A Day in Lahore

Badshahi Mosque

Lahore (Urdu: لاہور, Punjabi: لہور; pronounced [laːˈɦɔːr]) is the capital of the Pakistani province of Punjab and the second largest city in Pakistan, The city lies along the Ravi River, situated approximately 25 kilometres (16 mi) from the Wagah border crossing and is 32 kilometres (20 mi) from the Indian city of Amritsar.
Historically, Lahore has been a center of cultural heritage for many civilizations. It successively served as regional capital of the empires of the Shahi kingdoms in the 11th century, the Ghaznavids in the 12th century, the Ghurid State in the 12th and 13th century, the Mughal Empire in the 16th century, the Sikh expansion in the early 19th century, and it was the capital of the Punjab region under the British Raj in the mid 19th and early 20th century. The traditional capital of Punjab for a thousand years, Lahore was the cultural center of the northern part of the subcontinent which extends from the eastern banks of the Indus River to New Delhi. Mughal structures such as the Badshahi Mosque, the Lahore Fort, Shalimar Gardens, and the mausolea of Jehangir and Nur Jehan are popular tourist attractions for the city. Lahore is also home to many British colonial structures built in the Mughal-Gothic style, such as the Lahore High Court, the General Post Office, Lahore Museum and many older universities including the University of the Punjab. The Lahore Zoo, world's third oldest zoo, is also situated here.
Lahore is also referred to as the cultural heart of Punjab as it hosts most of the arts, cuisine, festivals, film making, music, gardening and intelligentsia of the country. Lahore is also known for its affiliation with poets and artists; it has the largest number of educational institutions in Punjab and some of the finest gardens in the continent.

Samadhi Ranjit Singh


National College of Arts

One World News, 12.04.09. "Two hundred students and special guests attended the lecture on Belgian art given by Mariano Akerman at the National College of Arts in Lahore. The event was opened by a moving welcome from Prof. Naazish Ata-Ullah and the remarks of Belgian Ambassador Hans Kint. During the lecture, Mariano Akerman dealt with the presence of mimesis (imitation) and fantasy in Belgian imagery and considered their interplay from the fifteenth century up to the present. The mimetic approach to reality was illustrated by the work of artists such as Jan van Eyck, Rogier de la Pasture, Teniers, Rubens, Van Dyck and Constantin Meunier. Imagination had its representatives in the work of Hieronymus Bosch, Joris Hoefnagel, Pieter Brueghel the Elder, James Ensor, René Magritte and Jean-Michel Folon. The lecturer analyzed the mechanisms which operate in each approach. He demonstrated that considerable symbolism accompanies realistic imagery and that, far from being capricious or irrational, the art of imagination encapsulates its own truth. Because of his educational contribution to Pakistan, Mariano Akerman was granted with the Molka-Sajjad Prize, which he received from the Authorities of the National College of Arts in Lahore yesterday."

Akerman, Belgian Species, digital collage, April 2009

« Monsieur Mariano Akerman est un historien d'art qui sait partager sa passion. À l'occasion d'une conférence sur l'art belge donnée au National College of Arts de Lahore, il a montré combien il maîtrise parfaitement son sujet, "tressant" habilement les mises en évidence de l'oscillation et de l'imbrication des concepts de mimesis et de fantaisie, selon les perspectives historiques et spatiales qui caractérisent la peinture belge. » - Christian Adam de Villiers, Directeur, Alliance Française de Lahore

Limbourg Brothers, "January", Les Très Riches Heures du duc de Berry, c. 1413-16. Musée Condé, Chantilly

Jan van Eyck, "Adam", Mystique Lamb Altarpiece, 1432. Cathedral Saint-Bavon, Ghent

Peter Paul Rubens, Saturn devouring one of his sons, 1636. Museo del Prado, Madrid

Émile Claus, The Girl with the Ducks, c. 1883

James Ensor, Squeletons willing to warm themselves up, 1889

René Magritte, The Taste of Tears, 1948. Oil, 60 x 50 cm.

Jean-Michel Folon, Yes to Thought, watercolor

A Day in Lahore
Photographs by Mariano Akerman

Mughal Architecture, Badshahi Mosque, 1673


Cooco's Café


Street fountain




Mausoleum of the Sikh Emperor Maharaja Ranjit Singh

The Path of Life

Buddah's bell and carved bracket

Carved bracket

A composite motif: Alimentary chain

National College of Arts