MA (Hons.), in Visual Art, 2005 National College of Arts, Lahore
Aqeel Solangi was born in Ranipur, Sindh. He started his career by working as a sign and cinema board painter with Mehboob Painters in Khairpur. During this apprenticeship he also joined extensive art courses at a renowned artist's (Mussarat Mirza) studio in Sukkur, Sindh. He completed his BFA with Honors in 2003 and MA (Hons) Visual Art in 2005, both from the National College of Arts, Lahore.
Aqeel was the recipient of NCA/Charles Wallace Pakistan Trust Art Bursary for the Prince’s School of Traditional Arts, London in 2006. Since then, he has been teaching at the National College of Arts’ Rawalpindi Campus as an Assistant Professor. He has participated in many exhibitions across the country as well as abroad. His works are in the permanent collection of several galleries nationally and internationally, including the U.K, U.S.A, Canada, U.A.E and India.
One of the most creative artists this country has ever produced, Aqeel Solangi believes in making mistakes and gaining experiences from them, and this attitude has led him towards success. Aqeel’s work, while intentionally lacks in representation, is rich in the suggestion of a land or seascape. He achieves this by applying a gradation from dark to light as the painting moves from the bottom of the canvas towards the top. The colours he uses in each individual painting are harmonious, often belonging to the same range of hues.
Aqeel Solangi's work is about depth, and reminiscence. He paints his memories, and evokes feelings through his art. His paintings seem to have a timelessness associated with them, as if the artist does not want to focus on the details of a place but rather how it makes a person feel.
He paints in layers, using gestural strokes to create a base on top of which he applies thick coats of oil paint. He sometimes scrapes layers away and repaints them as well, leaving behind a memory or a hint of something that was taken away from the canvas.
“Time surrounds our existence and influences it in a myriad of ways. From the depths of unconscious ticking, it lurks in the psychedelic experience and links us to the happenings of everyday life with strange memories and deep feeling of Déjà vu.”