Estb. 1882

University of the Punjab

News Archives

Press Release

Google pays tribute to Anna Molka Ahmed
Google pays tribute to Anna Molka Ahmed

LAHORE: (Monday, June 01, 2020): World’s largest search engine Google LLC has paid tribute to renowned Pakistani artist and educator Anna Molka Ahmed, who founded Punjab University’s College of Art and Design. Anna Molka Bridger was born on August 13th, 1917, in London, England. She was determined to become an artist from a young age and enrolled herself at the Royal College of Art in London. There she met her husband, and the pair soon moved to Lahore.  “Today’s Doodle honors acclaimed Pakistani artist and educator Anna Molka Ahmed, the country’s first art teacher to bring her students out of the classroom to paint outdoors. On this day in 1940, Ahmed established the Fine Arts Department, now the University College of Arts & Design, at the University of the Punjab in Lahore, laying the foundation for decades of arts education in the country,” reads a message on Google when clicked on doodle. She remained college principal from 1940 to 1975 and for more than thirty years, she was instrumental in fostering a culture of arts education in Pakistan. Ahmed’s path took a fortuitous turn when she responded to an ad from Punjab University seeking an artist to open a women's art department at the school.  Ahmed organized the first art exhibitions ever held in the country, and many of her students went on to establish their own university arts programs throughout Pakistan. Meanwhile, Ahmed never stopped painting, her expressionist work often combining European influences with inspiration from her adopted home country. In honor of her pioneering achievements in the world of fine arts education, Ahmed was honored in 1963 with the Tamgha-i-Imtiaz (Medal of Excellence), one of the highest civil awards for a citizen in Pakistan. Punjab University has named one of its art galleries as Anna Molka Art Gallery."Thank you, Anna Molka Ahmed, for inspiring generations of Pakistani artists," says Google.