Colonial Adventures I

Dawood, Shezad
Shezad Dawood works across film, textiles, print, painting and sculpture to explore how different systems of language, site and narrative can exist within and between these forms. His work often involves collaboration and is particularly concerned with acts of editing and re-staging. Cobra Lady, Colonial Adventures I and Spy Games, all 2019, emerged from Dawood’s research into book cover design and publishing as well as the physical architecture of Ferozson’s bookshop in Lahore. Until it closed its doors in 2017, Ferozson’s was the longest-running Urdu-language bookshop and publishing house in the world. The artist charts how changes in graphic design and iconography since Pakistan was established in 1947 reflect the shifting political situation and perception of the country. Each painting is inspired by a paperback book cover, remade at double the size. While their titles suggest a consonance with contemporary books and cinema from Europe, the US and the wider Middle East, together they celebrate an aesthetic particular to graphic design histories within Pakistan and to the artist’s own practice.
  • Artwork Details: 32 x 21cm
  • Edition:
  • Material description: Oil, acrylic and textile collage on canvas
  • Credit line: © the artist. Image courtesy of the artist and Jhaveri Contemporary
  • Theme:
  • Medium: Painting
  • Accession number: ACC25/2020



The Arts Council Collection is the UK's most widely seen collection of modern and contemporary art.

With more than 8,000 works by over 2,000 artists, it can be seen in exhibitions and public displays across the country and beyond. This website offers unprecedented access to the Collection, and information about each work can be found on this site.