Artist Surbhi Soni: Every Flower Is A Soul For Me
- IWB Post
- September 9, 2015
Boy, what a talent Surbhi Soni is! She is a part of our campaign ‘Classroom on Wheel’ wherein she will create a masterpiece using an old school bag. The money raised after the sale of her artwork will serve as a tuition expense for underprivileged school-going kids. JWB plans to hire a full-time teacher who will go to various city slums every day, along with a portable classroom to help these kids study after school-hours.
To introduce Surbhi to you, we bring her beautiful story:
JWB: Surbhi, your work station is like a garden. So many flowers!
JWB: What do you do apart from painting?
Surbhi: I teach art to students preparing for NID, NIFT, NATA, etc. Also to those who are looking for stress-free moments. This includes people from all walks of life, example – doctors, professionals, housewives, etc.
JWB: So basically your life is wrapped around art. How fortunate!
Surbhi: I was very small when I started painting. I have done exhibitions in and outside India. The experience is enriching and incessant.
JWB: Aah, we know some houses in Jaipur that are full of paintings created by you!
Surbhi (laughs): I hold high gratitude for people who admire my work. My work is not limited to canvas. I paint on everything around me, be it a saree, curtains, or a flower vase!
JWB: Are these the chiffon sarees Rajasthani women love to wear?
JWB: Can we discuss the financial benefits of being into this profession?
Surbhi: When I started, I didn’t really bother about the amount that I earned. I was more in awe seeing people spending their fortune on my work. I think this is the story of every artist. The admiration is always bigger than money. However, the more your art catches attention, the more are the chances of earning handsome money.
JWB: How proud your family is?
Sana, Surbhi’s daughter, quipped, “Very Much!”
Surbhi: My daughter, Sana, is my critic, while my husband is all praises for me. Sana accompanies me most of the time whenever I paint. She challenges me to do better every time. Moreover, she is the one who designs my catalogues and tracks down the exhibitions in which I can participate.
Sana (giggles): Oh come on, I am not the hero here! You know what; papa always accompanies maa whenever she works during odd hours. They chat, chuckle, and discuss house-hold things…and all of it feels perfect to me and my brother!
JWB: What have you learnt from your mother?
Sana: Independence. I remember stalking her everywhere in the house during my childhood. I wanted to observe every color she is touching and putting on the canvas. For me, her independent thoughts were reflected in the strokes of her paint brush. I do this even today.
Surbhi: I love you.
JWB: These words are beautiful, Sana. Surbhi, you started long back when there weren’t many female artists in Jaipur. What was the scenario like?
Surbhi: People asked me if my husband’s financial condition was shaking. But I wanted to enjoy the moment and give my passion a direction. Moreover, it feels wonderful to add to the house-pocket!
JWB: That’s true! Have you ever been criticized?
Surbhi: Like every mother, my mother too shrugged off my 1st work and doubted me (laughs).
JWB: Ah, mothers!
Surbhi: Funnily, she made me switch my subjects in high school. I opted for arts, while my doctor parents wanted me to pursue science.
JWB: We don’t want to get over with this interview, alas! In the end, tell us what has been your best compliment ever?
Surbhi: I want to tell you about two incidents. First, when I painted on few Ostrich eggs for a family in South Africa. They sent me a mail saying – “Surbhi, you have filled our life with colors in the form of these art pieces. We will preserve them forever.”
And the second was when Minister Bina Kak praised my floral paintings saying, “इन फूलों में केवल खुशबू की कमी हैl” (These flowers only lack fragrance now)
Photo courtesy: Shashank K Tyagi