Her artistic work includes painting, installation, sculpture and murals, and she enjoys working on several projects simultaneously, giving equal importance to works of different genres. Savita Jakhar Gandash is an artist with experience of working in India and France.
"This multi-faceted approach, no doubt, has its roots in the increasing complexity of human life and contemporary society. I constantly observe the world around and respond to the surroundings with sensitivity. I speak through my art," said Jakhar Gandash.
Jakhar Gandash has a Bachelor's degree in Fine Arts from Jamia Millia University, Delhi, and Master's degree in drawing and painting from Jiwaji University Gwalior (India). In Doha, she works as an art teacher in two French Schools, Lyc`e Bonaparte and Lyc`e Franco Qatarien Voltaire. She also conducts art workshops with several associations, and was recently a part of the Katara Mural Arts project as well.
For Jakhar Gandash, her love for painting began early in her childhood."Ever since I was a child, my parents would find me drawing, colouring, and painting on a level that was much advanced for a child. I was born in a small village in Haryana, which was inhabited on the remains of an old civilization. So, the visual arts were part of our ancestral rural culture; my inspiration is firmly rooted in Indian heritage," she said.
"My parents wanted me to be a doctor, and I started pursuing a B Sc degree, but I knew I didn't have any passion for it. On completing my B.Sc, I sat for the medicine entrance exam 12 times but didn't succeed. That is when I knew for sure that I had to pursue my passion which was art. My deep interest in visual arts prompted me to join Art School," Jakhar Gandash added.
She explained that in India there is a tradition of painting on the walls (on auspicious occasions or festivals) using natural colors. It is considered auspicious as it signifies showering of good luck, prosperity, beauty and spirituality on the house and the family living therein. Jakhar Gandash said her first painting was done on one such occasion.
"I was 5 years old when my first brother was born and as part of the tradition my grandmother was painting on the wall and I just copied what she was painting," she said.
Savita Jakhar Gandash's painting style is abstract and she uses mixed media like ceramics, fibreglass and metals, and encompasses virtually every genre to create her art pieces. Explaining how she goes about painting, she said,"I start without any idea about what I am going to paint. I feel an invisible hand guiding me in a specific direction and an image emerges. I want my art to be powerful, passionate, proactive, so I use bright, bold and vibrant colors."
She has exhibited her work across Europe and India, and recently in Qatar. In her work, she tries to use various colours, strokes and gestures to convey a particular mood, emotion or feeling.
Jakhar Gandash loves to spend time in her studio every day as she considers the studio to be her comfort zone, though she said it is important for an artist to get out of studios and interact with other artists."It is important to meet and to learn from other artists talk with them about the way they tackle the business side of being an artist, find out about workshops, meet with other artists and learn about their art and techniques. You share your knowledge and learn from others," she said.
Speaking about inspiration she said,"Due to my personal beliefs and respect for the Divine, my paintings are inspired by spirituality and nature. Art is my prayer, my meditation, and my healing practice."
An artist needs to be constantly nourished with ideas and for this she continually tries to see what nature has to offer."Very often, early in the morning, I go to the beach to soak in the filtered rays of light, living shapes, and unbelievable colour palette right at sunrise and sunsets. For me ideas are everywhere, all around us. You just need to spend some time with yourself to give them shape," she said.
Jakhar Gandash does a lot of commissioned work for art collectors, as well as for galleries and regular clients."Sometimes they suggest certain colours and size but it is my unique style that they want. Most of the time, they simply tell me, '... anything' but in your style.' I did some commissioned murals for schools, nurseries and for some private villas too," she said.
Currently, she is working on a project called 'The lost Girls'."It's a series of paintings and installation works which I want to exhibit in several countries. It's all about the women who are missing. According to United Nations estimates, up to 200 million women and girls are demographically 'missing'. The euphemism hides one of the most shocking crimes against humanity," she explained.
Advice to budding artists?"Never give up. Experiment, explore and travel as much as possible. It always seems impossible until it's done."