Vedika Kanchan, an 18-year-old artist exhibited her paintings and sculptures at Piramal Gallery, NCPA in Mumbai, recently. It was aimed to raise funds for ILeap, a cancer foundation for under privilege children suffering from this deadly disease.
Kanchan has been an active participant in voicing her opinion on social issues and perspectives. Her exhibition titled “Sonder” showcased insights and experiences gathered from her travels — demonstrated in her artwork. Excerpts:
Q What is the inspiration behind “Sonder”?
My travel and the realisation that everybody has a story was my inspiration. My work covers a very brief part of my travels. In every place I visited, it is the people who contributed to the essence of the place and their stories is what made each of these visits extraordinary. All the pieces in this exhibition focus on the individual voice as each painting is inspired by someone else’s story’.
Q What is your preferred medium?
Acrylic on canvas and pen on paper.
Q Why did you choose to donate the proceeds to Ileap?
My grandmother is a cancer survivor. She suffered a relapsed in 2012, and fortunately she is in remission now. During her course of treatment, I met many other survivors and many other children who had come from all over the country for the treatment.
Many families had to uproot themselves completely from their homes and be here at the hospital for the treatment. These experiences are what has been the force behind my association and my reason to contribute in any manner possible for this cause. Though there are people doing phenomenal work, the gap is so wide that the more the contribution there is the better it is.
Ileap foundation works in the field of paediatric oncology where they support children with cancer from the moment of the diagnosis to the end of treatment. They also focus on mental health counselling initiatives and their work aligns with a cause that is close to my heart which is why I decided to contribute to this foundation.
Q What does art mean to you?
I have been painting since the age of four. From the walls of my house being my first canvas to paper spread around by my mother to drawing books and now various mediums. For me it’s not only a form that helps me put down my own ideas, thoughts, and perceptions but also a means of communication. A
s a student of art, I have found that the culture of the world is not stagnant- neither is it eternal. It is a force that succumbs to perpetual changes in the motions of society, a force that adapts in terms of the context it is in.
However, it is also a force that challenges contexts to devise its own. Art bears an inexplicable resonance reaching into the crevices of thought and is not simply an actualisation of expression, emotions, and desires but also an unobstructed channel to communicate the experiences one has and the principles one holds. As an unsung form of expression, it aims to communicate the concepts that cannot be authentically written in words alone.
Q What are the difficulties that you faced in your artistic endeavours?
To be honest, there have been none so far. I am lucky that my school and my teachers not only understand me but also encourage and motivate me. My parents have been strong pillars of support and they have been encouraging me throughout my journey.
Q What are your future plans?
I am passionate about interdisciplinary research, writing, and art. I would definitely continue to work on all these and will also be applying for an undergraduate course next year