Fine Art Focus: Waqas Khan

by Grace Bonney

When I was younger, I was obsessed with spirographs. They were the sort of artistic activity that felt perfect for an only child — you could spend hours making beautiful artwork and didn’t need a group of friends or siblings to make them happen, or to have fun. As I got older, I learned to appreciate those sorts of small, repetitive details in artwork and the amount of hard work and dedication that goes in to making them. And when artists find a way to use those tiny, determined dashes and lines to create something powerful, I’m in awe. Artist Waqas Khan of Pakistan is one of those artists, and I’m so excited to share more of his work here today.

Born in Akhtarabad, Pakistan, Waqas went on to study at the National College of Arts in Lahore, focusing on printmaking and miniature painting. Both disciplines require such intense focus and attention to detail that it’s no wonder Waqas went on to become revered for his artwork celebrating small, detailed marks. Waqas often finds inspiration in the religion and culture of Sufi, Muslim and Hindu people and there is an almost meditative quality in both the production and viewing of his work. Read on below (and be sure to check out the video interview!) to learn more about Waqas and his work. xo, grace

Artist: Waqas Khan
About: Waqas was born in Akhtarabad, Pakistan in 1982. He studied at the National College of Arts in Lahore in Printmaking and Miniature painting.
Work: Waqas’ work has been shown in galleries and museums across the globe and was purchased for the permanent collections of the British Museum and the Victoria and Albert Museum and the Kiran Nadar Museum of Art. Inspired by by Sufi, Muslim and Hindu traditions and religious scripture, Waqas’ work focuses on small and delicate dots, marks and lines. Reminiscent of spirograph styles, Waqas’ art is incredibly detailed up close, but has sweeping, large-scale impact as well.
More: You can read more about Waqas’ art here, here, here and here.

All artwork (c) Waqas Khan. Portait by Tamara Rametsteiner for Galerie Krinzinger. Artwork images via Sabrina Amrani Gallery and Artsy


Waqas Khan: detail from The text in continuum, 2015.


Suggested For You


  • These are fantastic! I’d love to see these in person. The Spirograph is a huge influence in my work as well. There are certain childhood toys that never go out of style.