This 15-year-old student of Ahmedabad International School is coming out with her first solo show ‘Evolving Enigma’ this June. Know about the young talent Muskaan Shah’s journey into the world of emotions through vivid colours and abstraction.
When one reads an exciting book, the mind automatically imagines visuals as the plot progresses. Our brains are programmed to become engrossed in the dramatic narration of the author. But 15-year-old Muskaan Shah’s imagination is not limited only to visualising a story’s elements. Her mind visualises emotions as colours. When she reads her favourite book Pride and Prejudice, she feels the emotions of the story as tones. She sees blue as joy, red as worry and white as tranquillity. This is what has inspired the 10th grader to create vibrant paintings that explore colours instead of specific forms.
Studying in Ahmedabad International School, Muskaan is like any other girl, shy and bubbly all at once. She loves to read, likes to travel and concentrates on her studies. But a more unique side of the teenager’s personality unravels when she starts working with colour and paint brush. Coming out with her solo show Evolving Enigma on June 26 at Amdavad Ni Gufa, Muskaan will be exhibiting more than 40 vivid abstracts that express her imagination and unbridled emotions. All of these artworks are created using acrylic colour on paper. The show shall remain open till July 1st, 2018 – all days between 4 pm to 8 pm.
Art teacher Arjan Patel of Sheth CN School, who has been Muskaan’s mentor since the past eight years, says, “Muskaan was (initially) shy in using colours. She thought that experiments in colours could ruin her paintings. But from the first day, I knew that the girl possesses boldness in her aesthetics. The way she holds the brush or knife, the spark in her eye and the forms she develops in her paintings are proof of her god-gifted talent. Any artwork can be judged on five aspects – colour, composition, form, light and shade. And Muskaan has an immense command on all of these.”
Today, Muskaan’s artworks have become quite mature. When she paints, her mentor Arjan Patel makes sure to maintain a safe distance, to save his shirt from the sprinkles of her paint! Muskaan’s paintings are a free flow of colours. Her acrylic patches are free from any kind of restriction. When we arrived at her residence to interview her, she took us to her balcony and verandah that brimmed over with botany. Just like her art, which is free from forms and shapes, her studio is also limitless, without walls. She describes her process,”When I am involved in something, I don’t like to let it go. When I am reading interesting literature, the thought of reaching its conclusion scares me. Likewise, when I am working as an artist on a painting, I keep layering it with multiple colours and become increasingly attached to it.” The shapes in her paintings are often obscured under various patterns, such that her friends and parents frequently ask her what the exact identities of these shapes are. About this, the teenage artist brilliantly explains, “I am still experimenting. In my art, it is the onlooker who has to define the specifics and not me.”
Muskaan’s mother Pradita Shah, a fashion designer, says, “As a parent, I feel proud that my child’s first solo show is coming out at the tender age of 15. But I could see her artistic instinct emerge since the time she was a 5th grader. All her classmates appreciated her pencil shading.”Muskaan recollects one particular incident that made her realise she may have a knack for art,” I only had a 10B pencil that day. All my friends encircled me when I was shading during the elementary exam. They suggested that I use a 2B or 3B pencil to make the shades lighter, but I continued my art exploration.” The end result left everyone quite surprised. Although the list of final paintings for the exhibition is yet to be confirmed, Muskaan told us that she is planning to display a few shading works as well.
The young and independent artist possesses a dexterity in using palette knives today, but she also wishes to get back to painting with brushes again, recalling how this skill won her the 2011 Lalit Kala regional level art competition. Her formless art is amplified with a lot of colour and water, and it is recently that she has started portraying them on canvas instead of paper.
The show will be inaugurated by educationist Gorsi Parekh, Founder of Ahmedabad International School and Nabibakhsh Mansoori, Eminent artist from Ahmedabad. Viewers can expect the exhibition to be a journey full of emotions, freedom, colours and innocence, and in return, young Muskaan hopes for a hearty welcome from art-lovers during her first solo exhibition.
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