It was the year 2013, and sometime in October, when during a brainstorming session, the idea of Karachi Children’s Art Fest (KCAF) came into being. The idea had its root for a while in my head, especially since my brief time in USA for a training program, where I first got the chance what a real Museum looks like and the impact it can have. Since then, the feeling that something better needs to exist for kids has always been stuck in my head – in other words, the idea that I deserved something better as a kid never left me.
It was therefore in a sudden fit of excitement that KCAF was established. It was a collaboration of ArtChowk The Gallery, TBYU (my little initiative) and Spaces Gallery. In this country which is already tormented by tons of incidents of terrorism, violence – both ethnic and religious, lack of infrastructure, it comes as no surprise that we provide no spaces for kids to nurture their creative faculties. We have almost no Museums (the ones that we do have and what they do contribute is a topic for yet another day). In the absence of all this, how is it that we are to expect anything from the generations to come? KCAF therefore is a response to the lack of spaces. It is a platform to allow kids to connect with art and colors, and things which allow us to open our minds to new things and possibilities and be fascinated by it. KCAF 2014 was not a great hit, but it was a step – a very tiny one at that, but enough to tell us that this is a need, which we need to continue taking. With almost 5 thousand people attending the event over a course of two days, where everything was made free to the public, it was a venture that needs a lot of support still. So what does KCAF 2015 holds for the city? More on that soon.