WOMENâ€™S DAY EDITION
ST RTISTS The Talk Magazine
Contemporary Women In Art
ST RTISTS MAGAZINE Women’s Day Special Edition March 2018
Chief Editor/Writing Contributor
PRIYA YABALURI Graphic design Priya Yabaluri Cover Photo Coutesy Sangeeta Gupta
RTISTS is a Premium Women’s Art Talk Magazine featuring Contemporary women in art.
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CONTENTS March 2018
Artist Of The Month
Spectacular Abstract Art By Artist Sangeeta Gupta Pg10
Stunning Seasonal Watercolors Artist Kathleen Berry Bergeron Pg 30
Splendid oil and Watercolor Art By Artist Rashmi Soni Pg 50
Majestic Still Life Photography By Artist Tina Thelen Pg 68 4
CONTENTS March 2018
Kabir And Life -A Brilliant Journey through Canvas By Artist Gayatri Mehta Pg82
Beautiful Still-Life and Portraits By Artist Galina Sergeeva Pg120
Human Moods In Thread By Artist Jaya Chala Pg108
CONTRIBUTORS Stunning Wildlife And Nature By Artist Bhagvati Nath Pg136
Beautiful Paintings and Aesthetics By Maria Bablyak Pg 152
Divinity and Art -An Artistâ€™s Diary By Artist Satwant Sayan Pg 170
Dear Readers Happy Women’s Day one and all! I hope you’ve enjoyed the festivities so far and are looking forward to a very bright 2018.Last Year in 2017, when this magazine was launched, I was a bit jittery as how to manage things and bring out the best in the compiled editions. But things have been more than good for me and the response I received from various Artists around the globe just put me in a great surprise.Today ST RTISTS is an esteemed International Women’s Art Magazine. Whatever you’re doing this International Women’s Day, please think of the women in your life who have only made it better – no matter how big or small their impact is. We’d love to share the women who have inspired you and made you inspire others. Our interviewees this month are all awe-inspiring women who share with us their passions and have achieved success in various other fields of life too. Some are multifaceted personalities ,dignitaries who have been brilliantly managing their homes, work and passion for art.Hope you will have as much fun reading our special issue as we had putting it together and wishing you “A Very Happy Women’s Day”!
Priya Yabaluri Editor-In-Chief
Creativity Creativity â€“ a narrative of infinite passion, sweet and sour memories, dreams of the distant future. Creativity is exploring timelessness, the present always mingled with past and future, and is all about rebellion of a free spirit an expression of freedom more than love. Sangeeta Gupta
ARTIST OF THE MONTH
Sangeeta Gupta (B. Sc, M.A, L.L.B) born at Gorakhpur, U.P. in 1958 spent her
childhood in Tamkuhi road a small town, part of Kushi Nagar district. She is the first woman who qualified Civil Services and is an officer of 1984 batch IRS. She was given the gold medal in 1986 by National Academy of Direct Taxes, Nagpur for being the best probationer of her batch. She bagged the best bureaucrat of the year award of Make in India Excellence award conferred by Indo Global Business Council, Delhi. She has done her town, district, and state proud of her achievements in different fields like art, literature, filmmaking and civil services. For Sangeeta Gupta abstract art is a means to reach the non-objective experiences that help shape the inner life. It is a witness to the fact that manâ€™s spiritual needs do not disappear even at times engulfed by gross materialism. She strives to express the poetic vision in her works. Keeping in view her strong passion for painting and writing, one can only make guess about her performance on professional duties front. But the fact is that she has earned distinctions and achieved the targets assigned to her wherever she was posted to date. Presently, she is Chief Commissioner of Income Tax, Delhi.
G U P T A
Song of the Cosmos 12
ST RTISTS In the year 1995, she held her first solo show at Birla Academy of Art & Culture, Kolkata, which was inaugurated by none other than Mother Teresa. The entire sale proceeds of this show were donated to CRY. She has held 32 solo shows all over India including Delhi, Mumbai, Kolkata, Bangalore, Hyderabad, Lucknow, Chandigarh and overseas in London, Berlin, Munich, Lahore Belfast (Northern Ireland) and Thessaloniki(Greece). In August 2013, her 26th solo exhibition dedicated to Uttarakhand was inaugurated by the former President of India Dr. A P J Abdul Kalam. The fund of Rs. 20 lakh raised through the sale proceeds of her paintings has been used for creating a Fine Art Education Grant for the students of Uttarakhand She is promoting Art and Culture through Prithvi Fine Art & Culture Centre, a charitable society of Delhi. As part of a cultural exchange programme of Prithvi, was instrumental in organizing an exhibition of 18 Greek artists at Lalit Kala Academy, Delhi (2014) and in 2015 a group of seven artists of India was represented in an exhibition at EMS Museum Gallery Thessaloniki (Greece) as part of Cultural Exchange project.
She is also promoting a project for Revival of Basholi Paintings, a heritage of Jammu, a project of Prithvi Fine Art & Cultural Centre. All profits from the sale of her photographs printed on Canvas is being utilized for helping students of Basholi art. She has participated in more than 200 group shows in India and abroad, in national exhibitions of Lalit Kala Akademi, AIFACS, and Sahitya Kala Parishad and in several art camps. Her paintings are in the permanent collection of the Bharat Bhavan Museum, Bhopal, Museum of Sacred Art (MOSA) Belgium and Macedonian Museum of Contemporary Art, Thessaloniki (Greece). Her works have been represented at the India Art Fair, New Delhi in 2011, 2013, 2014, 2015 and 2016. As part of Indian Delegation, she had a solo exhibition of paintings at Shenzhen, China 11th International Cultural and Industrial fair 2015. She has participated in 3rd Jerusalem Biennale, Jerusalem (2017).
Sangeeta Gupta has contributed a lot to literature too.There is a collection of short stories and six anthologies of poems in Hindi to her credit. Sangeeta Gupta’s collection of poems” Iss Par Uss Par”, has been translated in Bangla and Pratinaad, has also been translated into Bangla, English, and German. Weaves of Time, a collection of English poems was published in 2013 by Partridge, a Penguin company which is also translated in Greek Sparsh Ke Gulmohar (collection of Hindi poems published by Rajkamal Prakashan 2015) also translated in Dogri. Ladakh: Knowing the unknown” published by Full Circle 2015 launched at Jaipur Literature Festival 2015, Nehru Centre London and in Thessaloniki, Greece. EKAM a book of poems and photographs published in 2017, launched at Jaipur Literature Festival 2017. Beparwah Ruh:(2017) poems in Hindi. Song of Silence: (2017) poems in English.
Apart from winning all India awards for drawing and painting her works occupy space on the walls of the country’s most prestigious residences and offices including those of the President and Prime Minister as well as Governors of Karnataka and Jammu and Kashmir. This multifaceted lady also dabbles in several other fields like photography and she has taken part in national exhibitions of photography in 1999 and 2001, New Delhi. 13
She has also directed, scripted and shot seven documentary films. Her films have been screened at various prestigious venues in Delhi and telecast on DD Bharati and Lok Sabha channels several times. Kung Fu Nuns in Mystic Ladakh was screened at 3rd Delhi International Film Festival 2014 Sangeeta Gupta has been awareded with many honours .She was awarded” Achievers Award “ on 11th October 2017 by India Eye International Human Rights Observer. 7th Rajiv Gandhi Excellence Award on 23rd September 2016, India Habitat Center, New Delhi. The Great Women Achievers Awards - 2016 by The Performer (group of art &culture) on 31-August-2016, Jammu. Kala Drishti Award (2016) for exemplary work done in the field of Civil Service &Art. Delhi Gaurav Award 2015 in Professional Category for Art & Culture by Indian Brave Hearts supported by Union Ministry of Social Justice & Empowerment; 6th Rajiv Gandhi Excellence Award (2015); India Excellence Award for Poetry 2015; Priyadarshini Award 2015 as an International Cultural Entrepreneur by the Ministry of Micro, Small and Medium Entrepreneur (MSME) India. 35th Women Entrepreneurship Award 2015 by Bharat Nirman; Global Women Achievers Award 2015 by IGBC; Poet of the Year Award (2014) by 3rd Delhi International Film Festival 2014; Awarded and honored as an Artist by 3rd Delhi International Film Festival 2014. She is also the recipient of 6th National Women Excellence Award (2013); Rashtrakavi Maithilisharan Gupt Samman (2013) for contribution to Hindi poetry; Women Achievers Award (2013) by Indian Council for UN relations on the eve of International Women’s Day; Vishwa Hindi Pracheta Alankaran (2013); Udbhav Shikhar Samman (2012) for achievements in the field of art and literature; Hindprabha Award (1999) for Indian Women Achievers by Uttar Pradesh Mahila Manch; 77th Annual Award for Painting (2005) by All India Fine Arts & Craft Society, New Delhi and 69th Annual Award for Drawing 1998. She was awarded Gold medal for Best probationer (1984 batch Indian Revenue Service). Today it is a great pleasure and honor to feature Smt Sangeeta Gupta’s interview for which she took out her precious time ,to share with us her experiences and knowledge in the art field .
STAR: How do you manage your professional life as a Chief Commissioner of Income Tax and as a successful artist? You must have really struggled hard to reach your goals and achieving them so brilliantly in both the fields. SANGEETA GUPTA: For me, abstract art is a means to reach the non-objective experiences that help shape the inner life. It is a witness to the fact that man’s spiritual needs do not disappear even at times engulfed by gross materialism. I strive to express this poetic vision in my works. Keeping in view my strong passion for painting and writing, one can only make guess about my performance on professional duties front. But
I have managed to earn distinctions and achieved the targets assigned to me wherever I was posted to date. Presently, I am working as Chief Commissioner of Income Tax, Delhi. It is a question of your priorities. I do what I love to do, and I am always able to create time for that. It is all about time management, determination, focus, and discipline. I have never struggled with achieving anything in life. I always enjoy the process of doing what I do every moment of my life.
STAR: When and where were you born? Tell me about your background. Where did your life as an artist begin? SANGEETA GUPTA: I was born in Gorakhpur, U.P. in 1958, spent my early childhood in Tamkuhi road a small town of Kushi Nagar district. My parents were highly educated and placed substantial emphasis on good education of their children. I was sent to a boarding school in Gorakhpur and completed my high school from Carmel School, Gorakhpur. My father was very keen that I should become self-sufficient and economically independent. I did my graduation and post-graduation from Banaras Hindu University. Much later in life I also did my LLB from Delhi University while working as a civil servant. I have no formal education in art. I come from the guru “shishya parampara”, wherein I was taught by my guru at home for long five years. 16
I started my career as a lecturer in political science and later appeared for civil services. I happen to be the first woman who qualified Civil Services from my district. I am an officer of 1984 batch IRS. I was bestowed with a gold medal in 1986 by National Academy of Direct Taxes, Nagpur for being the best probationer of my batch. My first book of Hindi poems “Antas se” was published in the year 1988. I have 12 published books now. In the year 1995, I held my first solo exhibition at Birla Academy of Art & Culture, Kolkata, which was inaugurated by none other than Mother Teresa. The entire sale proceeds of this show were donated to CRY. Have held 32 solo shows all over India including Delhi, Mumbai, Kolkata, Bangalore, Hyderabad, Lucknow, Chandigarh and overseas in London, Berlin, Munich, Lahore Belfast (Northern Ireland) and Thessaloniki(Greece).
ST RTISTS In August 2013, my 26th solo exhibition dedicated to Uttarakhand was inaugurated by the former President of India Dr. A P J Abdul Kalam. The fund of Rs. 20 lakh raised through the sale proceeds of my paintings have been used for creating a Fine Art Education Grant for the students of Uttarakhand.
STAR: What artists inspire you. What is the source of inspiration? SANGEETA GUPTA: Inspiration for me always comes from within. The cosmic energy connects all living and non-living in a bond. The creative work of other artists can bring joy or influence one to some extent. I admire works of Van Gogh, Rothko, Monnet, Mark Stella, Kandinsky, Tyeb Mehta, Gaitonde and Ram Kumar, Biren Dey to name the few. 17
ST RTISTS STAR: Why are you so passionate about ART? SANGEETA GUPTA: There are few why’s which cannot be answered in certain terms. For me, it is connecting with my inner self. Most people do not know and also do not make enough efforts to know what makes them happy. I have always been interested in painting and writing. Invariably it has always brought joy and immense peace to me. Once, I realized that painting and writing are my sources of happiness, I have always created time to pursue my passion. STAR: How do you go about the planning and beginning work on a painting? How important are balance and tension? Do you use any form of dynamic symmetry or similar in your abstracts? SANGEETA GUPTA: I do not plan to make a painting, I am basically a spontaneous painter. Each painting expresses the cumulative experiences of one’s life stored in one’s subconscious mind. I strive to create a harmonious balance through the definition of five elements i.e. Prithvi(earth), Vayu(air), Jal(water), Aakash(ether) and Agni(fire). I have chosen to be an abstract artist to liberate myself and therefore do not like to use any forms which can restrain my being.
