This neon work, “Dad” (2018), is by Rabiya Choudhry, a visual artist born in Glasgow in 1982 to Scottish and Pakistani parents. Choudhry puts her father’s name ‘Mazhar’ in lights, celebrating Glasgow’s Asian community and her father’s occupation as a shop owner.
“Mazhar is the name of my dad - a Pakistani immigrant who moved to Glasgow in the 1970s. His name means manifestation / phenomenon...I wanted to celebrate him and the many immigrants that came to Glasgow in the 70s to set up businesses and are still struggling to keep that going.”
Many South Asian people came to Britain to set up businesses; working day and night to support their families here and back home as well as contributing to society. The corner or local shops were and still are central to communities across the country. With shopkeepers providing essential groceries or clothing, good chat and support for their communities. These local shops are an invaluable part of British culture.
The works have been gifted to Glasgow Museums through the Contemporary Art Society’s Rapid Response Fund. The work will be displayed in GoMA following the lifting of lockdown restrictions.