Indian multi-hyphenated creator Jayesh Sachdev is a visual artist, designer, entrepreneur, and founder of the Fashion & Lifestyle label Quirk Box.
A graduate in Visual Communication at Lasalle College of the Arts, Singapore, he has won several awards over his one decade and a half long career, among them the British Council Young Arts Entrepreneurs India Awards and Tiger Translate India Arts Awards.
In our interview with Jayesh, we spoke about his beginnings in the arts, his most recent series “Utopian Dystopia” and why perseverance is the key in the creative business. Enjoy!
By Nina Seidel
Hi Jayesh, thanks for taking your time to answer my questions. To start with, I wanted to take you back to the beginnings- how did you get into art in the first place and how did you end up being a professional artist and creative?
I went to design school at Lasalle College of the Art in Singapore and Graduated with a Visual Communication Design Degree. Fine Art was an elective I took. While working in Advertising and later Founding my own Design Studio, Art kept calling out to me. I started painting with no real agenda, but before I knew it, I had a large body of works, and was encouraged by an art collector to show my works at a gallery. While it was a real challenge to get into the gallery space at first, the pursuit of it is where it began.
I wanted to talk with you about your series “Utopian Dystopia”. Can you please tell me more about it?
Utopian Dystopia is me Exploring the relationship between the universality of myth and multimedia experiences. With influences as diverse as ancient mythology and Warhol, new insights are manufactured from both traditional and modern layers. Through frantic and surrealist expression, and only through chaos, arises the inevitability of a new synthesis. The viewer is left with an epitaph for the inaccuracies of our culture.
I am fascinated by the cultural contexts and their hold on our interpretations. I work on retelling these mythological stories through pop surrealism, my works aims to create a sense of wonder and magic that is accessible to all, regardless of their religious or cultural background. The subjects depict characters that are powerful, complex, and relatable, with a focus on celebrating the diversity of human experience.
You describe your paintings as whimsical and thought-provoking, at the same time they are colourful, vibrant, and aesthetically pleasing. Why is it important to you to unite both, beauty and content, and is there one concept that you find more important than the other?
The unity of aesthetic and stimulating content in my paintings is crucial to me. By combining whimsical and thought-provoking elements with vibrant colours and aesthetic appeal, I aim to create a captivating experience for viewers. The aesthetic initially draws the viewer in, while the depth of the concept and content engages them on a deeper level, evoking emotions and contemplation. Both concepts are integral to my artistic vision, and I don’t prioritise one over the other. They work in harmony to create a meaningful and visually engaging encounter, allowing viewers to enjoy the aesthetic pleasure while being stimulated intellectually or emotionally.
Painting is such a physical, hands-on process. What do you treasure about it, and could you put into words how painting makes you feel?
This brings me to an anonymous quote “You have a lifetime to learn technique, but I can tell you what’s more important than technique, is how to see.” While it is a physical experience, what is most fascinating is the stories you can tell through it.
Can you please share some of your creative process with me, from a starting point to a finished piece or series?
I usually draw smaller scaled down versions of my work, often sketching on paper or even digitally on an iPad. This helps me create a composition of how I would visualise the entire work, rework colours and add or remove elements. While this is a starting point, the process is ever evolving and along the way, often enough things will change while working on the canvas.
You have been in the creative industry for many years. What would be your advice for emerging creatives, especially at the very beginning of their career?
This is a highly challenging industry and for very different reasons from each other many artists go unrewarded for their works. I would say perseverance is the key. There are no right or wrong answers, and there is no real failure, just new opportunities and new approaches to keep pursuing and trying to find your voice and space as an Artist. Personally, I don’t bind myself to a medium, but think of Art as an opportunity to put onto any and every medium. Art on Fabric translates into Wearable Art or Fashion, on Upholstery its Home Decor on a Canvas its a gallery piece. There are no limits.
Any current or upcoming project or event that you’d like to share with us?
I do have a Solo show at the prestigious Tao Art Gallery in Mumbai, India in September later this year. I am also in the process of conversations with gallerists for a show in New York, where I haven’t shown at since a few years and would love to come back to.
Any emerging artists you’d like to recommend?
I really enjoy @shyamagolden ‘s whimsical works.
And last question: What are your hopes for the future?
To find a voice as an Artist, to continue to find larger audiences and pursue the romanticised idea of an Artist that made it in New York 🙂
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All Photographs courtesy of Jayesh Sachdev
Written & edited by Jayesh Sachdev
and Nina Seidel
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