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Love Artist: Nidhi Mariam Jacob Cariappa

posted by Miss Lovissimo 28 November 2017
I-am-you-you-are-me
The Love Artist of this week come from India, a place I’m literally mad about.
Since 3300 BC Indians  developed  seamless their specific and unique culture. Meaning 5500 years of culture.
When I think that we, the Italians, are over proud about our 3000 years of history I feel a bit ridiculous…

ravi-shekhar-jaipur

Photo by Ravi Shekhar

Well, during this little while, our Indian friends got rich of an incredible broad and variated – according to regional traditions – aesthetic universe: basically, Beauty permeate every aspect of everyday life on the subcontinent.
I should restrain myself, because it is very hard for me not to indulge into celebrating the incredible India, but I’m justified, coz to introduce our Love Artist of the week, I’d like to give you a taste of this country.  😉
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Photo by Honey Fangs

So, as I said, in India, color and decoration manipulation is an everyday business, just two examples: the kolam,  a form of drawing using  flour or chalk powder to decorate the threshold and mehndi, the hand and foot decoration using henna powder.
The more interesting contemporary Indian artists are, in my opinion, the ones able to bring this huge heritage into the future, among them, our Love Artist, Nidhi Mariam Jacob Cariappa.
mehendi-and-kolam-in-indian-tradition

decor in Indian everyday traditions

Who’s that girl?

Always laugh when you can. It is cheap medicine

– Lord Byron

I met Nidhi, in Bangalore, thanks to another super creative woman, Sreeti, the soul of Memory of a Butterfly. 
During a girls night out Nidhi made us laugh crazily telling us about her trying to adopt a duck from a paranoiac British girl….from that moment I’ve been charmed by her personality.
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a portrait of Nidhi

Back to Europe I’ve started following her on Insta, getting more and more curious about her…the pictures she shared daily told me about family, kids, nature and a lot of Art, thus I decided to know more about her…I didn’t get disappointed!
I’ve discovered that Nidhi is a painter who work mainly in decoration of furnitures and interiors, in a sort of continuity with the Indian haveli tradition.
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one of Nidhi’s artworks for kid’s room

Love, live, create

I dream of painting and then I paint my dream

– Vincent Van Gogh

It is quite common to think about artists as very disquieted souls, indeed, Michelangelo was depressed, Henry de Toulouse Lautrec was tormented, Van Gogh committed suicide and this  are just  some famous examples.

Well, forget. Nidhi’s world is 100% full of colors and joy. Share, love, laugh: these are Nidhi’s keyword.

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Nidhi animate often kid’s artistic workshop

Actually, when I asked her to talk me about her work, she affirm that it is primarily the result of her need to paint; it is both a challenge and an outlet; a discipline and a passion.

In her 20s, she worked as a graphic designer in advertising and started her own design studio in 2005. After the years spent in Graphic design, she felt the need to start working more with my hands and less on a computer.

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an acrylic on canvas painting

She took on various projects in the field of wall art/murals for homes and corporate spaces, gardens and landscaping, designing hand made products.

painting-on-wall-underwater-creatures the-cat painting-on-wall-underwater-creatures-detail bretagne-inspired-artwork kids-room-painted leafs a-tree artwork floral-painting-detail Schermata 2017-11-20 alle 19.00.41 Schermata 2017-11-20 alle 19.00.24 Nidhi-tools mandala
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nature is one of her biggest inspiration

A community dimension is always with her: Nidhi curate also small shows of groups of artists (photographers, sculptors, fashion and product designers) in her studio space in Bangalore and animate artistic workshops for kids to help them to discover their talents and express their potential.

I am you, you are me

Recently Nidhi has started a new project called I am you, you are me,entering into a new  even though somehow well known field: she has started painting on human body.

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I am you, you are me

Body painting is a really old tradition in India: for every festival women play in flaunting the most beautiful decorations, made, traditionally, by men.

In a society where contact between men and women is a subject of great attention this is something that for me, as European, seem to be absolutely intimate and charged of sensual tension  and at the same time implies trust in the work of the other person.

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Nidhi at work

The way Nidhi aproach her new project somehow recall what impressed me while get mehendhi by unknown men, this feeling of reliability and intimacy.

She doesn’t paint bodies, she creates together with someone, she explains:

The subject is the inspiration, the canvas and the Master of an ArtPiece that is their for ever and together we play the roles of a medium, a facilitator and a guide helping each other learn about one of the biggest art of “letting go”.

Through this process, I have spent time with women from different walks of life, with the intent of exploring their strengths & understanding the weaknesses through perceived flaws, desires and beliefs both superficial and internal.

The women in this project have all been willing to claim their bodies as their own, with complete pride, dignity and composure. Not models or actors, but regular everyday women, mothers, working women, domestic help, women from various sections of society.” 

This project is still in progress, but Nidhi promised me that she will share with us the final results…

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Nidhi at work concentrated

Photos by Padmalatha Ravi

Love Artist or Love Artists?

The Indian Nobel price awarded Amartya Sen said that to empower women is the key to built a better future.

And why so?

The reason is the same reason why I’ve been attracted by Nidhi’s personality: the ability to work together, to be a community, to establish empathy with others human being, to share smiles, not to compete.

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Nidhi and her “Amma”, mom

Together with My Name is Love we keep talking about what is the meaning of our Lovissimo project, and we realized that we are reacting to our times, full of hate and egos, and we just want to contribute to a better World, thus we realized that we want to promote affection and kindness, because to be kind is a political act.

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be, kind, be revolutionary

I really hope that in the near future I’ll be able to see this female gentle revolution, seeing what Nedhi is doing, my hope grow stronger.

In a gentle way, you can shake the World

-Mahatma Gandi

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