LAHORE    -   The British Council and Lahore Bien­nale Foundation (LBF) have partnered to launch the Lahore Biennale Founda­tion Virtual Museum project at the Na­tional College of Arts. The virtual mu­seum is a digital platform for artists, academics and creative practitioners to re-examine our shared cultural lan­guage and artistic legacy. The launch event was attended by senior members of the arts community as well as rep­resentatives from the British Council and the British High Commission. The project is part of the British Council’s Pakistan-UK Season: New Perspectives programme to mark the 75th anniver­sary of Pakistan. 

The project invited a diverse group of curators, collaborators and artists across the board to respond and con­tribute to 75 years of Pakistan’s rich, multifaceted history and culture post-independence. The aim is to facilitate broader socio-cultural changes in public interaction which has led to the need of providing people with a virtual space to reconnect with their cultural heritage. The project also questions the role of the “traditional forms of mu­seum making” and builds on the global reality of virtual connectivity despite physical borders, making cyberspace an ideal platform for local and global conversations - transcending boundar­ies by making knowledge production an accessible and open-ended reality. The LBF’s Virtual Museum engages in new forms of museum making, over­comes physical boundaries, and func­tions as an enduring online resource. 

Kate Joyce, Business Director Cultur­al Engagement, British Council South Asia, said: “The Virtual Museum is an innovative way to use art and heritage in community building in an inclu­sive and impactful way. This formed part of our programme of activity for Pakistan/UK: New Perspectives pro­gramme. I look forward to many young artists and curators contributing to this space and meaningfully sharing ideas that pave the way for an inclusive and sustainable future. The tragic recent events in Pakistan with the floods un­derline the importance of working to­gether to tackle global challenges.”

The curators and themes for the proj­ect are Dastaan-I-Urdu, curated by Ali Usman Qasmi (Co Curator: Mahmood Ul Hasan); The Body and Beyond: Wom­en’s Movements in Pakistan, curated by Farida Batool; Taos Chaman - Post-Colonial Identity in Artistic Practices in South Asia, curated by Masooma Syed; Manduva: Exploring What We Won’t Like to Call ‘Lollywood’, curated by Sar­mad Sultan Khoosat; Ilm-e-Mosiqui: Classical Legacies, Folk Music and Con­temporary Classics, curated by Sarah Zaman and Architecture through Space and Time: Conversations with the first generation of Pakistani Architects, cu­rated by Tanvir Hasan. All these themes respond to a different aspect of our country’s shared history, cultural lan­guage and artistic legacy.