Mantiq of the Mantis: A Retreat and a Treat
Lahore, today, is an ever-expanding concrete jungle; fast-paced and competitive. A space such as Mantiq of the Mantis is a much-needed escape. At least that is what I felt when I visited recently.
The entryway is decorated with an array of eclectic potted plants and a small outdoor seating arrangement. Upon walking in, I felt instantly relaxed. That is the aesthetic they’re going for. Mantiq of the Mantis is a place where creativity can flow freely and artists can collaborate in a wholesome atmosphere.
It’s an all-encompassing space; a brainchild of Sabeen Jamil and Mehreen Murtaza. It claims to be:
“A retreat for dreamers, thinkers, writers, poets, artists, and book lovers – an experiment for realizing weird fiction, obscure art and elusive impressions of the strange and insatiably curious.”
The cozy little corner offers a multitude of possibilities to its visitors. Almost every flat service within Mantiq of the Mantis is covered in books, whether from their own publication house, their “strange library”, or their quaint bookshop. The music collection is also worth a mention; music by “The Beatles” was resounding through the building when I visited.
The Magic of the Mantiq of the Mantis
Mantiq of the Mantis is not just a spectacle to witness or a space to relax in, instead, it challenges you to find the odd in the mundane and to explore new possibilities. It is also a publishing house. They not only sell notebooks, sketchbooks, postcards, and bookmarks, they also publish a digest. All of the items on offer are handmade and one of a kind. An extension to this is their bookshop, consisting of a unique range of books, and handpicked gift bags that comprise an assortment of official Mantiq of the Mantis merchandise. What I found most riveting was their library is just as noteworthy if not more. The publications have been organized by subject matter, such as literature, film, art and rare editions.
At times, on some select days of the week, they host events such as talks, reading circles, creative courses, and exclusive cinema screenings. You can like their Instagram and Facebook pages to be up to date about the events. It would serve you even better to avail a yearlong membership. No visit to Mantiq of the Mantis is complete without a stop at their little cafe, I treated myself to a cup of their house-brewed coffee. A perfect end to an invigorating trip.
Worth a Visit
Mantiq of the Mantis is a must visit in a city where creative outlets are few and hard to come by. I would recommend that you keep up with their social media accounts to stay updated with the latest happenings.