Profile of the Month | Anita Varadaraju
She was spotted at Wade Wilson Art for the International Mother’s Day Soiree as the featured artist, and recently showcased her art work at the White Linen Night in the Heights. Anita Varadaraju, born in Chennai, India is a first generation American who comes from a family of artists and has been painting since childhood. Moving to Houston ignited her need to make her passion for painting into a full time profession. Lights Camera Action Editor Ruchi Mukherjee caught up with this talent at her studio on Hardy & Nance Street, which Anita she calls her second home.
After successful showings in galleries in Texas, her works are in private collections around the world. Anita is striving towards creating a legacy that is an ode to the different stages of her painting life. Her work represents her talent for reinvention with every new series. She has an eye for capturing different views of everyday objects, keeping her grounded and aware of the beauty around.
What inspired you to be an artist?
Growing up, my parents kindled the creative genes in my brother and me by introducing us to painting. And that flame or support from my parents and brother just never stopped. I have always believed that anything preceding a life changing event is meant to make the event a distinguished thing in one’s life. Painting has been with me all through my school and my work in corporate America. It took a shift in location, becoming a first time parent and complete faith from my husband for me to realize that I should lead my life on my terms and not compromise my true passion. That is when I decided that my one skill that has always been with me would become all encompassing.
Being an Indian American I am sure you have come across the stigmas related to being an artist. Share with us as to what keeps you motivated?
There has been tremendous support from family and friends, with my husband being the torchbearer for my cause! That being said, coming from a culture that believes in the academics of one’s work, it was not easy to make my mark as an artist. Funnily, I have always seen surprise from people when they realize I am an artist. But that just fed into my determination so much more! Now, every time I get projects, it fuels the zest and drive that I have for my work. In fact, one of my latest projects is doing my client’s baby room! My work is the first one the baby will own! I am so honored that I am not only part of the parents’ lives, but will be a part of the baby’s as well!
This is one of the harder questions for me. I would have to say that I am partial to works after the Romanticism Movement. It seems though that The Bauhaus is close to my heart. It just was a perfect mixture of architecture, design and art. Most artists had more than one successful facet to their works and I find that immensely attractive. Works and designs by Marcel Breuer to Piet Mondrian all the way to weaver artist extraordinaire Gunta Stozl inspire me every day.
How would you describe your work and your upcoming shows?
My work is predominantly abstract. I also have a soft corner for figurative work that creates an unique dimension to my work. I work on various surfaces – paper, wood, linen and just about anything I can get my hands on.
Being accepted in the Houston art community has given me immense pleasure and encouragement. Currently, I am working for various shows for this year and 2014. I was extremely proud to be this year’s featured Artist for Pre White Linen at Langford Market. My other upcoming shows are:
- September 21 – Featured Artist for the Mission At Serenity Ranch Gala, Conroe
- October 1-31 – Solo Showing at MoMong, 1201 Westheimer Rd, Houston
- October 19 – Collector’s Night – Details Forthcoming
- November 23-24 – Art Crawl Houston – 902 Hardy St, Houston
- January 1-31 – Solo Show at the Jung Gallery, 5200 Montrose Blvd, Houston
It was fun to have you as a featured artist at Wade Wilson Art. Share your experience and tell our readers if they want to host an event and have you as a featured artist.
It was a pleasure painting live in front of such a beautiful, captive audience at Wade Wilson Art. I enjoy working towards causes that I believe in, causes that touch my heart. I donate to charities annually with my time and art. All one needs to do is contact me through my website at www.ColorsByAnita.com and inform me at least 45 days prior to the event for my review.
Anita has had the privilege of living in two countries so far. Being of Indian origin in the US has contributed towards the strength in her identity. She studied business in school and has a healthy understanding of the corporate world. Going forward, her art is quickly becoming all encompassing. “I experiment, I learn, I am my art,” explains Anita Varadaraju.