STAR: Describe a situation in which you were able to effectively ‘read’ another person and guide your actions by your understanding of their individual needs or values as an artist. SANGEETA GUPTA: Any sensitive person understands the situational needs of others and always keeps that in mind before conducting oneself. All creative people are blessed with this natural instinct. STAR: What mediums do you work in and why? SANGEETA GUPTA: I have tried my hands in various mediums, however, I enjoy working with acrylic on canvas the most. I am also very comfortable painting with oil on canvas. I still continue to do my ink drawings on paper on a regular basis. I also experiment with mixed media often. STAR :What obstacles do you face in making and exhibiting your work? SANGEETA GUPTA: I have been especially blessed all throughout and have not faced any obstacle in making or exhibiting my works. Being economically independent gives you the freedom to experiment with your creativity. Art is not a fulltime occupation and can be best expressed when one is free from economic constraints.
STAR: Give an example of an important goal that you set in the past. Tell about your success in reaching it. SANGEETA GUPTA: Goals are generally set for official/mundane work and it is very important to achieve them within the stipulated time. For creativity goals cannot be set, it is a spontaneous act. However, discipline is a requisite intrinsic quality to establish oneself as a poet or artist. There is no substitute for sustained efforts in whatever one is pursuing. Opportunities have always knocked my door and I have always said yes to them. STAR: What are your favorite works you have created? Can you explain us 2- 3 works and the thought process behind them? SANGEETA GUPTA: I am a spontaneous painter and once I start a painting, it is my endeavor to make it a masterpiece. Each and every piece which I create is close to my heart, it is like giving birth to a child. I do not categorize my works into favorites or lesser than that. It is the privilege of viewers to decide which one is their favorite. Once I initiate a painting, the painting itself dictates how to go about it and when to finish it. My works are reflections of the subconscious mind. Painting is like meditation to me. 19
STAR: What other forms of creativity do you like? SANGEETA GUPTA: I have been keenly interested in writing especially poetry, I have 12 published books to my credit, 6 of them are translated in various languages i.e. Bangla, Dogri, English, German and Greek. I have also scripted and directed 7 documentary films. Some of them have been telecast on various television channels. STAR: Any other advice for artists trying to get established? SANGEETA GUPTA: Any creative field needs sustained practice and this is like a sadhana which every artist has to undertake, there is no shortcut to establishing yourself in any field.
STAR: What is your average day like? SANGEETA GUPTA: I work as an officer from 10 a.m to 6 p.m, five days a week. After office, I generally eat an early dinner and work in my studio or do some creative writing or just catch up with my reading. I go off to sleep around 11 p.m. In the mornings I do my exercise, look after the household works, do my chanting and sometimes I also paint or write if I rise early. On weekends I lock myself in the house and paint or write. I do not indulge in futile socializing or so-called networking. I love to interact with people and exchange ideas.
Artist Sangeeta Gupta works her way through a psychological journey that juxtaposes aspiration and limitation; meanwhile, the forms in her art shift to reflect the intuitive abstracts which are usually powerful and have this captivating aura. Some of her works with abstract designs imply natural images, such as the character of water and the texture and colors of earth or stone. The painting style is exceptional.The depictions and forms through the use of pure artistic elements like lines, textures, and colors liberate her expression from the direct representation of reality.The magazine is proud to feature this genius and multifaceted lady,who is an inspiring Icon to many. ( You can find more about Sangeeta Gupta on her website:www.sangeeetagupta.co.in) 27
Kathleen Berry Bergeron is a well established and famous Artist from Vermont, New England USA.She was born in a small town in Northern Vermont. She showed much interest in art at an early age and her parents encouraged her along the way.She took private art lessons in high school and they were kind enough to buy her the materials she needed. Even though they were not wealthy, they found a way for her to travel to Europe the summer of her senior year to study art with the foreign language art league. She traveled to Rome, Florence, and Paris and it was an enlightening experience. “Painting is a journey into the creative spirit. It allows my soul to soar to new heights with excitement and promise. Every painting presents new challenges and rewards. I am very blessed to be an Artist and love to bring the joy I feel for it to others.”
Kathleen began her passion for Art with her parent’s support and encouragement. Her work has evolved over the years and her enthusiasm for teaching grown. She has participated in numerous shows and won many awards throughout the nation. She is a member of the Essex Art League, on the Board of Directors of the Northern Vermont Artists’ Association, and a Signature Member of the Vermont Watercolor Society. “I find such excitement and pleasure in the process of painting not just the end result. My goal is to capture the essence of the moment and allow the viewer to be drawn in. Watercolor can be rather unpredictable but to me this is the joy of this medium. I compare it to a dance partner ; I do not try to control it but rather move with it.” Kathleen teaches classes and workshops in Watercolor. She is described by her students as warm, friendly, highly motivational and creates a positive environment for learning and enjoyment. “Painting is my passion, my energy and my source of constant fascination”.She says!
B E R G E R O N 31
The Porch at Sinclair Towers 32
ST RTISTS STAR: Which contemporary artists do you admire and where do you draw your inspiration from? KATHLEEN.B: I am inspired by a number of artists who can paint precisely with passion and freedom, examples include Don Andrews, Jean Haines , Birgit O’Connor, Mel Stabin, Linda Kemp. I live in the beautiful state of Vermont in northern New England, therefore, the majestic landscapes and changing seasons are a constant source of inspiration.
The Sleigh Ride
STAR: How do you go about the planning and beginning work on a painting? KATHLEEN.B: I ask myself “why do I want to paint this subject and what do I hope to convey. I decide on what will be my center of interest and how I can lead the viewer’s eye to it and then out. I try to avoid symmetry and instead look for ways I can engage the viewer. I eliminate non-essential details to create expressive paintings.
STAR: What are your current projects?
STAR: Please tell us about yourâ€?Pleinâ€? air painting and Expressive watercolor.
KATHLEEN.B: At this time I am planning a book on watercolor. It will be a how-to book based on the knowledge I have acquired over the years. I teach classes and workshops throughout the year and therefore I must continuously challenge myself to try new techniques and explore new ways of capturing a subject so that I can continue to bring enthusiasm and motivation to my classes.
KATHLEEN.B: I absolutely love to paint outside in natural surroundings. It allows you to see the whole picture and make decisions on what is important to capture and what is non-essential detail. The light is always changing, therefore, it forces you to make the crucial decision quickly and expressively. It is one of the best ways to fine-tune your craft.
ST RTISTS STAR: Can you tell us more about your favorite medium? You conduct special workshops too. Please tell us more about them.
STAR: What are your favorite works you have created?
KATHLEEN.B: My favorite medium is “Watercolor” I teach 8-week classes from September till June and workshops from time to time. I am very passionate about teaching and love to bring my knowledge to others and allow them to find their voice. I love the challenge that watercolor can create. I totally get lost in the process of painting. I like to think of watercolor-like a “dance partner”. You learn to move with it, not control it.
KATHLEEN.B: My favorite works usually involve a breakthrough in my creative journey. It may be something accidental or spontaneous and often creates an “Aha “moment.
STAR: What is your average day like?
STAR: Any other advice for artists trying to get established?
KATHLEEN.B: I try to find time each day to do something that will further my artistic endeavor. It may be painting, watching a video about a new technique, reading and going outside to paint. I teach classes and workshops and I have to be an â€œexplorerâ€? of what makes your work more vital and engaging.
KATHLEEN.B: Paint, paint, paint! Look for opportunities to show your work and market it. Marketing involves considerable time but is necessary.
STAR: What other forms of creativity do you like? KATHLEEN.B : I love any form of expressive creatively. I love to dance, theatre, poetry, and music.
STAR: Please tell us about your training in painting.How do you think your artistic practice has changed since you began painting? KATHLEEN.B: Even though I have taken a number of classes and workshops, I consider myself a self-taught artist. I am constantly reading about new techniques and learning new skills. The key to becoming a better artist is persistence.
ST RTISTS STAR: How does the social and political climate in your country and around the world impact your artistic expression? KATHLEEN.B: It pushes me to recognize how what I do can affect others. STAR: What are you currently working on? KATHLEEN.B: I seem to always be working on more than one project at a time. I have to keep my “mojo” going and in order to do that, I have to challenge myself and try new directions. I am currently working on creating expressive paintings that tell a story and involve the viewer. I am also working on projects to do with my students. STAR: Who are your current art inspirations? Do you look to other contemporary artist’s work during your artistic process? KATHLEEN.B: I am always looking for new ways to adapt my style to those I admire. I love to go to galleries and exhibitions and educate myself on the techniques of others and how it has worked to create their way of painting. STAR: Why did you prefer the color palette reflected in your work? KATHLEEN.B: I am a colorist, therefore, I love to push the envelope with my palette. I believe that you should have fun with color and not always paint things the color they appear.
STAR: What is your daily painting schedule like? Do you get enough time to paint everyday ? KATHLEEN.B: I try to paint every day even though it is not always possible. Painting is my soul and to improve my mood as a teacher I must constantly grow in my field and improve my skills.
ST RTISTS STAR: What is your favorite experience as an artist? KATHLEEN.B: I have a couple of favorite experiences. I love being outside in 70-degree weather on the top of a mountain beginning a painting with wonder and anticipation. I also love the experience of seeing the joy in a student’s eyes where they try a new method or technique and it works. The sense of wonder they get is breathtaking and never gets old. This is why I teach. “I sat by the Champlain waterfront on July fourth waiting with the crowds in anticipation of the evening’s fireworks. The sunset was so incredible … you had to shield your eyes from it.”
STAR: How have you been so successful with marketing and selling your art? KATHLEEN.B: I am always looking for new ways to market and sell my work. You have to be able to dedicate time for that. I have created a line of greeting cards, limited edition prints, t-shirts, maple syrup bottles, tote bags all to get my work out there to be seen. It also provides an opportunity for people who otherwise may not be able to buy an original to collect some of my other artwork.
Sunset on the Waterfront
STAR: What is your thought behind your new series of paintings? KATHLEEN.B: Currently, I am working on a series of paintings in which I am trying to capture the illusion of “lights” permeating throughout the painting. Try to eliminate unnecessary details and have the light the primary focus. “Painting soothes my soul, is my passion, my energy and my source of constant fascination”.
STAR: What style of art would you classify your work?
STAR: How did your artworks become famous?
KATHLEEN, B: I would classify my style of work as “expressive”. I strive to capture the essence of a scene or portrait and eliminate non-essential details. I work fast and loose and this allows me the freedom to be playful and hopefully hold the viewer’s interest.
KATHLEEN.B: I would not say my artwork is “famous”. I have carved a name for myself by marketing my work and seeking out opportunities to display and promote as well as sell my work. You might say “I put myself out there” and hope people will respond.
Waiting For Pumpkins
“Watercolors can be unpredictable and tend to take on a life of their own. That’s the excitement for me. I paint every day; painting is my passion and also my release. What I most enjoy is throwing a little something extra in there to grab your attention, like putting together colors in ways you aren’t used to seeing. Our world is so full of color; why not paint it that way? I want people to feel happy when they see my work but ultimately what I want is that wow effect. “As an artist, my mission is to capture the essence of the subject rather than translate it literally. I like to leave some things up to the viewer to fill in. Less can be more in many instances. As a watercolorist, I am passionate about the journey, not just the end result. As an instructor, it gives me tremendous joy and fulfillment to share my knowledge with others.” Kathleen Berry Bergeron
Lake Champlain 44
“I want my work to capture people. I want them to feel compelled to give it a second, longer look.”
STAR: What is your favourite or exhilarating experience so far in this field? KATHLEEN.B: I am passionate about all that I do. I have raised 5 wonderful children. I feel it is our responsibility in life to use our talents and then pay it forward to others. STAR: What is integral to the work of an artist? KATHLEEN.B: Without a doubt, “PASSION” is integral in an artist’s work. STAR: What role does the artist have in society? KATHLEEN: The artist is a trailblazer. She is continually searching for new ways to excite the viewer about the beauty that surrounds us.
Never give up Practice Learn from others Become an observer Learn to paint with connection ENJOY the process, not the product Keep it simple and focused Relax and love what you do.
STAR: What style would you classify your work? JULIE DANT: I showed my work for months, online, before I finally realized that I had a style of my own. When I read about other photographers having a ‘style’ I was envious. I metioned this to a seasoned photographer friend of mine and he said, “But you DO have a style, Julie!” And I was very surprised to hear him say that. I could not see it then because I was new and still unsure of my abilities and talent. I came to see it gradually after that. I don’t think it is a really distinctive style, but I definitely like to use strong, bold colors in my images and I love the look of sharp contrasts. You won’t see many pastel, soft images in my portfolios or galleries, which is not to say I do not appreciate and love other artist’s work whose style is such because I do. It is just not how I personally see my images. I have always likened my bold and colorful ‘style’ to my personality. I am a ‘life of the party’ type of person who always came a little late to the party to make the ‘grand entrance’. ;) I always liked to ‘make a splash’ wherever I went. So I guess my ‘colorful, in-your-face’ personality bled over into my photography...uh...just a tad. STAR:Could you tell us some interesting facts about your life? JULIE DANT: My life has been pretty ordinary, maybe even a little boring. I’ve lived in a small town all of my life. I was married at 17 and had my two children by the time I was 20. I did not attend college and the only art training I’ve had was two years in high school. I’ve worked outside the home off and on my entire marriage, mostly in retail sales. My husband and I raised two great children and have two wonderful grandchildren who are soon to be out on their own also. I love to sing, play the guitar...well...the five chords I know anyway. I. Write, photograph, paint, and read. Pretty much ruled by the right side of my brain. Do NOT give me acomplicated, tricky, story math problem! People tell me Ishould have been a comedian. I DO love to make people laugh.I’ve lost 1036 pounds in my life….then gained 1046 back! 45
The Renaissance brought watercolor painting into the spotlight. It went beyond decorative manuscripts and into the works of artists like Albrecht Dürer.In terms of watercolor, he was considered one of the first prominent European painters to use the medium in his work.
