In search of…

30″ x 20″, acrylics on board.

Try, try, re-try, fail, try again or won’t even bother? Abort it mid-way? (There could be a pot of gold at the end of the rainbow, who knows?) Not giving up- to continue the search…

To “enjoy” the journey, its highs and lows- in search of your treasure, sometimes a never ending search… not chasing empty pavements or are you?

ING Discerning Eye, 2011- to hell with it! More opportunities, more work to be done… eye on the goal.


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The road not taken…

The Journey, acrylics on canvas, 16″ x 16″.

Two roads diverged in a yellow wood,
And sorry I could not travel both
And be one traveller, long I stood
And looked down one as far as I could
To where it bent in the undergrowth;

Then took the other, as just as fair,
And having perhaps the better claim,
Because it was grassy and wanted wear;
Though as for that the passing there
Had worn them really about the same,

And both that morning equally lay
In leaves no step had trodden black.
Oh, I kept the first for another day!
Yet knowing how way leads on to way,
I doubted if I should ever come back.

I shall be telling this with a sigh
Somewhere ages and ages hence:
Two roads diverged in a wood, and I—
I took the one less travelled by,
And that has made all the difference.

(Robert Frost, 1915)

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The speaking box

Who are you? Where are you headed to? And what will you be today? Is it all farce or is there a glimmer of a tiny speck of substance and truth?


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Sarah Pearl : Same Difference

Some say Sarah, some say Pearl- one person, two names.

Two different names yet rooted together in harmony- incomplete without each other- no Sarah without Pearl- no Pearl without Sarah. Life truly is beautiful, makes things perfect for you without you even realizing it.

My art was incomplete without Sarah, Pearl existed but with a void. Along came Sarah like a breath of fresh air and Pearl found the missing piece of the puzzle.

Today Sarah Pearl sit back together and observe… S & P- like the day & night, the sun & moon; as if they were always meant to be ever since life evolved… they both found their true calling, have you?

Acrylics on hardboard, 11″ x 11″ each.

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Few years on…

Year 2007, wedding day- 4 years on… the red shoe laces being symbolic- tying us together; up and down, sideways, holding it tight.  The colours dripping over, taking their own individual course yet moving together in harmony. Acrylics on canvas, 36″ x 24″

My art has taken a different course too after 2007 especially when I look at my current works- I see more self reflection, a certain boldness in work and thinking, more experimenting in terms of techniques and concepts and feel its okay to paint what I feel and think regardless of whether it appeals to everyone or not… as long I’m happy with the result and it appeals to my sensibility only then I have been true to my art… nothing pseudo about it, art without pretentions.

The preview at Brick Lane gallery went off well. Happy with the whole set up and the number of people who had all turned up, spoke to some, good feedback on my paintings. 🙂 I wish to have more and more shows like this…

PS: Went for the 243rd Summer Exhibition at the Royal Academy of Arts 3 days back and it was a different experience all together… around 1200 works on display from Royal Academicians to other practising artists and architects- the works were curated well, a sort of a theme in every room- interesting to see so many visual thoughts on display- well worth the trip on a typical London pouring day!

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Brick Lane Gallery exhibition

Big day. Group exhibition starting at the Brick Lane Gallery today. 🙂 The preview is in the evening and I’m excited about meeting fellow artists, art lovers, buyers (hopefully)… fingers crossed!

On the work front, have an idea for a new painting and will start working on it… need to clear it in my head and will put it on canvas soon… would have been more active these past few days but this ‘Indian summer’ in London is killing me!!

Oh yes, going to the Royal Academy Summer Exhibition tomorrow, have booked the ticket already… looking forward to it. Next year, my work will be there.




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Hail multiculturalism!

Started working on this painting at the beginning of this week and finally finished it today… I had a basic idea in my head but the painting evolved with each brushstroke, each wash, each thought in the head… it’s difficult to explain it, more of a feeling but will try… the multiculturalism amongst us (take cities like London/Bombay for example) in terms of people- race, language, culture and yet sometimes we tend to ignore the beauty of it and stick to our fixed judgements and opinions. We all do it sometimes, let’s just admit it… people love to ‘stereotype’ no matter how culturally aware… and so sometimes I think- why, is it really necessary? When will this all end? Acrylics on canvas, 40″x30″.

Talking about multiculturalism… I met some very interesting people yesterday at the INIVA (Institute of International Visual Arts) in Shoreditch. The institute had organized a one day event on contemporary art where a group (people like me and others) toured around the arty places in east London, visiting various galleries from Seventeen to ‘upmarket’ Whitechapel gallery & White Cube to a gallery specializing in street art, Pure Evil.

Yasmina Reggad (Algerian origins, brought up in France), an independent photography curator ( took us all around… we chatted about different kinds of fine art, photography and curating practices… was lovely interacting and learning about her field and she was very encouraging about my work, what I was doing! 🙂 Her two Brazilian friends settled here in London who were in the field of theatre were so vibrant and at times they would talk in portuguese with each other! I remember telling Yasmina that I loved listening to European languages even though I didn’t understand apart for a few elementary words! YR could speak french, spanish and portuguese and mentioned how she adapts herself travelling to various places and sometimes all the languages get muddled up in her head!! 🙂 There were a couple of 16-17 yrs olds (again with multicultural roots!), future artists who wanted to know more about local contemporary art, wanting to join art schools. It was good listening to such a focused lot… sitting for lunch in the middle of Hoxton Square, talking to like minded people about things we were all passionate about… can’t think a better way of  spending the day! Strangers when we met, friends when we parted!

