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Livable works
April 08, 2013 COMMENT comment
     
Livable works
By Priyanka Chakrabarti
 
Artist Anju Kumar lives in a world of breathtaking gala of abstract and modern art. She shares her perspective. Art, being a creative medium, is something one is born with, but sometimes destiny shows us our own path. It was after my first show that I decided to pursue art as a career and a profession.
 
In a creative career graph spanning 32 years, Anju Kumar's objective has been to create art that can bring life to any living space. She works from her home studio, Ayaan and Anmol, based out of South Delhi wherein her vibrant art transcends the boundaries of the canvas. "I have been surrounded with art right from my childhood since my father and sister are brilliant artists. I always felt passionate about art; but it was not just a mere hobby or profession for me; art was always a part of me and with every passing day only augments my zeal," says Kumar.
 
Besides art and decorating homes for the who's who of Delhi, Anju Kumar has worked for the Jaypee chain of hotels, The Radisson hotel, The Oberoi group of hotels, Hotel Ibis, The Fortune group of hotels, OVL, Petronet, ONGC, The Jindal University, The Saagar School, and many more. These have helped her carve a niche for her genre of studio pottery that refurbishes the mundane surface of an earthen pot with all kinds of textures and finishes.
 
For her, art is a growing and ever evolving process. "My work is primarily inspired by nature and its wonders and eternal mysteries," she tells us.
 
Speaking of inspirations, do personal relationships influence her work? "Art, being a creative medium, is something one is born with, but sometimes destiny shows us our own path. For me, too, it was after my first show that I decided to pursue art as a career and a profession. However, I must admit that deep down inside my heart, my father always inspired me to become an artist," she says.
 
Her work is mostly incorporated in mixed media wherein she uses ceramic, terracotta, acrylics, oils and jute. "I use scalpel and knife strokes, as well as acrylics and oils; but for my pottery we throw on the wheel and all the pieces are handcrafted in terracotta," she says elaborating on the fact that her work has no limited demographic appeal; rather, it is universal in its approach.
 
A student of political science, Kumar completed her graduation from Delhi University. So when did the art bug bite her? – "I got married during my graduation days but I kept my zeal for art alive. However, it was a stroke of luck that a few friends from ITDC saw my work and recommended them to their inhouse designers. They too liked my work and in 1989 I got my first contract for Hotel Kanishka (now hotel Shangri-La) for huge pottery pieces. This prestigious contract set the course of my career and eventually with all the encouragement and appreciation I decided to organise my first pottery show in February 1990," she recalls.
 
Kumar credits her parents and husband for constant encouragement. "My parents and my husband have always been my pillars of strength during endless sessions of trials and tribulations. A happy atmosphere with love and understanding was conducive for creativity to blossom," she concludes.

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