AAN Collection Hong Kong, China

Believed to be the largest and most comprehensive collection of Pakistan visual art to date, the AAN collection is a private collection of Asian art primarily focussed on Pakistani Modern & Contemporary art. The collection consists of works ranging from 3rd Century Gandhara to cutting-edge contemporary artworks. The title of the collection, ‘AAN’, is derived from an Urdu word (Aan) and literally means both ‘honour’ as well as ‘a moment’. The title also fits in well with the acronym of the collectors names. The word ‘AAN’ perfectly describes the spirit behind the collection, on multiple levels. The collection is an attempt to honour the rich tradition, creativity and ingenuity of Pakistani artists and the collectors are honoured to be the trustees of this most comprehensive collection of its time. Above all, with contemporary art at its core, it is an attempt to capture the specific ‘moments’ of history within which these artworks exist. What began with an impulsive purchase of an artwork in 1994 became a lifelong passion for the collectors. There are sculptures, works on paper and canvas, photographic works, video installations, light boxes and other new media works in this collection. The largest work is ‘Desperately Seeking Paradise’ by Rashid Rana, a cubic sculpture which reaches over ten feet in height, while the smallest works are Mughal miniatures painted on ivory as well as contemporary miniatures by Ahsan Jamal which are just three inches in diameter. According to the collectors, “What makes it such a unique as well as robust collection is that the works have been collected because we loved them and with a vision to capture the art of those before us as well as of those artists who live and work in this time. A snapshot of the time we exist in as well as a nod to our past.”