Sahaya Sharma Kapur

Empire of Light (2020), Oil, enamel and acrylic on canvas, 4×4 ft

1. Name: Sahaya Sharma Kapur IG: @sahayasharma Location: New Delhi, India Website:

2. What inspired you to begin creating art?

Childhood escapism. Creating art has always been a transcendental activity for me. It was something I made in the confines of my bedroom that I shared with my sister. It was a safe space I went to. I started off with making birthday and festival cards for every family member. I’ve basically been drawing and painting for as long as I can remember!

3. To what degree does your cultural background/heritage influence your work?

Immensely! India is the land of Spirituality, colour and Chaos. I like to believe that Colour and an organised Chaos are some of the visual elements that inform my work. A very apparent and predominant theme that seems to inspire the process, painting titles and my life at large is Spirituality.

Agate (2020), Acrylic and acrylic pour on paper, 31”x41”

4. What draws you to create with this medium in particular and how does it depict your ideas?

I’m very drawn to the fluidity of paint and its versatile nature. Painting is linked with the movement of the wrist and the wrist is informed by the mind. I regard painting as a highly spiritual act and it does justice to some of the esoteric ideas that I paint around like the Hierarchy of the Soul and Ascension (Eye in the Sky).

Ascension Series / Eye in the Sky (2021), Oil, enamel, acrylic and colour pencil on paper,

8. Who/ what do you draw inspiration from creatively?

Occultism, Meditation and Music. The term Occultism was introduced into the English language by the esotericist Helena Blavatsky. In 1875, Blavatsky started a society called The Theosophical Society which teaches that the purpose of human life is spiritual emancipation and claims that the human soul undergoes reincarnation upon bodily death according to a process of karma. Books by members of this society really inspire me eg. Masters and the Path, The Voice of Silence and The Path of Occultism by C. W. Leadbeater and Annie Besant amoung many others.

I practice daily meditations of a spiritual school called Pranic Healing that was founded by Grand Master Choa Kok Sui.

Music is another stimulus that really inspires my being and fuels my creativity. I listen to a wide range of genres from alternative indie rock, classic rock and roll, sufi, old school Bollywood retro music, Folk fusion and Spiritual Chants. Some of the artists that I love across these genres are – Foals, Red Hot Chilli Peppers, Nusrat Fateh Ali Khan, A. R. Rahman, Kishore Kumar, Asha Bhosle, Achint, Lifafa, Techpanda & Kenzani. Chants by my spiritual guru GMCKS and other transcendental chants are always playing on repeat in the studio.

Empire of Light (2020), Oil, enamel and acrylic on canvas, 4×4 ft

6. Why do you use the colours/ forms/ shapes/textures/ patterns that you do?

Colours- My colour palette is a unique balance between earthly, pastel and fluorescent. I enjoy working with all three because they all seem to represent my artistic sensibilities.

Forms and Shapes – The forms are fluidic and organic in nature that are achieved with a lot of layering. Like a coral reef on acid or an ant inside a kaleidoscope. I’m really inspired by the triangle as a shape these days, itsignifies an upward movement towards cosmic consciousness.

Textures & Patterns- I’ve finally formulated a unique signature brushwork that I thoroughly enjoy. The colours inform the textures that I create with my fingerprints, my side palms, tissue paper, end of the paint brush and other tools

7. How would you describe the current trajectory of your work?

My 2021 body of work is very one pointed in aesthetic and more defined as compared to my previous works. I’m trying to work towards a spiritual dynamism in terms of colour, shape and flow by using shapes like triangles, circles, diamonds and stars.

I’ve taken a lot of refuge in my own meditative practices and inspiration from the Neo Tantric art movement that originated in the 1960’s in India. In Sanskrit Tantra means “loom” or “weave,” but also “treatise.” What I am trying to do is to express my own learnings and epiphanies in the work. It’s a marriage between knowledge and experience.

9. What do you do to pull yourself out of a creative block?

When I reach a creative block, I astral travel, physically travel or simply distance myself from the studio for a bit. I reach a block when I get very overwhelmed with the inspiration at hand and reach a sort analysis paralysis. The time away from the studio really helps in distilling the creative inspiration. The residue of the inspiration is the artwork.

10. What is the desired effect that you hope for your art to have on its viewers?

I aspire to create art that moves individuals and transports them to some place and back just for a little bit. I believe that the very purpose of art is to transcend. I have a thing I say- “Good art makes you want to go to the bathroom…It hits you in the gut and suspends your soul for two seconds”

Painting Caving In (2019). Shot by Ahvanya Sharma

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