Kathleen Berry Bergeron paintings exclusively impress us in the form of landscapes and nature and life, which we are able to see today and be inspired too. STARTISTS Magazine specially “Thanks” her ,for her outstanding dedication, years of perseverance and contribution in the art field. 46
This is the place where nature and civilization come together in the most colorful of ways. The natural hues of the green—specifically, the soft sunlight on the grass and golden grains of the sand—contain powerful messages of peace and tranquility. Kathleen was the winner of the Mary Bryan Award in 2007 for “Venice Canal” as well as numerous other awards over the years. Several prints on cards have been chosen by VT Governor Jim Douglas as his Governor’s Christmas Greeting Cards between 2007 and 2010 “First Snow, Stowe, VT” in print was chosen by Jim Douglas as a gift to his constituents 2008
You can find more about Kathleen Berry Bergeron on her website www.kathleenberrybergeron. com 47
Rashmi Soni is a self-taught artist and over the years has developed expertise in painting using various color mediums like Oil, Watercolor, Acrylic, Graphite, and Charcoal. She is the Founder of Shiny Colors Fine Art Classes in Parangipalya, HSR Layout Bangalore, and Coordinator of Karnataka for International Watercolor Society She worked as a lecturer of Political Science as a government employee in Jhansi, Uttar Pradesh. After getting married she relocated to Bangalore. She was sketching and painting since her childhood but sincerely she started her career as an Artist in 2010. She has completed Fine Art Diploma â€œAnkan Probarâ€? from Bangiya Sangeet Parishad affiliated with Kolkata university Ravindra Bharti Kala Vidyalaya. She is successfully running an art school named Shiny Colors Fine Art Classes in Bangalore since 2014.She has been teaching art, doing workshops and exhibiting her artworks since then. She has special expertise in making portrait paintings and drawings and also conducts workshops for teaching portrait painting and drawing. You can find more about her on her Facebook page.www.facebook.com/art.shinycolors Artist Rashmi Sonii intutively combines colors and figurative Art and presents a beautiful story of life as how poetic, evocative and intuitive art can be.It much resonates with our deepest self,our soul and life,reflecting much of our culture and tradition .Her paintings speak volumes of expertise and emotion. She has won two Awards and has many Solo and group shows to her credit.
Vivah (Marriage ceremony) 52
ST RTISTS STAR: Tell us about your interesting childhood . RASHMI SONI: I was born on 27th September 1976 in a small town named Mauranipur in Jhansi district, Uttar Pradesh, India. I was interested in art since my childhood.Initially, my mother was my source of inspiration and also my teacher. She made a Krishna portrait with watercolors when she was young. I saw that in my grandmotherâ€™s home and as a child I was surprised how she made it and wanted to make something myself. Later on, I made an oil color painting that was a copy work of an image from ISKON. The image depicted Krishna and Arjun blowing conches and ending the day of the Mahabharat war. This painting was 30 inches x 36 inches in size. I made this when I was 16 years old with a little guidance from my mother, who was a hobby artist herself. STAR: Tell me about your background. Where did your life as an artist begin? RASHMI SONI :I was busy with my studies and never thought that I would pursue art in future. After my studies, I got a job as a Political Science lecturer at Bundelkhand Degree College and got selected for State Administrative Service too. But my destiny was something else, I was married and then I came to Bangalore with my husband who was working in IT industry. We relocated to the USA for his work and there my artist journey started. I started giving time to my long lost hobby, Drawing, and Painting. There was a TV show in the US in which big artists demonstrated their painting techniques. That was the trigger of my art journey in the field of Art and I was exposed to a lot of techniques about which I was totally unaware of. But still, I was not sure about my career as an Artist. We came back to India and I started making paintings.
I got connected with many Artists via Facebook and started studying their works. Slowly I started gaining more confidence in drawing and painting as my work got better over a period of time. STAR: What artists inspire you.What is the source of inspiration? RASHMI SONI: I got inspired by many artists like Ana, Sadie Jernigan Valerie, Anthony Ryder, Bijay Biswaal, Vilas Tonape, Pramod Kurulekar, Prafull Sawant, Vasudev Kamath etc. Masterworks are full of life and the way they use colors gives an amazing look to the paintings. STAR: Why are you so passionate about ART? RASHMI SONI: Art is my life and it is a beautiful way to express myself and meditate.
STAR: How do you plan and begin work on a painting? How important are balance and tension? Do you use any form of dynamic symmetry or similar? RASHMI SONI: I plan for my new works. Sometimes I sketch on a small paper to see how the painting will look. The composition is an important part of the painting and an artist should not ignore it. There should be a balance in the object placement and harmony in colors as well as composition. The golden rule or dynamic symmetry helps with that. I try to follow the golden mean rule and the rule of thirds in my composition. I try to balance the color composition too. There should be a balance of cool and warm colors, the balance between complimentary colors and the role of background in the entire composition.
buddha sharnam gachhami
Buddha sharnam gachhami
STAR: What are you working STAR: What mediums do you on now, and what are your plans work in and why? for the future?
STAR: What obstacles do you face in making and exhibiting your work?
RASHMI SONI: I am working on a devotional theme-based series of paintings now. In future, I would like to work on Indian cultural heritage topics from mythological subjects to architecture. I want to depict these topics in my paintings so that our coming generation will know about our rich cultural heritage.
RASHMI SONI: Managing family is a big challenge, other issues like travel, scheduling etc are manageable.
RASHMI SONI: I work with Oil colors and watercolors mostly. I sparingly use Acrylic colors too. Being a wife and a mother of 2 wonderful sons I have to leave my palette very often and Acrylic medium does not allow me to do so and work in breaks.
STAR: What are your favorite works you have created? RASHMI SONI: All works are my favorite. Each one is a part of my soul.
uphill STAR: What is your average day like?
STAR: What other forms of creativity do you like?
RASHMI SONI: My day begins at 5 am in the morning with painting. After 7 am I help my children in getting ready for school and then I get ready for my work. I conduct classes at my Art School Shiny Colors. Sometimes I paint in the daytime as well. I prefer to paint in the morning hours. I have 2 days off in a week and I paint the whole day with very few breaks.
RASHMI SONI: I am a singer too. I sing and learn Hindustani Classical singing with my younger son. I do calligraphy, craft, designing my own dresses and stitching them too. I like to do embroidery on clothes. Crochet is another art I really like. Above all painting is my favorite art form and like to do without getting disturbed.
STAR: How does the social and political climate in your country and around the world impact your artistic expression?
STAR:Please tell us about your training in painting.
STAR: Any other advice for artists trying to get established?
RASHMI SONI: So far, the social and political climate in India has not impacted my work as I work on subjects which I like and these subjects are more related to mythology, nature and are spiritual in nature.
RASHMI SONI: I am a selftaught artist but I have had chances to learn with many masters like Vilas Tonape, Bijay Biswaal, Pramod Kurulekar, Prafull Sawant, Amit Kapoor, Ramesh Jhawar etc. I invite all great artists for workshops in Shiny Colors. I have not attended any formal training in Art. I have completed a diploma through a distance learning program.
RASHMI SONI: I would like to say to all budding artists to work hard and always remain open to learning. Do a lot of experiments and be always open to reviews and feedback.
STAR: How did your artworks become famous? RASHMI SONI: My artworks gain popularity through social media, exhibitions, and art shows prominently. STAR: Could you tell us some interesting facts about your life? RASHMI SONI: The most interesting fact of my life is that I could become an artist from being a Political Science lecturer. I feel blessed. 60
STAR: How have you been so successful with marketing and selling your art?
STAR: What style of art would you classify your work?
RASHMI SONI: There was a time when it was so hard to showcase your art, but now social media has made it very easy to showcase, market and sell your artworks. I take services of Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram for marketing and selling.
RASHMI SONI: My works of art are based on real-life subjects and not on abstract concepts. I try to retain the concept of light, shadow, and colors. I focus a lot on composition. A work of art should not be a copy of real-life subjects, it should reflect your creativity.
STAR: Any other advice for artists trying to get established? TAMALI DAS: We need to continue working truthfully and honestly irrespective of success. In the words of Rabindranath, “ Posterity awaits in this or next decade surely’. Every artist should honestly try to set up truth where establishment or reputation is not valuable. STAR: Please tell us about your training in painting TAMALI DAS: Inspired by my children’s art-training my artistry commenced. At the matured age I learned grammar and reality painting. Practicing for several years under the craftsmanship of that very factor, thereafter the journey to find my individuality begun. The road I have walked, am walking and will walk unconditionally. STAR: How does the social and political climate in your country and around the world impact your artistic expression? TAMALI DAS: In a nation’s social and political background my work is the mirror of society. In that very mirror, the Indian religious, philosophical and their deep inner meaning has reflected for the rest of the world for appreciation.
STAR: What are you working on? How much do the subject and composition evolve during the painting process? Could you say something about your painting process? TAMALI DAS: Currently, I have started a series about a girl and a cat. We have three cats in our house. They are very fond of my younger daughter I want to make a series about their love and bonding. Besides, I am also working on the paintings of Neomodernism. After deciding on the subject, I think about the composition. I make a draft at first required. I did this having a model for me. After the composition is final I began the canvas drawing, followed by coloring. Instead of galloping I end step by step like the 1st lone, 2nd lone, 3rd lone. Then I do the final finishing. STAR: Who are your current art inspirations? Do you look to other contemporary artist’s work during your artistic process? TAMALI DAS: I like many artists’ works like those of Prakash Karmakar, Anjali Ela, MD. Hussain Subrata G. I observe their work minutely but never copy them, and yet I dream of becoming great painters like them. I always try to have my individuality in my work but sometimes I take inspirations from other artist’s background color, dress color, and drawing while I need figure drawing my children come to use. Presently they are my models.
ST RTISTS STAR: Why did you prefer the color palette reflected in your work? TAMALI DAS: Color palette has a major rule in painting. Sometimes the color of reality, sometimes the color of conscience. The color of reality emerges from nature and is a known reality, whereas the color of convenience is born from profound feelings. In the words of artist Satish, “The chief role of color is to explore successfully the expressiveness of painting. STAR: What is your daily painting schedule like? You seem to have tremendous self-discipline. TAMALI DAS: I am very much punctual and disciplined by nature. Daily I paint for 3-4 hours. Usually, I paint from 11.00 a.m. to 1.00 pm. and from 9.00 pm. to 11.00 pm. Besides my painting, I maintain a discipline in my daily household works. Giving time to my family exercising regularly and going to sleep at proper time are my unchanged habits. Only they change while some celebrationstake place in my house. STAR: What is your favorite experience as an artist? TAMALI DAS: Passing through many hostile situations in my life my art of painting began.When I was able to show my first exhibition then my heart knew no bound of joy. My paintings are exhibited in a gallery, various people are arriving, appreciating my works. These where nice feelings. But my best feeling was on the last day of the exhibition when many people crowded in the gallery some buyers were wishing to buy my paintings and after some queries, they were buying them. This feeling can not be described in words. After the long seven years of hardships, humiliation, and many hostilities I have become a successful artist. This is my favorite experience as an artist.
STAR: What is your inspiration behind the series of paintings? TAMALI DAS: Being from a Bengali house I have to participate in various family ceremonies. One day I participated in the Gaye Halud (Haldi) ceremony in a marriage of my family. This ceremony and its holiness influenced me. Returning to home I made a painting on it. In that very year, the painting was bought by a newly married couple from an exhibition. From then a thought came to me of making a series of it. Bengali marriage is my first series. As I am a devotee of Lord Krishna’ I always try to obey his teaching in the Bhagvat Gita and his life. My second series is Lord Krishna series. Presently I am working on a series on Neomodernism. In our present society, the excitement about the mobile phone is in vague which affects our children and others. Hence I want to make the society well aware of the menace. STAR: What style of art would you classify your work? TAMALI DAS: A style is the reflection of one’s complete self. Continuous practice makes a habit and spontaneous exposure to create a style of work. Style comes out from a particular view, outlook, mentality, sense, awareness, and realization. It is nothing but person”s own self is the asset of that person. When we work we express our ingenuity. STAR: What role does the artist have in society? TAMALI DAS: If we go through the evaluation process of the society we can find that there is a strong role of artist and art itself is dependent on social consciousness. This is most important and ever-changing. Art always depicts and upholds the human values directly and establishes the logic, ethics, and morality of human society. An artist can do it as he/she is a person of awareness and ideology.
