WELL-BEING THROUGH ART WITH INDIAN ARTIST VINITA KARIM
Art has the power to soothe, heal and inspire — all qualities that feel vitally important in these strange and challenging times. Today, contemporary Indian artist Vinita Karim reflects on the ability of art to help center oneself and express gratitude.
Vinita Karim has lived in over 15 cities across Europe, Asia and the Middle East throughout her life, creating a truly global perspective that shines through her work. In a warm palette of gold, red and blue, her original paintings combine the distinctive characteristics of real cities into one fantastical location. The waters and bustling ports of the Mediterranean, the sand dunes in the Sahara and ancient temples of Asia meld together, expressing the interconnectedness of the world. Vinita often incorporates gold and copper leaf, as well as embroidery onto the canvas, resulting in highly textured and dimensional images.
My children often say “Mummy, you have the best profession!”
And I agree with them, I do have the best profession. But it’s more than a profession — it’s more of a calling, or a grand passion that has never abated.
I have lived in several countries around the globe, uprooting myself and adapting to new places, cultures and people each time. Throughout these changes, art has been a constant for me — art is something which you can engage with wherever you are. And by sharing my art through exhibitions and workshops, I have been able to connect with people across cultures. Art truly has its own language. It decimates boundaries.
In today’s world, over the last two months, I realize even more the importance of art. When we are confined indoors, our own homes become safe havens where one can tap into one’s creativity, through many mediums like music, writing or painting. I feel blessed that I have this wonderful gift, which always keeps me excited to explore and to create and to dream. In fact, I believe each one of us has it. Some nurture it and some don’t.
Painting for me has always been a form of meditation. When I paint, I am one with my canvas and my colors. I am one with the whole universe. I am totally immersed in it and everything else just fades away. I get deep satisfaction from it, and I am so grateful that I can express my feelings through this medium.
Through my paintings, I can articulate the joy of life on this wonderful planet, which is just a dot in this vast endless universe. I strive to express this beauty and wonder which I am privileged to experience. Through my art, I pay homage to life itself.
With record low levels of pollution in our crowded cities, Mother Nature is sending us a strong message. A message that we should heed to if we want to save our planet. This virus has struck fear into our hearts, but it has also made us introspect about important issues like compassion and respect for fellow human-beings, about inequality between the have’s and have-not’s, about caring for our natural resources like our oceans and forests, about climate-change, about the future for coming generations.
This is a difficult time, but as they say, “this too shall pass.” Let’s hope for a better and brighter tomorrow. Stay positive and stay safe.
– Vinita Karim
— Sonia Nayyar Patwardhan