Interview: Tashi Khan
Luca Curci talks with Tashi Khan during MIXING IDENTITIES, third appointment of CANVAS ART FAIR, at THE LINE Contemporary Art Space in London.
Tashi‘s work is a dialogue in contemporary times, a narrative that resonates a sense of precariousness that has come to signify our times. If anything, it challenges the sense of the immovable, the permanent. It embraces vulnerability and fragility. The focus shifts from changes that are observable and felt to those that are often unacknowledged and immutable, a sense that the beliefs and certainties that defined our world have changed irrevocably. Yet, it is not a lament. It is an invitation to look at the poignant or the momentous and seek ordinary pleasures. To honour transience that new forms always reveal and refresh what seems momentary or constant.
Luca Curci – What’s your background? What is the experience that has influenced your work the most?
Tashi Khan – I am very much influenced by my own background, such as poets and artists that came and stayed for long periods of time, doing family portraits and art. I remember watching them spellbound as they worked with brushes, knives and pallets. My parents recognised my interest and inclination for art and encouraged me to paint. I have never looked back. Picasso is my favorite artist and I get inspired by his creativity. I also love abstract art, it allows you to show your rich imagination. You create what you don’t see.
LC – What are you currently working on?
TK – I am working on two or more paintings about the pandemic and another one about the loss of my mom, which has sent me into very deep grief. I have a few more thoughts on creating, however, my thought process is experiencing a period of numbness.
LC – What is your creative process like?
TK – Usually, I am positive, I like to spread happiness, so my colours are vibrant. They are still vibrant. But my thought process has changed as time has passed, due to grief and others sufferings. Nevertheless, I try to do my art in relation to current events and incorporate elements of the recent world order with some kind of added twist.
LC – How is being an artist nowadays?
TK – I think in these times art has been suppressed by the world pandemic. There have definitely been hard times to endure. However, I always endeavour to create in some capacity. Although, in some aspects, it has become more difficult to find the willingness and happiness to express ourselves or to create. Recent times have been very trying for most.
LC – Do visitors’ suggestions enrich yourself and your art?
TK – Yes! They do most times. I welcome criticisms and advices. My art is usually happy and pleasing to the eyes, mostly abstract and contemporary. Sometimes I have to change this style according to people’s taste and personal perspective, it can be constricting. I would like to have the freedom to express my inner thoughts and passion, to be myself.
LC – What is the message linked to the artwork you have shown in this exhibition? How is it connected to the theme of the entire festival?
TK – The theme of the festival is ‘mixed identities’ and my art is a depiction of mixed races and heritages, of mixed identities. In my imagination, I have always thought that humans can be born stripy or half of one race and half of the other, visually speaking. My art also speaks of bringing together different races and cultures, which is extremely relevant. In relation to current times human identities are more open and all genders can express themselves freely in what they truly feel. I have tried to envision and bring to life my wild imagination on canvas. It has been well received and appreciated.
LC – Do you agree with our vision of art and what do you think about the theme of the festival?
TK – It’s a great theme and vision, very much in line with the modern and free thinking. It covers many aspects of life such as gender identity, race, etc. in a contemporary way.
LC – What do you think about the organization of our event?
TK – The event was good and the themes were great. I just wish the space was in a more central location, easily accessible to the public and footfall should be improved. Also, I believe that the opening hours should change so more people can attend. Most people work from Monday to Friday so 11am – 4pm is not suitable for all. It should stay open late after office hours and should be open on Saturdays or Sundays. Just my suggestion.
LC – Would you suggest a collaboration with us? What do you think about our services?
TK – At the moment, I can’t really judge because we were in the midst of the pandemic during my first exhibition with you, which was then cut short due to the lockdown. I definitely would have liked more exposure to the public. Circumstances are so different now due to the pandemic. However, I would recommend working with you as it has been a fun and collaborative experience so far.
LC – Do you think ITSLIQUID GROUP can represent an opportunity for artists?
TK – I think your company is great, keep doing what you’re doing. By giving artists more exposure at minimal costs, we artists can continue to have these inclusive and collective collaborations.