â€œHonesty, purity, and hard work are integral to the work of an Artist.Artists are the soul of the society. They work on concepts which cannot be objectified. They help to make the society beautiful and appreciableâ€? RASHMI SONI
Parvati and Ganesha STAR: Can you give suggestions to an upcoming artist? TAMALI DAS: Art is such a medium which has no shortcut.My opinion to those who are in this field that they should never try to copy others but love art. Paint right from the heart. Art is a meditation. Diligence, dexterity, and innovative thought must be executed. Art should be our everything. We should love to play with art as we do with our children. Life should be devoted to art. Then success must come to us.
Artist Tamali Das is extraordinarily creative and her paintings magnificently depict our culture in a beautiful exploration of art.The colors and the subjects outstandingly compel us to look deeper into the paintings and create awareness as to where we stand in the society in the present times. You can find more about Tamali Das on her website www.tamalidas.com
T H E L E N
Tina Thelen is a famous Photographer from West Lafayette, IN - the United States. Being a Still life and Nature Photographer, she always loved photography, and she is glad that she was able to pursue her dream. Her passion is still life and nature photography and hopes to express this through her photographs. Her love of photography also allowed her the opportunity to express herself through beautiful images. Her main focus is mostly macro photography, She loves photographing nature, insects, flowers, bugs, wildlife, animals. her other interests include ‘styled stock’ photography. “A true “geek girl” at heart! I love ALL things APPLE and my newest love is Photography! I absolutely LOVE LOVE LOVE my macro lens, and cannot believe the world holds so much beauty in such tiny creatures! I hope you enjoy my finds!!”Tina Thelen
STAR: Can you tell us a little about yourself? Where do you live and where are you from? How long has photography been a hobby and career of yours and what motivated you to get started? TINA THELEN: I have always been interested in photography, starting at a young age. I come from a small town in the midwest (Indiana) and have lived there all my life. I love nature and the outdoors, and this has inspired me to delve deeper into the aspect of being a professional photographer.
STAR: Which Equipment do you use?What type of camera do you shoot with? TINA THELEN: I started out many years ago with a Polaroid instant camera, and didnâ€™t get back into photography as a career until later in life. I currently shoot with a Canon 5D MarkIII and shoot with my 100mm macro and 50mm 1.4 art lens. STAR: Who are your favorite photographers and what influence have they had on your work? TINA THELEN: Ansel Adams, of course; and I have gotten acquainted with several photographers through Creative Live including Ben Wilmore; Lindsey Adler and Sue Bryce, to name a few.
The Red Cardinal
Oldtrunk by the window 72
STAR: What are you working on now, and what are your plans for the future? TINA THELEN: I just recently got accepted into the Archangel site for professional photography uploads. I am focusing my business on more of the still life group, mostly flowers, and food. STAR: What kind of challenges do you usually face while shooting? TINA THELEN: My biggest challenge is light, as I choose to shoot ONLY in natural light. When the days are too sunny, the light is too harsh; and when itâ€™s overcast, it tends to cast a gray shadow; so I am always looking for the perfect light and perfect window combination.
STAR: How do you deal with the wide variety of climatic conditions for landscapes? How does living in a country with such vastness and variation affect your approach to landscape photography? TINA THELEN: I donâ€™t do much landscape photography. I would say 90% of my photos are indoors. STAR: What are your favorite subjects that inspire you more? TINA THELEN: I am constantly trolling the Instagram feed for new ideas, and follow some really awesome photographers for inspiration. STAR: Please tell us about your training in photography? TINA THELEN: I am Self-taught.
Peonies near window
STAR: What is your average day like? TINA THELEN: I spend most of my “photo shoot” hours in the mornings, and tend to edit in the afternoons and evenings. STAR: What other forms of creativity do you like? TINA THELEN: I enjoy dining out; walking and bike rides. 74
The biggest hurdle for me was to NOT compare myself to others. We are all unique and bring a unique perspective to photography as we see it through the camera lens. The other thing is to SHOOT daily, even if it seems trivial. Practice, practice, practice!!!
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Blue winter STAR: What are the key elements of your photographic education? TINA THELEN: I spent many hours on Creative Live watching several classes from famous photographers. STAR: How does the social and political climate in your country and around the world impact your artistic expression? TINA THELEN: This doesnâ€™t really apply to my area of photography !
ST RTISTS A true “geek girl” at heart! I love ALL things APPLE and my newest love is Photography! I absolutely LOVE LOVE LOVE my macro lens, and cannot believe the world holds so much beauty in such tiny creatures! I hope you enjoy my finds!!
olddoor with wildflowers
Bura jo dekhan mai chala, buran a miliya koi, Jo khoji man aapno, mujse Buran a koi Looking around for bad, I found none, When searched within, I am the One
Eminent Artist Gayatri Mehta was born and brought up in Mumbai and works as a professional visual artist.
Having a multifaceted career, previously worked as Interior Designer as a partner in Space Designers; as Visiting Faculty in Kala Vidya Sankul, Raheja College, ISDI; as Coordinator in Jindal Centre for the Arts. She has served various Art Societies and Associations in various capacities being the Hon Secretary for the VA Mali Centenary Fund; the Ex-Hon. Secretary of the Art Society of India and as Ex-Joint Secretary of the Bombay Art Society; being on the Advisory Board on Silver Jubilee Committee of Art Plaza Associations: She has represented the India Art and Design Online Magazine as a Curator for Make in India Program in Mumbai, where she presented the Talk on “Survival of Indian Art and Craft in digital era”. She has conducted a workshop on Portrait and Landscape painting at KCA, Ahmedabad. As a Founder Trustee of The Portrait Artist’s Group, supporting Renowned and Veteran Artist Vasudeo Kamath,is devoted to the promotion and conservation of Representational Art and Artists. She has also been invited to demonstrate her painting skills by various organizations; on judging panels of competitions held by many Institutions; for giving lectures in Art Camps and Art Workshops. She has written articles in reputed magazines and is on the panel of Translators for the Biographical Encyclopedia of Visual Artists of Maharashtra, the project of Pundole Art Gallery. 83
STAR: When and where were you born.Tell us about your background and how did your life as an artist begin.Tell us about your education. How you developed your skills over the time. How do you find the artistic journey so far? GAYATRI MEHTA: I was born and brought up in Vileparle, Mumbai. In 1959, after my Architect father’s early death in January, I was born in May. Having not seen my father, I was showered with special care, love and attention by family and especially my mother. In spite of financial constraints, I was always provided with colors, books and lot many children’s’ magazines. Above all, we all, my brother and sisters were raised with the total broadminded outlook of life with freedom to be just ourselves. My mother was not formally educated but a very literate person of the Gujarati folk Culture and Indian mythological stories. From the beginning she told stories of high moral values, she would sing Gujarati songs and bhajans while cooking, she would draw folk symbols of birds and animals from numbers on my slate. My father an eminent Architect, felicitated in 1959, by Hon. President of India for his selfless services in the building of Hospital, school, and other projects, had a passion for photography, music, sketching and driving. I don’t remember when I started drawing. But as far my memory reaches I remember of making a war scene with airplanes in a Children’s competition may be after 1964 war, and my Uncle praised me to look at my painting amongst other paintings displayed at Jehangir Art gallery. School drawing teacher encouraged to go further and my Mother took me to all competitions to get prizes. Due to circumstances, could not pursue Art Education, and joined NM College of Commerce and Economics representing my College in various literature and art competitions, winning various awards, out of which the Mood Indigo National Level prize is of worth mention. A small exhibition of my drawings was first held by the Hobby Centre of N M College. Principal Dr. U R Koli and Prof. Bharat Nayak, at N M College, supported and encouraged by providing books. I remember having studied Picasso and Van Gogh in my Commerce College Library. Prof. Bharatbhai took me to gallery visits and made me learn to look and appreciate art. 84
After studying Masters in Gujarati Literature joined S V T College of Home Science as a Lecturer and there I had the Treasure found. The Library of SNDT Women’s University at Juhu Campus, Mumbai, was loaded with books on Art. I spent all my spare time studying various artists, art history of West and East, Indian Miniatures, design, aesthetics and how to paint and draw series. I would keep on sketching, copying books since Mobile was unavailable and Xerox was expensive. My most enriching years of art education were spent here improving my knowledge in Art. My Brother is also an architect, and at SVT College I met Bharati that made me select the carrier of an Interior Designer. As a partner for Space Designers, we had a successful profession for more than 25 years. Which gave me financial security, a studio, and I could make a small library of art books. The undercurrent of my passion was driving me closer to my dream of living my art. I joined The Art Society of India in 1996 and my wish to live as an Artist got germinated. With eminent artists V A Mali, Prafulla Dahanukar, John Fernandes, V D Joshi, B R Kulkarni, Babubhai Mistry and other artists I started learning the practical process of creating art. In Art Society of India, due to study sessions for drawing from life, painting en -plein air on the spot, gave a real understanding of form, space, design, color schemes, and compositions. Being the study circle in charge and later as the Hon. Secretary revived the study sessions thrice a week and also started studying figure drawing and painting from nude models. Art Society of India gave me the confidence to live as an artist. I exhibited my first Solo Show of Manohar Mumbai, Beautiful Bombay, a tribute to my City; then the journey began with many more shows to come, organizing and witnessing many Demos of eminent artists nurtured the learning of nuances of painting and gradually my passion turned into Profession. In between, I did my Masters in Drawing and Painting from SNDT Women’s University giving the external examination. This made me study History of arts and Aesthetics as well, deep rooting the understanding of Art overall. My passion for painting Portraits for life leads me to do a full-time study of MVA with Portraiture at SNDT Women’s University at the age of 53. It was a unique experience with a lot of fun painting all day, and exploring the possibilities of conceptual portraits.
ST RTISTS I even went to Saint Petersburg, Russia to study Figure and Portrait drawing and painting Summer School, at Repin Institute, an age-old Imperial Art Academy. It added great knowledge of Colour intricacies and importance of rendering. Participating in various shows, exhibiting in various Galleries with the group, with institutions and for Charity shows, exploring and expressing self through concepts for solo exhibitions has given challenges and the outcoming creations have given immense satisfaction and love from all. STAR: Your works are based on your inspiration from Sant Kabir’s Dohas.Can you explain why you say his teachings are more relevant today in the world? GAYATRI MEHTA: Sant Kabir was an explorer of the truth, a seeker of peace and a rebel to expose the fallacy and futility of age-old preaching followed by faith blind people; the exploitation of such faith fools by the vested interests in the name of religion, caste, creed etc. The people who came to hear him were of the lower class, mostly workers, artisans and neglected ones. He had to convey to them the revelations of his ardent search in such a way so as to reach to them the essence of all religions, the humanity. So he conveyed these mammoth truths in simple day to day language with everyday metaphors and symbols. Today, after six hundred years, we are at the same point where in spite of globalization; scientific discoveries and innovations. We are still divided by political, economic and social invasions.The humanity is yearning for peace and harmony. This calls for Kabir’s wisdom to search within the meaning of existence. Since Kabir repeatedly asks to reach within the energy which binds all alike -the whole of universe and galaxies to the smallest particle of sand. It is this phenomenon of commonality which Science has proved. So only Kabir reaches the young minds with rebellious and exploring attitude.
STAR: Tell us more about your installations. What is the message you intend to convey to our society? GAYATRI MEHTA: I wanted to express Kabir in a universal language, Painting is an indispensable tool, but somehow, while contemplating on his creations, the third dimension was forcing to enter in my thoughts, so I envisaged some of his most compelling poems as installations. Since according to Kabir, everything is momentary, frail and futile, Installations are the perfect expressions of this idea and for Kabir, this body is just an envelope to cover the Soul, so to assert to this, I used only packing materials like used corrugated boards and sheets, brown papers, packing tape, Jute and burlap & newspapers to make these installations. His very famous couplet Bura jo dekhan mai chala, buran a miliya koi, Jo khoji man aapno, mujse Buran a koi Looking around for bad, I found none, When searched within, I am the One I created an Installation of Picture Booth with ugly faces from Newspapers and Brown Papers ‘stitching the same on Jute sacks. It was an experiment where I made a hole for keeping face to click a pic with these ugly faces, thus asserting the Couplet of Kabir. This also pleased the young selfie-loving crowd, and they got connected with the message in a lighter way.
