How would you describe yourself?
How would you describe your art?
My art style is best described as Mad Men Modern. I draw inspiration from the Mid-Century Modern style, Scandinavian simplicity, Nordic illustrations and Folk Art from India.
I love the use of abstraction to represent moods, feelings and associations. The human form, and expressions fascinate me and I love to synthesize the feelings of basic human emotions as superimposed faces or bodies. I love experimenting with geometric shapes, organically flowing lines, the play of positive – negative space and the use of bold and dramatic color in my art. At times maximal, at times stark, my style is constantly evolving as I change with time. You will always find lines threading through my compositions. like threads holding the story together.
Pen ink and gouache paint are my favourite media to work with and I use a wide range of techniques from collage, stippling, marking and digital superimpositions to create texture, depth and movement in my pieces.
How would you describe your field?
My field of art has no limits, no lines, no end. It is an infinite realm of imagination, exploration and creation to tell stories through abstraction. The field of abstract mixed media art is full of artists who push though the conventional or traditional forms of art and the use of mixed media presents infinite possibilities of creations.
What do you want to say through your art?
I tell stories through my art. Stories that link us all together in some form or another. Stories of love, of heartbreak, of suffering, of victory. The simplicity of the natural world and how deeply we are attuned to our feelings. I choose to abstract these feelings so that they hold different meanings and associations for different people. It is like a mark on a timeline, telling me how far I’ve come, how I see things and how our feelings can take a shape or a form. I like to think of my art as poetry with brushstrokes and I firmly believe, that the right artwork will speak to your heart and mean something more than just its title when you look at it.
What / Who inspires you?
I find inspiration everywhere. The human form inspires me. The power of the power of the feminine inspires me. I find inspiration in basic human emotions and feelings like the feelings of loss, of triumph, of love. The natural world is also a great source of inspiration in my work. Rocks, dried leaves, branches, cracked earth and peeling paint. Rust, dust, water and whimsically flowing patterns and lines thread through my work. I love to read and poetry inspires me. The ocean inspires me because in the end, the ocean gives us the very basics of all there is to live: sun, water and salt.
Does your work comment on your social or political issues?
Although I try not to comment of social or political issues, my work does celebrate the feminine and the Godess that is in all us women. I believe in the power of the soul. The connections our soul makes and how it transcends age, gender, time or geographical boundaries. No matter what the title of my work is, I love seeing how it is interpreted by people based on their own life experiences.
What obstacles have you faced?
As a child growing up in the 70’s deciding to take on art as a career was a hard sell to my family of medical doctors. It was a leap of faith into the unknown, with no point of reference. I still hesitate when I call myself an “artist” . Second guessing myself and constantly questioning whether people will “see” my art the way I see it is always a challenge. As a newcomer to Canada, a decade ago, I had to start from scratch, learn the ropes and figure things out the hard way. Behind every “good” piece there are hundreds of fails, the what-if’s, tears, frustration and calloused fingers. It took me years to find my style, believe in myself, to follow my heart and not just follow what was trendy in the moment.
What is the best advice you could give to someone entering the same industry as you?
Choosing to be an artist is one of the hardest decisions you will ever make. The road is filled with a lot of obstacles. It takes time and patience to develop your own unique style. That is what will make you shine, but once you find your style, don’t stop experimenting and exploring. Whether its new media, techniques or pigments and surfaces. Be curious, be fearless. In the off chance that something fails, it would have been a lesson in what NOT to do. The more resources you have, the more creative you can be. Find your Artist’s Voice and stay true to it no matter what the others are doing. Also, NEVER work for free. Never let people take advantage or shortchange your creativity, passion and talent as an artist.
On a more pragmatic level have you been supported during your project?
I’ve had immense support from my family. Once my parents got over the shock of their daughter not following in their footsteps, they have been front row and cheering at every event, exhibition and show opening. My husband is hugely supportive of my work and manages the business side of my art: from shipping, stock keeping, accounts, invoices and the heavy lifting for shows and exhibitions. My friends and family have been front and center through my journey as an artist and I couldn’t even have dreamed of having a thriving art business without them. Most of all, this journey has been for my 12 year old daughter, Aarini, who is perhaps my biggest inspiration of all, to show her, that she can follow heart and let her imagination flow, and believe, that creativity gives us the wings to soar above the ordinary.