Artist of the Week: Kajal Zaveri

There is so much to say about Kajal Zaveri it’s hard to begin. So we’ll start with where she lives. Kajal is a Bay Area artist living in Freemont with her husband and son. She started showing on UGallery in the summer and attended one of our Artist Happy Hours. I had the joy of meeting her spirited-self in person. She was full of joy and is gracious to boot. These qualities come through in her paintings. I like to think of her abstracts as little glimpses into the human soul. She set a UGallery record by selling four out of five paintings in the first 24 hours of being on the site. Her art is a hot item. She’s our Artist of the Week because she’s always pushing the envelope and willing to lend a helping hand to the team. We asked her a few questions! Check out her answers below.

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1. What is your earliest art memory?
I grew up in India and was always surrounded by wonderful folk and traditional art and vibrant colors. My earliest art memory is of helping my mother make a Rangoli design during one of our festivals, Diwali, using colored rice and colored dry flour. When I was about 9, my mom enrolled me in a local art class and under the guidance of an excellent and experienced teacher; this hobby started to became a full fledged passion.

2. How do you begin a painting?
I usually start any painting with just an idea, a memory of a place, or a feeling that I want to recreate. I never sketch, just let the paint and the strokes guide me to accomplish my vision and portray that on canvas. I let my observations and encounters act as a point of departure for abstracting, and rather than focus on traditional realism, I sidestep that for a more representational and modern composition which makes the whole process from inception to completion very exciting, spontaneous and fresh for me.

3. What is your favorite piece on your UGallery portfolio?
It would be hard to pick any one piece; they are all my favorites, but I love “Somewhere in the Pacific” as it is recreates the wonderful time that I had in New Zealand a couple of years ago, in the beautiful island of Russell. There was the magnificence and vastness of the Pacific Ocean, miles and miles of sand, the lull of the waves and me. And this could be anyone and everyone, escaping to their own happy place.

4. Who and what inspires you?
First and foremost, my inspiration is intrinsic and personal and is the amalgamation of my happy childhood in my native country of India, my various international travels, and my life now in beautiful California with my husband and son. The colors and styling of my pieces evoke my sense of gratitude, joy, amazement, and wonderment that I feel everyday and aspire to share with the viewer. The subject matter in my current body of work is largely inspired by nature; this could be the boundless horizons or the wide uninterrupted landscapes, the beauty of the changing seasons, coastal towns, rolling hills, wildflowers blooming proudly by the side of a busy road, and many such wonderful, special encounters that I have on a daily basis and get to translate onto canvas. I also love going through travel and photography magazines to get a flavor of the different cultures and colors of the world. I admire and get inspired by various artists like Wolf Kahn, Richard Diebenkom Mark English, to name a few and also appreciate the works of many Indian contemporary artists, notably M.F. Hussain, V.S.Gaitonde, S.H.Raza.

5. What do you want people to know about your art?
My art comes from a happy and positive place. My work in the realm of Abstract Realism, with a fresh, modern rendering, of something familiar, and known, yet abstract enough for modern sensibilities, is my way of interpreting, communicating and sharing my experiences, and my world with everyone else.

6. What’s one word to describe your art?
Vibrant

7. For fun, what’s your favorite family tradition?
Every year in spring, we love to celebrate Holi, which is also called ‘The Festival of Colors’, We celebrate the festival by smearing each other with paint, and throwing colored powder and dye, in either someone’s home or communal places with not just family and friends but even strangers gathered there, all in good humor. And which artist can resist or not love something that has to do with color ;)

Holi sounds like an artist’s heaven! Thanks for sharing, Kajal!