STAR: Tell us about your recent Art show in Jehangir Art Gallery, Mumbai? GAYATRI MEHTA: Jehangir Art Gallery is THE place where an Artist from any part of India, dreams to exhibit his or her talent. I am blessed to have my third Solo exhibition here. After a lengthy process, one gets the Gallery not earlier than four years from the previous show. So when I got the confirmation, I was excited. You want to put your best, so after undergoing tremendous pressure of selecting the subject from n possibilities, I finally decided to go for my most preferred Kabir. I always wanted to make conceptual compositions of Kabirâ€™s ever relevant poems. Being comfortable to convey through figures and portraits till now, I went out of frame in search of a new visual vocabulary. It was a big challenge. After studying Kabir through various books by various authors in different languages, the Kabir of my thoughts started emerging in a way never imagined before. Various symbols, metaphors, and surreal pictorials engulfed the verses to images.I was specific that I do not want to narrate any incidences involved with Kabir as a person. For me, Kabir is a thought process of any seeker of truth. His revelations of various stages of his journey are vivid but sometimes contradictory. But explorations are inspiring to start a journey within each of us. With hearing Kabir constantly while painting, while conceptualizing as sung by Classical Masters Bhimsen Joshi, Kumar Gandharva, Kishori Amonkar , Veena Sahastrabuddhe to Rahul Deshpande and Abida Parveen ;from folk singers Prahladsinghji Tipania to modern Neeraj Arya and his Band Kabir CafĂŠ, relishing each word, dancing at the rhythm and Painting, was a meditative exhilaration brought down on canvasses.My pallet changed, my composition changed, somewhere inside Kabir was changing me to live life simply as an incident connecting to the universal truth. 86
ST RTISTS â€œI painted 17 paintings with different color schemes, using different methods, from surreal, to creative to abstract compositions. Some poems demanded subtle greys and earth tones and some were singing with perfect bright and intense color schemes. Even sculptures, installations emerged to convey Kabir. I surrendered to the demands of each couplet or poem, losing myself to the mighty wisdom of Kabir, me being just the instrument to flow the eternal notes of Kabirâ€?.
Ram naam rasbhini_devout
mai bhi ho gayi laal_red drenched
ST RTISTS STAR: Tell us about your color palette.Which color schemes and preferences you apply and how often do you find them contemplating enough to reach your desired goal in your artistic process. GAYATRI MEHTA: I am bound to earth as an artist, though my mind wanders high beyond the sky. So generally my pallet consists of earth and grey tones. Being Portrait and Figurative compositions artist, it suits me. Plus subtle Greys convey the subtle thought process effectively, so I was always afraid of loud color schemes. I always try to paint middle key.
STAR: How would you conceptualize the thought and how do you start your work? Can you tell us about your painting process a bit?
GAYATRI MEHTA: I thoroughly study the subject I intend to paint. I read I hear, I explore and then for a few days I contemplate doing nothing in particular. Then the process of germination takes place, at midnight, on early mornings the visions get sprouts and again I explore possibilities of building visual vocabulary and mentally creating the images to convey the concept. I make rough sketches, doodles and scribbles, make and break process are often STAR: Your work is noted for its tiring but when you foresee a strong design of complex subjects. Do path emerging, you get excited to you make small preliminary roughs move onto the untrodden land. or value studies? Blank Canvass is alluring, having the depth of sky and sea, impregGAYATRI MEHTA: Yes, I make nated with endless probabilities. rough sketches and tonal value preComing to conclusion is risky, liminaries to the scale of my canvass. often elusive, but the compulsive Sometimes I even make color thumb- ideas which have an urgency to nails. It gives a basic idea of compo- take an avatar, make you take sition. brush and colors and force your hands to move in their desired directions. Thatâ€™s how a painting is born.
STAR: I have noticed that you choose strong subjects to create art.What do you look forward to, when you are settling for the potential subject matter. What is most integral to the work of an artist? GAYATRI MEHTA: Painting is a visual Language for some, for others it is simply a visual phenomenon. For me, any visual art is a form, a visual pattern which appeals first to the eyes and then to the mind. But a form without content is often an empty box, however beautiful, it does not provoke thoughts and feelings. So my paintings are backed by some strong message but I do take care they are paintings first and so I take caution, not to overindulge in thoughts alone so I let free my visual appeal in its own way on to the canvass or in Installations to create visual patterns.
STAR: What was your process of creation and composition in your previous series of paintings? GAYATRI MEHTA: In my previous series, I had visual references ready, I had to reconstruct, recompose to create conceptual creations. The challenge was limited. Previous exhibitions “Manohar Mumbai” was actual landscapes painted en plein air , choosing different spots of Mumbai, the Horse series emerged from some actual photos taken during Pushkar Fair visit, Children and childhood is an ever haunting quest for all, for me too, the images of children while travelling around , provided inspiration to make “Above Everything.. “series in 2014. Through them, I conveyed the truths of life.
STAR: How has our society influenced your art. Do you draw inspiration from any other resources? Who inspire you? What is your source of inspiration? Every artist has their own unique style of working to brings out their creativity in their work, what style or information is that which you intend to project through your paintings. GAYATRI MEHTA: I am I because of all and everything around me. Being an Indian, much of spiritual readings, exploring of various thoughts pertaining to this existence has been of great interest from adolescence. Death has overshadowed my birth and so finding the meaning of life has been my major concern. Right from early years of understanding, reading literature, hearing spiritual seekers was a part of my being. So everyday events leave a different impression on me. Often the normal people around, in their candid gestures, inspire to think very literally, into a separate context than what I see them into. These visions find their place onto my creations. I am a person of people, with their small sorrows and big joys, how they live, each with a unique approach. The earth so beautiful, the nature around so amazing, our existence so wonderful.. and the Ultimate Energy so blissful, to love, to rejoice, to express with Godâ€™s gift to paint, sing, dance, create poems. I avoid making a signature style, I believe constant working gives your work a subtle identity. Thatâ€™s enough for me, rather than striving to deliberately opt for one and getting trapped into it and limiting the power of expression. My subjects, my goal to express them decide how to put forth my color schemes, my composition, and my rendering. Sometimes in a single exhibition, I experiment different ways to express my thoughts. 91
STAR: Any artists influenced your work or style? GAYATRI MEHTA: From young days, I admired Picasso, Van Gogh, then with my deeper understandings I fell in love with Michelangelo, Rembrandt, Velazquez, Degas, Ilya Repin, Ivan Shishkin, Norman Rockwell, Sargent, Anders Zorn, Grigariscu and then Richard Schmidt, David Leffel, Gerard Richter, Jeffery Watts, Scott Burdick to Quiang Hong amazed me. In India, my first and foremost beloved artist is, was and will be John Fernandes who enchanted by strong visual elements. Then the conceptual compositions of Vasudeo Kamath, Suhas Bahulkar, Manojkumar Sakale, Colour Abstractions with beautiful Renderings of Praffull Sawant and Rajesh Sawant, Satyajeet Warekar; all these Masters have inspired me in one way or the other.
war waded STAR: We live in a society where we do have some social responsibility. As an artist what is the role model for an artist to have a lot of impact on the society? GAYATRI MEHTA: Every Artist is a member of Society, so one can never live making an isolated Island of an imaginary world. Artist has a special perception capacity to interpret the visionary aspects of the world in his unique way. Moreover, Artist is gifted and with his hard work has acquired skills to render his perceptions and concepts in the visual phenomenon, which touches Society at large and individuals at subtle levels. His creations often trigger a deep sense of blissful pleasure beyond words. A picture speaks in a universal language and has more potential to reach out to human senses. With these gifts an Artist can definitely be a spokesperson of a Society, a rebel to convey the anguish of downtrodden, a sympathizer of less privileged and a provocative for social changes through his paintings and a visionary to convey special of an ordinary thing, place or person; a singer of joy of existence in colours inexpressible by people at large. 94
STAR: There are many problems in the society and we need to solve the problem. An artist can help the society in finding the solution to the problem through his artwork. Do you believe so and how far have you been successful in this aspect? GAYATRI MEHTA: My paintings on Children have conveyed people the current status of overburdened Children, loss of their childhood pleasures and nostalgic feelings of loss of Games of our days, in my exhibition “Above Everything…” In the previous Exhibition, I received a tremendous response of elderly people getting touched at heart, some of them literally cried, some rejoiced the paintings. Some went into the nostalgia of their own childhood…As an Artist, these experiences are very enriching.
In search of self
Dream of venus
STAR: As an experienced educator and having achieved so many honors in the art field. What is your advice to upcoming artists? GAYATRI MEHTA: I strongly believe that an Artist is blessed with the power to express. So one has to maintain the gratitude to the Almighty and compassion for the world fraternity. One has to be Honest with oneself to explore and express the Truth revealed during the journey. Art is a process of self-evolution. Constant involvement and dedicated commitment to Art is utmost necessary to pursue the passion for Art.
STAR: What is the best moment in your life in your artistic journey? GAYATRI MEHTA: When Indiaâ€™s Prime Minister Shri Narendra Modi was at his last days of his being the Chief Minister of Gujarat, I was invited to present him his painted Portrait and also to make one from life while he addressed the function. I was more than thrilled, excited and also little afraid. He was under tight Security and I was given a place to arrange my easel at least fifteen feet away. There was no proper light and he was not steady on Dias, since he was not aware of me making his portrait. In a few minutes the portrait in Charcoal was ready. The portrait which was presented to him, I had inscribed the lines from his poem. I was called upon stage when Urmila Kanoria, the founder Chairperson of Kanoria Centre for the Arts, presented him the portrait made by me. I greeted him personally. And also presented him his charcoal portrait for his signature. That is the best moment of my life. My role model, our inspiration for National Spirit, and a living legend of our time was just one foot away. signing the portrait made by me. I feel I was blessed for that moment.
STAR: Would you tell us some interesting experiences of your life. GAYATRI MEHTA: While painting Afghan Church in Colaba area of South Mumbai for my show on Manohar Mumbai, I felt flattered at the kind gesture of One Naval Officerâ€™s wife. When I was totally involved painting for more than an hour, someone tapped my shoulder with a glass of lemonade in a tray with sandwiches, it indeed was a pleasant surprise since it was hot and it was need of that hour.. I looked at the person with a question mark.. and she pointed me to the 6 floor of the tall building, someone was waving at me. She told me that the Naval Officerâ€™s wife is watching you painting for last one hour and has sent this for you. I go for sketching whenever we visit out. One man of above sixty approached me that his mother is above 85 and he wants to present her with her portrait sketch and asked if I could make one. I said if she can sit for half an hour, she readily agreed and sat in front. The elderly person had a glow in her eyes, of a contented and accomplished life. It was fun drawing her, while she shared her story of life continuously talking. For me, it was a challenge to get those expressions with her constant movements. Then I received so many emails of thanks from all her children, Grandchildren, living in different parts of the world. That was the earning of the day for me.
STAR: From an interior decorator to becoming an renowned artist is quite exemplary .Share your thoughts about this magazine which is intended to bring into spotlight the brilliance of women artists in India .Thank you . GAYATRI MEHTA: I was a lecturer, organizer and an interior designer, but all the time the Artist within dominated the journey. It guided the route sitting quietly on shoulders and finally made me land on the terrains much desired always. I feel this magazine is truly a blessing for Artists. Since the media is captured by money manipulation, some sincere artists are not getting enough attention. For giving their efforts due respect and bringing them in lime light deserved by them is a great service you are doing to the Art Fraternity. Art has been used as a therapy to keep away from depression. So rich women facing menopausal symptoms turn towards arts. Their riches and their craving for recognition make them rush towards publicity, without many a times putting hard work. This has made media, money oriented and the seriously committed Artists, who have spent a life for creating art are pushed aside. At this juncture what this magazine is contributing is worth a worthy mention.. 102
STAR: You are an amazing portrait artist. Which are your best works so far and can you suggest tips to aspiring portrait artists? GAYATRI MEHTA: During my MVA years, we had to submit one self-portrait assignment per semester. For me it was a challenge, so I decided to make conceptual self-portraits and all were very different and very unique. Before many years I made self-portraits with my mother and father to convey my missing feel. The best joyous experience is of making a Portrait of my Singer, Artist friend CS Pant. While he sang some beautiful numbers of my favorite singer at a Karaoke Session at his residence, I painted him with his signature style of singing and the pleasure of his velvety voice I expressed in an abstract pattern in the background. It was a memorable evening. Those who love the art of Portrait painting, should study from life and not from photographs. They should try to imbibe in the facial anatomy and they should be utmost honest to the Model, and the medium they are using .Just creating a portrait of someone without considering that special features of that one who is posing for you is disgusting and derogatory to the art of Portraiture. Contrary to the idea of some Art critics and curators of not considering Portraiture as an art form, I strongly believe that Portrait painting has survived the Photographic invasion and also the selfie invasion it will outgrow, because Man by nature likes to be recognized by another human being. When an Artist paints you, you have an increased self-esteem and the feeling of being special. As long as that instinct of self-recognition will survive, the art of Portrait Painting and sculpting will not be endangered. 103
Artist Gayatri Mehta is outstandingly brilliant in her contribution to Art and leaves us mesmerized with her simplicity ,ease and expertise to capture every aspect of life on the canvas .The magazine salutes her for her magnificent contribution to Art and our society .
Embroidery Artist Jaya Chala creates mesmerizing portraits of everyday people using cotton thread. Her work was presented to many foreign and Indian dignitaries â€“ Presidents and CEOs.She often transforms portraits using sewing techniques to create exquisitely detailed and intricate work. One of the most impressive ways to bridge the link between craft and fine art is through this work. These pieces may not fit within the confines of traditional fine art media, but nonetheless, capture the hearts of collectors. Galleries are more inclined to showcase pieces of this nature than ever before. Jaya Chala is briilliant with the embroidery paintings which despite no formal training in art, she has found a niche in creating intensely crafted works that express fully the colors of the world.
