The subjectivity of art is what makes every piece so unique and personal to every person that views it, and that is exactly what content creator and art history enthusiast, Shaina Nikam wanted to go for when she launched her first ever solo exhibition, at Method Bandra, Mumbai.
When asked about the inspiration behind the exhibition’s name, Shaina says that she did not have any specific running theme for the exhibition, because of how independent each of her pieces were. Refusing to be boxed in by one specific theme, style, or message, and also drawing inspiration from how she felt about life in general, she decided to label her art exhibition, “Why Does Everything Have to Make Sense”.
Finding introductions and labels irrelevant, Shaina Nikam has had an interest in creating art since she was a child, because she found it to be a fabulous way of expressing herself. She says that the part that makes her happiest about art is when she tunes herself into just one thing, which is quite rare for her because of her ADHD. A profession where almost everything she touches is a source of art and inspiration, where she can engage herself entirely with the things around her, physically and emotionally, she says that being an artist has helped her discover herself in different ways. Not having studied art professionally, Shaina has learned a lot through art history, and the world of things it leads and entails a person into.
For her exhibition, she has put out her art with the aim of putting the word ‘confusion’ in a new light. She wants to question the notion of being sure of oneself all the time, and wants to change the way people try to make sense of everything to understand things better. Using different mediums like sketch pens, acrylics, pigment liners, chalk paint, fly swatters, combs, and even thongs, Shaina expresses herself as an artist boldly and unapologetically.
When asked about what the biggest compliment an artist can receive is, she says that if she can flummox the viewer in a way that they get completely engrossed in her piece, she takes that as a compliment for her art. Because she looks up to artists like Amrita Shergil, Ram Kumar, Mekhala Bahl, and Remedios Varo, she has also learned to have faith in herself, and her art, and instead of comparing herself to artists she looks up to, she wishes to learn from them first.
In terms of future goals, Shaina Nikam reveals that in addition to her current project, #365DaysOfTrying, which is where she creates one artwork every single day, she is going to be a gallerist and a curator of events and experiences. Inspired by her passion for art history, she also wishes to get into the field of art restoration and preservation, as it involves standing in the same room as centuries-old art pieces in the basements of the best museums and galleries and studying them closely.
In terms of feedback for the exhibition, she says that the experience has been extremely positive, and all her artworks were sold out. She also greatly appreciated her family and friends who came and supported her.
On a parting note, Shaina encourages all artists out there to pursue their dreams and aspirations; and to all interpreters of art, to spend some time in the split second before things make sense, if they ever do.