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House of kal Karachi

With Zubaan Books, Veera Rustomji, Vera Ryser, The Many Headed Hydra, Tehreem Mela, Suza Husse, SS Beben, Shahana Rajani & Zahra Malkani, Sandev Handy, Sadia Khatri, Sophia Balagamwala, Sehan Khanna, Sophia-Layla Afsar, Seher Naveed, Sajan Kumar, radio kal, Omer Wasim, Jeanne Penjan Lassus, Fiza Khatri, Fatimah Asghar, Emma Wolf Haugh, Aziz Sohail, Aziza Ahmad, Archive Books, A Frei, Ayesha Chaudhry, Ayesha Alizeh, Abdul Muhammad, Muhammad Afaq, kal rituals, Promona Sengupta, Zahabia Khozema, Majeed Motani, Fatima Majeed, Ammara Jabbar, Yashfeen Talpur, Ayesha Tariq, Printmaking Studio at IVS and guests.

House of Kal Karachi is a stream of a language where yesterday and tomorrow are the same word. kal

co-curated by Fiza Khatri and Zahabia Khozema in conversation with Aziz Sohail, The Many Headed Hydra, Sakina Aliakbar and Sandev Handy.

In the late summer months of 2021 the House of kal in Karachi presents a diverse program in the frame of its one-week Open House. In addition to an exhibition of works by House of kal Karachi participants, visitors can expect intersting gatherings, conversations and performances. 


kal Karachi participants teaser © kal

Participating Artists

kal brings together art practitioners whose work explores feminist, anti-fascist, anti-racist and queer possibility. Get to know the participants. 

Open House


پیار، مذاہمت، خیال

2 September - 9 September

Open from 3 pm - 8 pm, Indus Valley School of Art and Architecture Gallery

a co-created shared space bringing together works by the House of Kal Karachi residents, The Many Headed Hydra’s “Rituals” soft architecture by Emma Wolf Haugh, and offerings from the kal RITUALS publications as well as traces of drawing and writing workshops, field visits and invited guests and friends.

It is inherently queer and feminist to flatten heirarchy and democratise a space. Since this May, we have been offering collective care, staying with the mundane and the present, rupturing and repairing, un-making, re-considering, and thieving. We welcome you to climb down into our space and meet us where we are.

Gatherings and conversations

To make our gatherings as safe as possible amidst the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic, we kindly ask everyone to join with a mask. Food will only be served outside in the courtyard.

2 September, 3 pm - 8 pm
celebration ceremony for House of kal Karachi

with works and offerings by Ayesha Chaudhry, Sehan Khanna, Sophia-Layla Afsar, Tehreem Mela, Ayesha Alizeh, kal RITUALS and invited co-makers, guests and friends.

5 September
, 5 pm - 7 pm
Potentialities of Feminist World Building in Pakistan
A conversation with Zoya Gul Hasan, Yusra Alvi and Abira Ashfaq
moderated by Ayesha Alizeh
This talk will take place online via Zoom

Bringing together historians, architects and activists from Lahore and Karachi, this conversation explores architecture and space-making and its relationship to gender in Pakistan. Thinking through both the history of the zenana outside of the harem in Mughal India and the impact of colonial architecture on marginilised genders and bringing the conversation to the present movement of feminist world building and justice making, this conversation will imagine the future of feminist architectures and spaces in Pakistan.

6 September, 6 pm - 7:30 pm
Artist Talks by Tehreem Mela and Sophia-Layla Afsar
Moderated by Aziz Sohail

9 September
, 5 pm - 6:30 pm
Sharing Circle
With Sehan Khanna, Arham Bhaiji and Surkh Hina

This sharing circle is a celebration of the space we have co-created throughout the open house. Some conversations require a safe space and we aim to make this castle a space where people feel comfortable sharing their work. Surkh Hina, Arham Bhaiji and Sehan Khanna start us off by sharing some of their writings and the audience is invited to share their work if they are comfortable.

9 September, 6:30 pm - 8 pm
Artist Talks by Ayesha Alizeh and Zahabia Khozema
Moderated by Aziz Sohail


4 September, 10 am – 2 pm
Karachi Radical Tour
With Shahana Rajani

(by invitation only)

The Karachi Radical Tour enables an understanding of the city beyond static colonial and post-colonial architecture by highlighting its spaces and histories of struggle. This tour refuses the easy narratives made available to us by official histories and building projects. We will visit D.J. Science College, Empress Market, the Ratan Talao Gurdwara and Quaid's Mazar to engage with forgotten histories that make visible the erasure and marginalization that were inherent to the 'developing' of the city and nation-state.