ST RTISTS STAR: Tell us about “Human moods in thread”, an artists journey JAYA CHALA: Human Moods in Thread, is dedicated to my husband Dr. B. S. Venkatachala, who always encouraged me to pursue this art form with his critical comments and a keen eye for perfection. If not for him, I would have given up the long time back. Human Moods in the thread. The essence of what you see and compose and go on to create the same brings you immense joy and at the same time want others to enjoy it as well. In my work, I have tried to portray various moods of my subject with mere colored thread. For me, the most difficult part is to mix colors to give the exact shade of the skin tone or light and shade to the desired effect. Changing the thread every time is very laborious and needs a lot of patience, sometimes to get a single expression on a face, it may require at least 50 to 75 shades of skin tone colors! Then there is no undoing it, each stitch is final.
STAR: How did it all begin? The painterly quality of your embroidered work has been likened to that of the Impressionists. Is this a conscious choice or is it more a virtue of the embroidery medium itself? How has your education in painting influenced your thread work? JAYA CHALA: My first introduction to this art was way back in 1960 when my mother encouraged me to take classes in machine embroidery. She was an embroidery lover and did exquisite work by hand. One day, my brother Jagdish brought an intricate painting of African dancers and challenged me to reproduce it in the thread. I had been learning machine embroidery from an old Parsee lady. She taught me how to embroider the usual things like flowers and birds for tablecloth sofa covers. So when my brother challenged me I was all ready and said I would reproduce the same image with accuracy. It fascinated me to imagine how I would use the needle and thread like brush strokes. Well, I did in two months, and to my surprised brother got hooked on it and then there was no looking back. My brother still has it framed in his home. It was beyond my family’s expectation! I started sketching my subjects who were mainly children, women and old men. To understand the colors I would watercolor them first before reproducing them on cloth. It was tedious and tough but I made it!
STAR: What inspires and influences the designs you create for your work? JAYA CHALA: I came to realize that breaking the monotony of embroidered flowers and birds, it would be a leap to create masterpieces from the thread. It took me several years to hone this art and my turning point came when I participated in the Modi thread competition and won prizes consecutively for three years. I got offers to participate in group exhibitions, and collectors also approached me to buy my work. I did not know what value to put to my work. Even Christies, an auction house in London said it was priceless and did not know what should be the reserve price for my work. A dear friend from Canada visited us on their silver wedding anniversary and I presented them with a piece of my art. When they went back they got it evaluated and then sent me a heck of a handsome amount, which of course I never accepted, as it was a gift! Responses were tremendous and least expected! This motivated me to create more and I pushed myself to yet another level of perfection.
Kumbh Mela Series 114
Embroidery on Linen 115
Kumbh Mela Series
Kumbh Mela Series 117
Kumbh Mela Series
ST RTISTS STAR: Why are you so passionate about this form of ART? JAYA CHALA: When we have a deep desire to achieve something in life we always get a path to take which lead us there. This is what I have always told my daughters – Nivedita and Maitreyi. With this life lesson, I am sure they will achieve whatever they desire in life and be content. This creativity has brought me a lot of fulfillment and contentment in my life and life seems worth living. When one’s work is appreciated, it is the greatest reward for the artist. I like to select my subject very carefully so that it creates a bridge between my art and the viewer. It should touch the person’s heart.
STAR: what inspired you to design and create the series “Kumbh Mela” JAYA CHALA: It was an amazing sight with so many people from all walks of life. I have not seen so much of color and activity. Religion was so joyful here. There were so much camaraderie and bonding with bhajans and artist at every nook and corner. We camped for a couple of days and I sketched my subjects, some posed joyfully, some got angry and some I sketched by hiding behind tents and trees not to disturb them. STAR: Can you give suggestions to upcoming embroidery artist? JAYA CHALA: Above all the final impact has to study many many times to get that expression. I love to see the expression of the viewer after it is finished and closely watch the emotions.Eventually, the final impact comes only after thoughtfully framing it. All I can say is for a good embroidery you need is imagination, patience, and perseverance. My husband always said, “Hard work is an investment which never fails”
STAR: How have you been so successful with marketing and selling your art? JAYA CHALA: I can proudly share, that my work was presented to many foreign and Indian dignitaries – Presidents and CEOs. Today I am still creating art after 50 years. I also dabble in other media like oils, acrylic, watercolors, Tanjore, and sketching.As I am getting on in age so I want to chronicle my works for my daughters and present them my lifetime legacy as a gift to them. My every embroidery tells a story, be it from the angry acetic from Kumbha Mela or a coy Adivasi bride from Hyderabad, a proud grandfather with his grandson or a street musician from Mussoorie. All my subjects were real people with stories and happily posed for me. STAR: Thankyou for sharing your precious time and beautiful thoughts with us .
S E R G E E V A
Galina Alexandrovna Sergeeva was born in Russia, in the city Voronezh. She Graduated from Art College. She is an Art and Drawing faculty of Kursk Pedagogical University, holding a Diploma on the thesis - a series of landscapes “Historical places of Gurzuf” and the accompanying article devoted to the features of teaching the open-air painting. A few years, she worked as a teacher of painting and drawing at the Art School in Voronezh,then she was engaged in interior and furniture design. Besides easel painting has studied bases and history of origin Palekh (lacquer miniature painting in Old Russian tradition), also an icon painting. Worked on various projects in this area, including within some years Galina painted the iconostasis of an Assumption Church in of the Dicese of Lipetsk, Russia.Galina finds inspiration in nature: flowers,incredible mountain landscapes of Crimea, the magic of old historical streets Indian and Russian cities, the beauty of faces of interesting and talented people…The favorite places for painting an open-air –Crimea and India. Her latest solo show was on 25 January to 28 February 2017 at the Palace of Congresses,Saint Petersburg.Works are in private collections of Russia,Germany, Japan, France, Canada, the USA, Poland, Denmark, Sweden, etc. the countries In her short interview with me, I could find and know so much about her inspiration,dedication and the passion behind this extraordinary artist.
STAR: Thank you for taking out your precious time to talk with us.Enlighten us more as to why are you so passionate about ART? GALINA.S:I enjoy the creativity, meeting, talking and sharing ideas with other creative people. STAR: An Artist is exposed to many demanding and absorbing situations in the artistic journey. What do you love about life, and what do you hate? GALINA.S: I love... beautiful people with light inner energy and beautiful actions (acts). Hate... meanness, narrow-mindedness !
STAR: How did you become an Artist? GALINA.S: I guess thanks to my motherâ€™s encouragement She handed me a pencil when I was just one year old. I canâ€™t remember this fact, but she told that everybody around accused her that a child may hurt her eyes.Well, the consequences were heavier, not for eyes, but for the family - the child became an artist... My first teachers were my parents. I remember how my father used to paint landscapes, especially mountains using watercolor, I was five years old that time. My Mother too painted along with me houses and plants, the album of that time seemed like a fairy-tale world, which certainly must be animated.
STAR: What artist inspires you? What is the source of inspiration? GALINA.S: There are many names, at different stages, we turn to the knowledge to learn from people with different experience. But if to speak about someone forever- itâ€™s Vincent Van Gogh and Mikhail Vrabel. Optical light effects of their painting are mesmerizing...and gives strength...Also is the open-air painting of the KonstantinKorovin. His feeling of color and subtle transmission of air medium is too close to my soul.
STAR: And what about your workplace? GALINA.S: In general I paint from nature. So, my workplace is where my nature...is the lovely themes - landscapes of the small streets with own history, still-lifeâ€™s and portraits of interesting people, life close-up.
STAR: What is your suggestion to paint a beautiful portrait? GALINA.S: An effective way to convey an emotion in a portrait painting is through the brushstroke.Delicate, detailed portraits often carry a certain sensitivity and thoughtful strokes. An artist using rough, larger brushstrokes approach for portrait painting from a different, more expressive angle. Adding different elements to composition also plays a vital role. An artist might choose to depict a person exactly as they are or remove scars or any flaws, sometimes even exaggerate a personâ€™s features.But on the whole keeping in view of the focal point, one can create a great composition or painting.
STAR: What inspires you to paint portraits? GALINA.S: Portraits are a visual representation of a person.They also give us a chance to study the essence of an individual as well an effective and much compelling way to tell much enough on the subject.Most of the times portraits donâ€™t reveal all about the personality.The viewer is drawn to the painting and sometimes they are much engrossing. Painting portraits I could understand many facets of human expression, sometimes pertaining to a particular country or region, how the features are different.It gives a wider perspective, draws the attention of viewers to the painting and also engages attention.Sometimes portraits speak of biography or tell us a story, every time I chose to paint a person. 127
STAR: Can you throw some light on your stilllife artworks? GALINA.S: I draw a lot of inspiration from nature, especially flowers.Every time I chose to paint a particular flower, it is very interesting to study the color and nature of each species of the flower.I make floral arrangements and then arrange to see if my composition is captivating to the eyes and then study the light and shade that would make my paintings look bright and beautiful as I want to project.
STAR: Could you tell us some interesting facts about your life? GALINA.S: My travel to different nations and meet different people from all walks of life always makes it interesting.Life study is something I love and it helps me better day by day in my art pursuits.
ST RTISTS STAR: What is your advice to the upcoming artists who wish to paint portraits, landscapes or still-life? GALINA.S: Simply I would suggest more and more to draw from nature, Only this way it is possible to understand inner sense of subject completely what you want to do. It’s not only technique..it’straining of intellect in general. And love... Whatever we are doing. we have to love this... As told one my good friend, very talented Russian painter: “When you organize some still-life’s nature, at first - fall in love with it, then paint!”
STAR: What are your suggestions to the artists trying to establish themselves? GALINA.S: It is surprising how few art students have any idea of what it is that constitutes art.I would suggest to follow your heart , feel and love everything you paint.Every small step is a stepping stone and it is essential artists work with patience and determination. Passion for art makes the way!
â€œSince my childhood, I have been encouraged and motivated to choose the art profession. I think when we pursue our dream and put everyday effort, the paintings are great. Never limit your thought and work. Whether it is landscape or interior scenes are transformed into vessels for explorations into the light, volume, and formâ€? Galina Sergeeva .....
B H A G V A T I
Artist Bhagvati Nathwas attracted by the beautiful world
and she has travelled to see many of the amazing sights of the world,all her life . She lived in beautiful places – London (where she studied & was awarded BA hons. in Social Anthropology); Verona in Italy (where she taught English & wrote for the Rough Guides (Penguin, London) and various magazines for 8 years); 9 years in the Himalayas (where she helped run an ashram with her husband, an Indian and their daughter Maya) and tropical beach of Goa, in India, where she lives now as a professional artist and teacher. Eventually the beauty was so much for her she had to paint it. She says ! I was always ‘good at art’. I passed U.K. national exams in art aged 16 and 18, and studied for a year at St. Albans College of Art, (Herts. UK). But then I became distracted by writing and words. It was in 2001, inspired by the Himalayas, mesmerized by the recurring patterns in mountains, rocks, trees and water, that I started to paint ‘seriously’, trying to reproduce what I saw. When I moved to Goa it was the twisted, gnarled trees that spoke to me. I also found I enjoyed painting animals – patterns, fur, whiskers, - and even discovered patterns in people’s faces, eyes & skin tone.
N A T H
In her Interview With STARTISTS ,She vividly tells us her experience of life and Art .
STAR: When and where were you born? Tell me about your background. Where did your life as an artist begin? BHAGVATI NATH: I was born in the U.K. where I also went to school and University. My parents were English, and my upbringing was typically English. I was a child in the 60s and a teenager in the 70s – good music, good books, ok movies, a prosperous time when we all believed we could do and be what we wanted. I was very good at art whilst at school, taking ‘0’ and ‘A’ levels, and a year at St. Albans College of Art in Herts, UK. But then I traveled for 18 months and decided to take my degree in Social Anthropology, (SOAS, London University) when I got involved with ‘the Power of the Word’. After graduating in 1985, I moved to Italy, where I taught English; researched, wrote and edited for
The Rough Guides and wrote various articles and short stories; and bathed in Italian culture for 8 years, as well as having some interesting journeys during the long school vacations. I started painting again when I lived in the Indian Himalayas, helping my Indian husband run an ashram and bringing up our young daughter, inspired by the shades of grey of the slate and granite rocks, and the vast variety of greens, the goats, and the immense mountains. I wrote a children’s book about our life, was asked to provide some paintings for a hotel in Manali – Himalayan landscapes – and my career as a professional artist began.”Bhagvati Nath”- This is the name my Indian husband gave me, not the name my parents gave me. I have ‘worn’ it for 24 years, so it’s definitely mine!!