Highlights yesterday: Brian Duffy’s photographs exhibited at the Idea Generation gallery… Hassan Hajjaj’s shop (a photographer of Moroccan origins-, loved his work and his quirky little shop, will visit it again soon, with Junaid.

No colour, no fun without multiculturalism!

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Story behind ‘The Bohemian’.

A little bit of Bohemian in me… wanting  a little bit more! 🙂 Acrylics on canvas, 18″x14″, inspired by my visit to the National Gallery… the works of Van Gogh, Gauguin, Seurat, Renoir, Degas… seeing the masterpieces in real, the colours, the brushstrokes… the sunflowers, still life, ballet dancers, bathers… a print or an image does no justice to a painting, you have to see it in real to get the sense of magic, the aura!

There was a purpose behind my visit to the gallery yesterday, had gone to attend a ‘storytelling’ event, by storyteller Sally Pomme Clayton, to hear her tales inspired by the mysterious atmosphere of Degas’s painting, Helene Rouart in her Father’s Study.

A beautiful performance in front of the painting, lasting an hour, combining vibrant spoken words, music, myths of longing and travel… taking me to another world of art and creativity! (just saw, the event is mentioned on her blog,

With an open mind my conscious and sub conscious is more receptive to things around me and so when I came back home in the evening, my gaze fell upon this beautiful wall hanging (my parents had gifted it, from India) and I thought of painting it as a background for a new piece of work. I took a canvas from the arty corner of the house (!) and did a simple wash of blue and green and let it dry overnight with an idea bubbling in the head… a canvas with some colour is more inspiring than a blank one, when you get up the next morning! 🙂 And today, without pencil or charcoal, I drew the face with a coloured brush and then came the tones, the hair, the shadows, the background… it all just flowed easily. Initially I had thought of using another angle of the face but then this just seemed perfect for this painting… very happy with the result! A part of my personality in my current works… the bohemian, the wanderer in me!


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A cup of tea solves everything!

 (click to enlarge)

Reminiscing over a cup of tea… a part of me rooted everywhere I lived, merging with the background… green like the colour of the algae, leaves like the vine trailing any place it grows… I wanted a faded, old look to this work- acrylics, coloured pencils, indian ink; on canvas, 40″x30″.

Tea, such an integral part of both India and Britain… I’m not a heavy tea drinker, started drinking a little more when moved to London- the great English tea, so much better than ‘masaledar’ Indian tea! 😉 YES to tea in big mugs and a big NO to dainty little cups with saucers!! Even after supper, there’s always time for a hot cuppa! Tea always reminds me of the 1999 film, ‘East is East’; story about a British-Asian family. Om Puri playing the head of the family, a Pakistani straddling between two cultures with his English wife… after an argument they would always patch up over a cup of tea: she would ask, “will you have some tea?” and he would always say, “half a cup”. 🙂

The amount of time I spend ‘thinking’ with a mug in hands… and it was over tea, I thought of all the places I’ve lived in, thanks to my dad’s transferable job. I must have changed about 8-9 schools, made so many friends in various places. Did I ever feel uprooted? There were times my sister and I felt that by the time we made good friends, it was time for us to move on but then we looked forward to new schools and new friends… the “old” friends were always in touch through good ol’ pen and paper letters and postcards!! 🙂 (Something I miss terribly today, I do make an effort to paint hand made cards for friends and pen letters sometimes, makes it so personal.) I strongly believe of not living at one place forever. Some might say you don’t get a sense of community if you move too often and there is nothing to latch onto… to a certain extent maybe, but I feel when you move to a new place, you become part of a new community, meet new people, adjust to a new lifestyle… and yet one is rooted to the previous community through people, memories, smells… rather be a wanderer than a frog in a pond!!

The title of this work and post is borrowed from a ‘facebook’ group, created by Christina Georgotas.

“When you are upset… have a cup of tea.
When life seems too complicated… have a cup of tea.
When you wake up in the morning, and can’t be bothered to do anything… have a cup of tea.”

So, off I go to put the kettle on! 🙂

PS: Another painting on the same thought process: A stubborn knot, painted with acrylics and thread sewn over, on canvas, 18″x14″.

Loving the experiments! 🙂

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The laces and the striped shoes.

Red shoes, blue shoes,

Old shoes, new shoes,

Shoes that are comfy,

Shoes that are tight,

Shoes that are black,

Shoes that are white.

Shoes with buckles,

Shoes with bows,

Shoes that are narrow,

And pinch your toes.

Shoes that are yellow,

Shoes that are green,

Shoes that are dirty,

Shoes that are clean.

Shoes for cold weather,

Shoes for when it’s hot.

Shoes with laces

That get tangled in a knot!

– John Foster (

I had a pair of red and white stripes shoes when I was about 5 years old. That’s one clear memory (among the many vague ones) of my childhood! I remember wearing them fondly at school on my birthday, occasions when children were allowed to wear ‘civil dress’.

Oh, and as I write this, another memory comes to mind… I had a thick book of short stories with illustrations and my mum used to read aloud the stories when I was too lazy to read them (to improve my vocabulary!!), after lunch just before siesta… there was a story about a young girl who had lots of shoes and all these shoes had conversations with each other. There was this pair of pink shoes with buckles that was never worn and was obviously very sad when it heard other shoes talking about their adventures… and one fine day it was taken out of the shoe rack and then realized ‘she’ was going for a party and was meant only for special occasions, and was very happy indeed… just like my red and white shoes! 🙂

My striped shoes came with laces and I remember telling my dad to tie them for me (as mentioned before in a post). He later taught me to tie these laces and it fascinated me… one knot, two knots- voila, a butterfly! 😉


All 3 paintings in acrylics on canvas, 12″x10″.


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