dhali Tomal, is a hub where culturally minded people, connected with paintings, films and photography come together to exchange views and ideas. At UODA he has been teaching printmaking since 2006. As an individual he went into fine arts. He was fascinated by clay toys, kites, embroidered fans. Conventional studies did not attract him as much as folk art. He was born in the village of Gafargaon, Mymensingh. Dolls and carts made of clay caught his interest. In school, his interest in drawing and painting exceeded that in Bangla, maths and other subjects. Later on, at Mymensingh, he studied at Zainul Shangraha Shala, around which the education centre developed. Students keen on arts went there twice a week and later on they went to art schools.
“Of course, books, and environment also motivated me to enter this line. I studied at the Khulna Art College, doing my graduation. This is affiliated to the Rajshahi University. I did my Masters from UODA –where I have been teaching for six years,” he says.
At a workshop called Rabindranama here at the Kibria Printing Workshop had 63 well-known participating artists. They all went in for etching. Among them the important artists were Rafiqun Nabi, Monirul Islam of Spain fame, Abul Baraq Alvi, Shahid Kabir, Hamiduzzaman Khan, Samarjit Rai Chowdhury. Their juniors like Dhali Al Mamoon, Dilara Begum Jolly worked there too like Trojans. Nisar Hussain, Fareha Zeba, Saidul Huq Juisse, also contributed their skills and imagination. Nisar Hussain, Shishir Bhattadharya, and Wakilur Rahman were not to be forgotten for their unusual insights and relentless work. Ranjit Das and Biren Shome added their vision too.
The Kibria Print Studio welcomes more than just working artists, adds Farzana Rahman, one of the main instructors. “Students, who wish to learn, who may not be of the Dhaka Art College or UODA come here too, if they are charmed by the magic of printmaking,” she says.
Is it not time-consuming to guide the learners with the tools? “It is a privilege to work with senior artists, like Kanak Champa Chakma, and Biren Shome.
Asked about the many methods of prints, Bobby says that the work may take a fair amount of time with the roller.
Print has four processes, Relief, Itaglio, Planography and finally the Silk Screen, she adds. In the Workshop Relief and Intaglio are taught, and all this can be done in the one machine that is there she says.
In the fairs, which took place thrice since the Kibria Print Studio began had Shishir Bahattacharya, Dhali Al Mamoom. Wakilur Rahman,Kazi Salauddin Ahmed (who won the award at the Asian Bienalle), Dilara Begum Jolly, and Tomal. Last time the fair was for three days and this time it was for five days. In 2012 it was for seven days, says the eager and dedicated printmaker. At a fairly early age she knows the ins and outs of printmaking. In the print-media she likes etching and aqua-tint, which she has been doing for eight years.