ST RTISTS STAR: What artists inspire you.What is the source of inspiration? BHAGVATI NATH :I like the Italian Renaissance painters – pure realism (of style, not subject) and good light. But more than artists, it is a reality that inspires me. I paint what I see, as the world around me is so beautiful, the trees, flowers, birds, animals. STAR: Why are you so passionate about ART? BHAGVATI NATH: I’m not sure I’m passionate about art. I’m passionate about Life, about dancing, about Love. Painting, drawing, is something I just HAVE to do. It keeps my inner balance, stops me stressing out about life, somehow puts everything into perspective. A painting is also something complete .. so much of my life is ‘ongoing’ that its great to be able to complete something sometimes!
STAR: How do you go about the planning and beginning work on a painting? How important are balance and tension? Do you use any form of dynamic symmetry or similar? BHAGVATI NATH: I have 2 sorts of paintings. The first are those I choose myself, a pattern I’m intrigued with, that inspires me: patterns in a tree, a flower, a leaf; in a landscape, in the repetition of mountains, forests, water; in the line of a woman, lines in a face; patterns in the fur of an animal. That pattern already has balance & tension. But I do like things to be slightly asymmetric, slightly off balance. My main motif may well be central (but certainly not always) but never bang in the middle. The second is commissions. Someone likes my style and asks me to depict their vision. So it’s their image that is important. I do a few rough sketches of the possibilities, which are as much about positioning and size as subject matter. The commissioner is the one who calls the shots, although I obviously influence the choices, and have the ultimate decisions!
ST RTISTS STAR: What mediums do you work in and why? BHAGVATI NATH: For my personal paintings I prefer watercolors because they are matt, so seem more organic than oils or acrylics, and they are transparent. I like to layer colors and patterns, knowing each layer has its effect. I vary in the medium for commissions. I use acrylics for painting on clothes, and for speed if I have to produce something fast. But I find the plastic, too shiny. For murals, I use normal house-paint, usually ‘gloss’ or ‘enamal’, as it’s washable and lasts longer. STAR: What are your favorite works you have created? BHAGVATI NATH: A difficult one, as I do really like most of my paintings. One favorite is definitely a small watercolor on paper of my young daughter, turned into a nature spirit of some kind, in a tangle of tree branches and roots. I love my tigers, I feel I get their fur and eyes just right. Also, the Goddess Bhagvati rides a tiger. Other favorites are ‘Wise Owl Ways’ for the freedom it offers (and the so regularly patterned wings/feathers); Magic Island’ for the sense of peace and harmony; and ‘Frangipani Tree in Hampi’, which I nearly titled ‘Rebirth’, as the flowers are just about to bloom, life continues amongst the ruins of an earlier civilisation, and I believe frangipanis were a very early life form. STAR: Why did you prefer the color palette reflected in your work? BHAGVATI NATH: I use the colors of nature .. a lot of green but all colors, usually bright!!
STAR: What obstacles do you face in making and exhibiting your work? BHAGVATI NATH: Time and money. I need money to live, pay the rent & bills, buy food, materials, petrol, much more now than 10 or 15 years ago when I could live off my painting & print sales, now I can’t as my living expenses (especially rent) have skyrocketed. So I teach part-time, but much of my time goes into marking & preparing lessons and I’m left with a few hours a week and sometimes a few days for painting. Galleries and exhibitors in India expect artists to pay for a show, which is ridiculous. Already artist has spent money on materials, have lived (ie eaten, slept, sent their kids to school) while painting, have to get their paintings to and from the gallery/exhibition venue, and then on top are expected to fund it!! Meanwhile, those who hold the exhibition print up some cheap ‘catalogues’, send invitations online, and rely on the artists for the footfall. They do not seem to invite art critics or collectors, interior decorators or anyone who is likely to buy art and has the money to do so, as none turn up! They do not need to make sales, as the artists have paid all the expenses!! When I exhibited in Austria in Europe, the gallery offered me free space, and even somewhere to stay while the exhibition was organized & held. They invited wealthy art patrons and sold 3 paintings. They took half the money, but also doubled the price and got me sales!! They covered their costs and made a profit, as did I. And clients were happy with their works of art. A win-win situation for all. In India, the artist do not even have the satisfaction of truly getting their art out there, as the ‘general public’ and art lovers and collectors don’t even know we’re exhibiting.
STAR: Please tell us about your training in painting. BHAGVATI NATH: I had great art lessons at school, where we all covered the various mediums, from clay to paints and printing (we also did woodwork and making clothes). I specialized in drawing and painting from ages 14 to 18, and went to St. Alban’s College of Art, Herts., for one year. We learned all the techniques and ‘rules’ for landscapes, portraits, and figures, perspective, color etc. I learned ‘O’ and ‘A’ levels in art. But I didn’t paint from when I was in my early twenties until I reached 40. STAR: What are you working on now, and what are your plans for the future? BHAGVATI NATH: I’m working on a large piece – 120 x 100 cm – and it’s a commission, entitled ‘The Garden of Delights’. I’m finding it very difficult as he has given me many ‘things’ he wants to be included and it’s like doing a jigsaw puzzle, trying to fit everything in and keep (some) perspective. It’s taking a long time as I’m doing other things too.
STAR: What other forms of creativity do you like? BHAGVATI NATH: Dancing, gardening. You need a lot of creativity to be a good mother and teacher! Life in general. STAR: Any other advice for artists trying to get established? BHAGVATI NATH: Get your work out there, in whatever way. Stick them up on your own walls, on the walls of friends. 144
Magic islands STAR: What do you love about Goa? BHAGVATI NATH: The Goa family!! There are places more beautiful, cleaner, cheaper but nowhere is there such a large group of people who care for each other, who support each otherâ€™s ventures, who celebrate with us when things are good, who help when things are bad, who accept us for who we are. So we can be true to ourselves here. I have friends here Iâ€™ve known and loved for 10 or 20 years. The creativity. In music, photography, arts, crafts, fashion, jewellery, food, furniture & home design, home & party decoration, gardening etc . etc. The opportunity to meet people of all walks of life. The fresh ideas & energies coming in each year. I meet interesting, creative people all the time, in and out of season. I make new friends, get new inspiration, find new opportunities each year. I love the perpetual change here.
Artist Bhagvati Nath paints in various media which include signs, printed and hand-painted clothes,
book illustrations, CD covers and even paintings for a movie. But she prefers watercolor. She uses its translucency to layer colors, so each color shines through, adding minute details to reach realism. At times the realism almost crosses into the abstract. She also uses color, light and shade, and the â€˜shapes in betweenâ€™ to explore and reveal the cosmic patterns present in all things. On a closer look, realistic trees turn into dancing spirits. Spirits and strange creatures peer out from trees and rocks, half hidden, ready to escape as cities, roads and mines encroach on their homes. She adds a spice of humor in her paintings.. she always chose the beautiful path and her paintings reflect the beauty and nature she chose to live inside. She envisions her paintings on the walls of urban rooms, acting as windows to nature outside that no longer exists in the cities. She reminds the city dwellers of the beauty and animals that are disappearing so fast, and encourage them to save the forests and plains.
Timepasses trees 151
B A B L Y A K
Artist Maria Bablyak
was born in St. Petersburg, Russia. She was very fortunate to have been born in an artistic family. Her mother is an architect and a painter and her father was also an artist, teaching art composition and metals design to a university level students at a prestigious art college. She was taken to beautiful museums during her childhood where her parents patiently taught her about art. In her botanical illustration work, she creates paintings showing wild plants which are considered weeds by many but have been used for medicinal purpose for ages. Those plants are quite beautiful she is also interested in new brain/neurological studies, how that is connected with colour theory which she has been studying and how these new discoveries can be applied in art, to be helpful for larger number of people. She primarily works in oil and acrylic but often uses watercolours, gouache or casein paints. For textiles she uses special dyes for the natural fabrics. She believes that each subject, story that she wants to tell requires its own approach. Her works speak volumes of expertise and brilliance as this beautiful artist explores and captures our soul with the sheer beauty of nature and its colors.
STAR: When and where were you born? Tell us about your background. Where did your life as an artist begin? MARIA BABLYAK: I was born in St. Petersburg, Russia, about 40 years ago :) I was very fortunate to have been born in an artistic family, my mother is an architect and a painter and my father was also an artist, teaching art composition and metals design to a university level students at a prestigious art college. I was taken to beautiful museums since I can remember myself where my parents patiently taught me about art, making it interesting for me, like a game.
STAR: What artists inspire you? What is the source of inspiration? MARIA BABLYAK: I grew up surrounded by art, often visiting my parent’s work places and spending days at my dad’s studio. Although my parents never suggested to me that I have to be an artist, giving me a perfect freedom to choose my own path, I certainly had access to all kinds of art and could experience artistic life from an early age. That’s when I learned that art requires a lot of work and discipline. When I was 12 years old, my parents assured me that I have a talent and there my professional journey began. Naturally, my parents were and still are my first and great source of inspiration but also a beautiful city, where I was born, so rich in art and culture. I like and appreciate good artwork done in any style and medium, there is always something special to learn from every good artist. However, I do not follow any -ism, I choose medium and style expressing the best what I want to say at the moment. Of course, I learned art history, all movements in the art with their techniques but at this point I let life itself to be my inspiration.
Kathak Series 158
ST RTISTS STAR: Why are you so passionate about ART? MARIA BABLYAK: I suppose there are many reasons for my passion for art. First, definitely, my parents taught me to love, understand and respect. Art was like something sacred in our home.Then I made a decision to become an artist because realized that is what I really am and can’t live without creating. I live in art and art lives in me, for me its life and communication. There is so much involved in creating art: psychology, philosophy, physics, chemistry; thought and emotions, personal experience, vision. Each piece is a story.Art has so many functions, from recording history( who would remember much about wars and politics or love stories had they not be reflected in art?) to healing, showing beauty or fighting, restoring or destroying, art can be political, religious address eternal human qualities. I believe art can be helpful in individual life as well as to the whole world. STAR: What do you love about life, and what do you hate? MARIA BABLYAK: I love just living, being able to observe, feel, see, think and enjoy life. To have and absorb different experiences through travel, meeting people, reading, thinking, sometimes personal life and then reflect and share what I learned in my artwork.I hate...when people don’t get along. Not fond of politics and when religious belief is used for misleading people and creating division. Propaganda.Racism, sexism, and oppression of women’s rights.On a personal level, I hate disrespect.
STAR: What are your favorite works you have created? MARIA BABLYAK: OH! That’s a tough question :) I like them all, each painting is special for me. But I suppose those works which mark some personal events in my life and then those which are technically challenging or a creative breakthrough.
STAR: What mediums do you work in and why? MARIA BABLYAK: I primarily work in oil and acrylic but often use watercolors, gouache or casein paints. For textiles I use special dyes for natural fabrics. I believe that each subject, story I want to tell requires its own approach. Some can be expressed better in oil paint, other in watercolor, all depends on what I want to say, what effect to get in my work at that moment. I feel equally comfortable working in different mediums and even experiment with new ones.
STAR: What obstacles do you face in making and exhibiting your work? MARIA BABLYAK: I would say the major obstacle is having to think of a financial aspect. Then finding time to market and promote own work. Finding a good exhibition space is a challenge. Professional art world is a relatively small world and getting on top of that is nearly impossible without having connections.
STAR: Please tell us about your training in painting. MARIA BABLYAK: Besides all the help I could get at home from my parents I was sent to a Youth ArtSchool when I was 12 years old (quite late by Russian standards) where I started learning art history and professional skills in drawing, painting, and composition. Then for two years, I went to a prep school attached to the college I entered later for MFA, the Academy of Fine Art, and Design. Besides that, I attended private lessons at the studios of the best professors of painting prior to my entering the Academy.
Day longer than the year,collage,40x25cm
ST RTISTS STAR: What is your average day like? MARIA BABLYAK: My average day... thinking about art. That is part of creative work no one sees but it’s the most important part. STAR: What other forms of creativity do you like? MARIA BABLYAK: Hmmm ...I think life is a form of creativity itself. I guess I am finding creative approach to everything I do. I like teaching.
STAR: Why did you prefer the color palette reflected in your work? MARIA BABLYAK: I cannot tell why exactly but my general color palette changes with years. I had a “Blue period” for a couple of years, now I gravitate to warmer colors. But there is no color I dislike.
STAR: What is your favourite experience as an artist? MARIA BABLYAK: Starting a new painting! Although I have no doubt in my skills, every time it’s exciting and stepping into unknown, in a way. Also I love to paint outdoors, there is something about it I cannot describe, a feeling of being one with the view you are painting, part of it. my voice quiet but passionate and strong.
STAR: Whatâ€™s integral to the work of an artist? MARIA BABLYAK: The same as to the work of a writer and a psychologist. STAR: What role does the artist have in society? MARIA BABLYAK: I want to say avant-garde in thinking. A story telling, recording history. Teaching. Showing, communicating things often neglected or unseen. Healing, promoting creativity and liberating. STAR: Can you give suggestions to upcoming artist? MARIA BABLYAK: Learn skills very well first, then express yourself. Art skills is like a language. Learn art history but do not follow anyone but your own heart. Make sincere art, it will stand test of times.
