Sunday, July 10, 2011

Artist Talk: Vandana Jain

My name's Vandana Jain.

Where are you from?
I'm a city girl. I was born in Jamaica, Queens and now I live in Bushwick, Brooklyn.

What do you call yourself (writer, rapper, photographer, etc)?
I'm an artist : )

How do you create (your inspiration)?
I usually start with an idea and then I start sketching, sometimes by hand but mostly on the computer. I'm inspired by all sorts of things, like broken glass, and chain link fences and barbed wire. Also, I work with corporate logos a lot, in direct violation of trademark law. But it's all in fair use.

Why do you do it?
Art is a framework that allows you to look at the world in a different way. It is also a place where you don't need to work according to other's definitions, or to their expectations. When I make art, I don't need to have a meaning or a reason or an answer, I can just do something for it's own sake. Art helps me stay sane.

Are you currently working on anything?
I'm making gold paintings on cardboard for a project called "Protest." All the paintings are of haloes, mandalas, and other spiritually radiant imagery, and each one is mounted on a stick, like a protest sign. I like the idea of people getting together to protest the lack of awe-inspiring beauty in their life.

Advice you would give a young Artist?
Work hard, and don't be too hard on yourself. Stay out of debt. Art isn't gonna make you rich and if you don't have loans, you get to spend more time doing what you love. Be open to new experiences. It's like what they say, "It's all about the journey." Enjoy yourself, and stay curious.

I plan on traveling outside of NYC twice this year. Where would you recommend I travel to in the US?
I highly recommend visiting the Spiral Jetty, an earthwork by Robert Smithson. It's about an hour or so north of Salt Lake City.

To view Vandana's work click HERE.

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