4 September, 4 pm - 6 pm
Holding Space for Queer and Trans Grief
With Sophia-Layla Afsar and Aesha Munaf
Register through: kalkarachi@gmail.com

Recent public discussions of patriarchal violence in Pakistan have largely been silent on violence against queer and trans folks. This highlights double discrimination: violence by cis men and erasure by cis feminists. In this private session, we'll be creating and holding space for queer & trans grief. Not just grieving those who were killed but also the loss of what was. The loss of what might have been. The loss of what never will be.

7 September, 5 pm – 7:30 pm
Zine Making Workshop
With Sophia Balagamwala and Tehreem Mela
Register through: kalkarachi@gmail.com

Zines are self-published publications, created as an alternative to mainstream publishing. They have historically, and continue to exist as a popular format of information, art, experimentation, and activism. This workshop will look at zine making practices in South Asia, with a focus on feminist and queer practices. Workshop participants will be led through a series of short exercises and have the opportunity to create their own zine. Please bring (1) An object or photograph you’d like to explore through this workshop (2) Anything you’d like to include in your zine such as magazine clippings, photocopies, photographs or original drawings.


02 September, 3 - 8 pm & 06 September 4 - 6 pm
Hum Meri Jaan (We My Beloved)
Performance by Sehan Khanna

Tumhe nahin lagta
Hum pehle se ek dusre ko jaante hain

Salam, Han shayad
Chalo kahin aur chalte hain
Par kahan?

Bana lenge koi jaga
Sirf hum, Meri jaan
Hum, Meri jaan

In spaces we created we were stuck in our own biases and discomforts. There was a need for them to see me and live me the way I want it to be. Except do we actually have that answer?

 I don't, but I wanted her to know.

Pareshan kyun ho rahe ho?
Dhoondh lenge hum, hum

2 September, 3 pm - 8 pm
Say Their Names

During the opening gathering Sophia-Layla Afsar, Sardara, and Shani will be making black armbands commemorating the names of murdered trans women in Pakistan. We invite you to take one and tie it around your arm.

We will also be posting the names around the neighbourhood of the Open House.

Never forget.

3 September and 8 September, 5 - 7 pm
Milna Julna: A cloth weaving & reading session
led by Ayesha Chaudhry

We will collectively construct a piece of cloth, symbolic of care and made with feminist and anti-capitalist intention. During the session we will read and listen to excerpts from writing and music around care within resistance (however you may interpret this) while we co-weave pieces of fabric brought in by the participants. To participate, bring a piece of writing/music & fabric that you would like to add and contribute to this collective making. In addition to the scheduled co-creating sessions, this is an ongoing work that everyone is encouraged to add to during their visit to the open house.

Team House of kal Karachi

a language where yesterday and tomorrow are the same word. kal is co-initiated by Aziz Sohail and The Many Headed Hydra. The Houses of kal are curated and cared for collectively by Aziz Sohail, Fiza Khatri, Sandev Handy, The Many Headed Hydra with Sakina Aliakbar, Zahabia Khozema and the teams of District*School Without Center and Indus Valley School of Art and Architecture.

Team House of kal Karachi: Ayesha Chaudhry, Ayesha Alizeh, Tehreem Mela, Sophia-Layla Afsar, Sehan Khanna, Seher Naveed, Abdul Muhammad, Muhammad Afaq, Sajan Kumar, Raees, Younus, Zahabia Khozema, Fiza Khatri, Aziz Sohail, Zoya Ahmed, Huma Tasawwar.

Gathering artists and writers from South Asia, the South Asian diaspora and post-/migrant Europe, kal unfolds in multiple strands including a DIY radio channel called radio kal, the three Houses of kal – a constellation of feminist infrastructures for transdiciplinary and collaborative art practices & alternative pedagogies in Karachi, Colombo and Berlin –  and a series of publications.

Radio Kal: DIY Feminist Radio Workshop: Tooling # 2: Acidrains of Andromeda|Soundhounds of the Profound mit psXssotm, 2021. ©kal

DIY Radiokanal
Radio kal

A fleeting space for artistic experimentation and for gathering community across space and time.