STAR: How have you been so successful with marketing and selling your art? MARIA BABLYAK: It comes with experience and exposure of your artwork, more people see it, more they will like and think about it, tell others. I also take commissions which is a challenge to create good work with limitations set by a commissioner. That reminds me of my school years when students were given tasks and had to creatively solve them. I enjoy that and a happy client is most helpful.
STAR: How does the social and political climate in your country and around the world impact your artistic expression?
STAR: Who are your current art inspirations? Do you look to other contemporary artistâ€™s work during your artistic process?
MARIA BABLYAK: Lots of things in the world politics make me feel sad. Sometimes angry. Sometimes helpless. That certainly reflects in my art. I either want to fight what I find unacceptable or turn away and be in my own world for a while. I choose to fight by promoting beauty, goodness and freedom in my work rather than through showing the ugliness and horrors of the world. I think there is enough of loud, explosive art (often seeking only attention) and no need to create more. I keep my voice quiet but passionate and strong.
MARIA BABLYAK: I love to see good work by other artists and I always try to praise and encourage a good artist. But when I am in a process of creating, working on something of my own, no, I donâ€™t look at work by other artists. STAR: What style of art would you classify your work? MARIA BABLYAK: My own.
STAR: What are you working on now, and what are your plans for the future? MARIA BABLYAK: I like to be diverse and have lots of projects in mind, enough for the lifetime :) At the moment I am working on two series of paintings, more abstract and symbolic than my work of last few years. One is based on Native American names for full moon every month and another one is on different dances. I start with tango since I like dancing the tango but I am planning to create paintings inspired by many dances from different cultures. Another passion for me is textiles. I have been painting on fabric, creating wearable art as well as decorative hangings. In a near future, I shall open a company making and selling accessories, mainly scarves and hats. At the same time I shall continue studying textile art history and techniques of all cultures; hopefully, I shall be able to travel for my research. STAR: Thankyou so much for taking out your time and spending with us for this awesome interview session ! You creations are brilliantly vibrant and appeasing to the eye ! 168
S A T W A N T
A passionate artist from New Delhi, Artist Satwant Sayan weaves in delicately her stories in her beautiful intricate drawings, her subject ranging from Buddha and devotion to the spiritual journey of the soul. Using acrylics pen and ink on paper each work speaks the distinct story of the Artist herself. She has been selected as the artist of the month of the gallery The Third Eye, in 2013, with her name displayed in times of India news edition daily for a month. Her works were also displayed in the UBC mall bang lore in 2013. She has participated in many group art shows held all over India including Lalit Kala Academy. Satwant Sayan holding a degree in Arts and fashion designing has also contributed a lot as the coordinator and a fashion designer in JK Exports and Alankar exports, New Delhi. “For me, I always loved art ever since I was a little girl. I always loved drawing, and even back in elementary school, I had a big passion for drawing. That passion still continues today!” she says!
Looking at her works especially the story of the painting, one can decipher a great deal of the time and effort it was painted with. One can understand the value systems, the ethics, morality, values and personal lives of the times. “Well, I am inspired by life. The morning sun to chirping birds or the silence or nature. Everything seems inspiring for my creativity keep working and learning new things. Never give up and practice a lot with dedication and focus!”
STAR: What is Art for you? SATWANT SAYAN: I believe art is one of the ways to connect your thoughts with society, something very divine and magical. Art is not what you see but you make otherâ€™s see, moreover, it is the expressions of mind creativity. It reflects the inner state of an artist on canvas and also feel art is a verbal language connects to oneâ€™s soul and heart.
STAR: Why are you so passionate about art. What motivates you to choose this as your career? SATWANT SAYAN: I have written earlier also, my life till now has never been out of touch with art.From commercial art in school, fashion designing in college, to painting canvas, later on, I have always been creating creative thoughts in my mind which has now become a routine, thus a passion for me. I am fond of creating stuff, in love with colors and naturally have an artistic approach in whatever I do.The painting has always been my true passion. I have a naturally developed interest in art and it gives me immense pleasure.
STAR: What inspiration do you get from other artists? SATWANT SAYAN: India is a store house of immense talent with great painters, artists, and writers etc. Painters like M.F.Husain, JamininRoy, Jogen Choudhury, Anjolie Ela Menon, and Sanatan Dinda etc... Have been able to catch the eye of art lovers worldwide and were able to sell their works globally. I believe inspiration is everywhere, we just need to open our mind and notice it. I seek inspiration from other Artist’s, all of my learning is an accumulation of different artist who has influenced me throughout my life journey.
M.F.Husain-M.F Husain was India’s only eminent artist to get recognition worldwide and also he was one of the highest paid artists. He depicted Indian subject matters in the style of contemporary modern art. Particularly in cubist style using freehand drawing, strong composition with vibrant colors, he was widely famous for his wonderful techniques, unconventional work, strong themes mostly featuring women and horses. He earned the title of “Picasso of India”.
Birth of Sacrifice
Vandana Jamini Roy-Known as the father of modern Indian art, he was inspired by his own Bengali traditional culture. His works are simple, he captured the simplicity of local and rural life. He uplifted art of Bengal. He many times used colors like red, yellow, blue, white and ochre. He was declared one of the nine masters of the archaeological society of India. He was profoundly influenced by the Kalighar painting style with bold sweeping brush strokes. Jogen Chaudhary-A very powerful and eminent artist. He has made an immense contribution in inspiring your artists. His famous paintings were in pen ink, water color, and pastel. He is the â€œmaster himselfâ€? of lines.
Anjolie Ela Menon-An Indian contemporary artist, her works seemed fresh and based on subject matter and coloring modern abstraction rigorously figurative, sensual and romantic. Vincent Van Gogh-He poured his magnificent energy into canvas through the tip of the brush. One of the most well-known impressionist artist. Colors were the chief symbol of expression and moreover, he developed his own bold and conventional style. He used brush strokes in rhythmic, dramatic and imaginative style. Pablo Picasso-Regarded as most influential and exceptional prolific artist of the 20th century. His works often have characteristics of surrealism. He used colors has an expressive element. He added sand to vary its texture. He experimented with different style, theories, idea, techniques and cubist style. 177
STAR: What are your favorite works you have created? Explain your thought to them. SATWANT SAYAN: Some of my favorite works include the “Buddha Series” and “Dual Power” According to Buddha’s philosophy mind are everything and one of the most powerful tools which we possess. What we think we achieve. We are shaped by our thoughts we become what we think when the mind is pure, joy follows like a shadow that never leaves. Whatever mind can conceive and believe the mind can achieve. Be positive and remain on the path to success. Sculpting yourself, focusing your life, living a life of purpose. In Dual power, what I have depicted in this painting the two important symbols SHIVA and SHAKTI. Shiva symbolizes consciousness the masculine principle. Shakti symbolizes power, the energy of the female principles. Shiv and Shakti are manifestations of the all in one divine consciousness - different sides of the same coin. The whole Universe is created, penetrated and sustained by two fundamental forces. Both the supreme powers are incomplete without each other. we all are connected to each other biologically, to the earth chemically and to the rest of the Universe atomically. STAR: What are the other forms of creativity do you like? SATWANT SAYAN: There are lots of things but few to mention are; Interior Designing; I love to make dead surroundings come alive. Fashion Designing; It’s always interesting to make normal people more attractive and presentable. Cooking; while it is necessary to cook delicious,cooking is also an art like other artistic media, so presentation part is equally important as the taste, aroma, and texture of what is served. Music; It’s always amazing to hear what music artist creates from numerous instruments and tunes.
STAR: Any other source of inspiration? SATWANT SAYAN: Inspiration is everywhere, just need to open our mind towards the world to notice it. I spend a lot of time in gathering information, it’s the key to fuelling the art practice. Abstraction in art allows a man to see with his mind what he cannot see with his eyes. From the very beginning of human history, nature has played a vital role as a creative expression. Nothing much makes me happy as to observe nature and to paint what I see. STAR: What medium do you work in and why? SATWANT SAYAN: Preferably I work in most of the mediums, but I am more niche in acrylic, watercolor, and pen-ink in rhythmic lines. It’s always a pleasure working with pen-ink with acrylic. My Buddha series is an example because rhythmic lines inspire and create dynamic art, to show more skill, illusion, imagination.A lot of versatility in this field. It’s blissful and exciting working in this medium. It enhances my identity. STAR: Please tell us about your training in painting? SATWANT SAYAN: First of all I am a self-taught artist. Inspiration is everywhere, just need to have good vision to observe creativity around us. I get inspired by surroundings, environment, and the social, economic and political condition of our country.During my school days, I was very much attracted towards colors, love to riots with colors. With the help of colors used to create patterns and designs. During college days I did lots of painting and sketching. So each phase of my life played an important part in encouraging and enhancing me in the art field. I feel proud of myself as an artist.
STAR: What type of art would you classify your work in? SATWANT SAYAN: Usually I paint cubist style, figurative, surreal but I prefer contemporary abstract figurative paintings. I love working in abstracts.
STAR: what is your average day like? SATWANT SAYAN: My morning schedule starts with preparing breakfast for my family at7.30 am.After they are done with it, I gain some early morning energy by going for a walk. By10 am I start with my painting which goes up to a couple of hours. In the afternoon I prefer relaxing by watching t.v or listening music and then, itâ€™s time to prepare lunch. After feeding my family in the afternoon, I try speaking to my friends and relatives as it is important to stay in touch n connected with your loved ones too. Now I am again ready to carry on with my artwork by the evening and stretch it for next 3-4 hours. During this time I try to learn from different sources and apply the knowledge in my work. B 7.30pm I start with the dinner preparation and get free by 9.30pm.I go back to my work again for some preview, leftovers and finishing touches, and go to sleep by 12 am.
Artist Satwant Sayan beautifully explores the Indian culture,Buddhism and the history with her magical aura of intense thought and understanding and expresses through the earthy,colorful exemplary works of art, bringing us nearer to the mother nature and the divine. We know a lot about the philosophy,culture and traditions, so vibrantly explained! 183
STAR: Why do you prefer the color palette reflecting in your work? SATWANT SAYAN: Mostly my paintings are theme oriented, so color palette plays a vital role, moreover it is very important to choose the right color as each color carries its own meaning and significance which further helps in reflecting the expression and communication. As it is said art is communicating and it reflects the inner state and expression of an artist. For example. My painting “Communication with heaven”. In this painting blue color is dominating the whole canvas as well as communicating, the blue color is the color of environment like sky and water. The spiritually color of Lord Shiva, Vishnu, and Krishna etc. The blue color itself is a healing color and good color to attract business. In Buddha series “Birth of a sacrifice”In this painting, I have used shades of ochre, brown and yellow to give a warm and golden look. It symbolizes illumination, love, compassion, courage, passion, and magic. It is also associated with higher ideas, wisdom, understanding, and enlightenment. Another painting “Middle Class”In this painting, I have used a color palette of bright shades to symbolize rich class or higher society as the shade of red, pink, orange, green and blue on the other hand to show lower class or lower society I used black and white. So it’s quite lucid in classification through color palette and theme runs accordingly.This color palette plays a significant role in flaunting expression and vision. 184
STAR: Can you give suggestions to the upcoming artist?
STAR: When did you become an artist?
SATWANT SAYAN: Always keep in the back of mind, choose theme or subject in painting very carefully without disturbing the political and social issues of the country. Staying in criticism and controversies is an obstacle an unhealthy practice, it is good to avoid the growth as an artist. Respect the works of other artists and your own work too. It’s a gift from God which is very precious and important to preserve for future generation. It’s very important day to concentrate, practice and stay in mind to make it your own. Never let the light of passion be low. Keep inspiring another artist with good thoughts and right direction in the art field.Without the utmost dedication and hard work, its impossible to achieve goals.
SATWANT SAYAN: As a little girl I always loved to sing, dance and paint.My parents always encouraged me in my ventures. As I entered in my middle school I indulged myself in drawing later commercial art in High School and found I can pour my heart onto the page and can make creative stuff out of it. Thus my life journey towards art field started. After my graduation, I did 2 years Diploma in fashion designing and did freelancing for some time. Once I got out of my own, I had a lot more freedom and opportunity to explore and flaunt. After marriage also I did give up my creativity, kept on utilizing my creativity in different fields. In my later stage when my children were grown up, I got more time for myself. I started experimenting with new innovative ideas, techniques, style expression of my life experiences on canvas. For the first time, I realized I was an artist, part of the world I always wanted to be in.
STAR: What are you currently working on and what are your future plans? SATWANT SAYAN: Currently I am working on Buddha series. It’s extremely satisfying and serene. I love working on Buddha series with techniques such as rhythmic lines with pen-ink and acrylic on canvas. It’s very much fascinating and creative. Also working on a couple of series simultaneously. Each and every subject matter carries its own importance. When I get involved in something, it has to be in depth...My future plans are to open art schools in India as well as in abroad, to keep my passion alive, stay motivated and focused and expect the same to impart to a future generation.
AN ART FOR AWARENESS PUBLICATION
Published on Mar 8, 2018
Published on Mar 8, 2018
Happy International Women's Day To All! This Edition features some of the Best International Women Artists and their Interviews