Oman Magazine’s Rabia Qaiser meets with Hanin Al-Shaqsi, an 18-year-old artist from Oman who specializes in ‘Paint-Pop Surrealism Artworks’.
How did you start out as an artist?
I started drawing at a young age. I was drawing cartoons that I’d seen on TV. I had a real passion for art during those days; my family and school teachers always supported my art. I also had some classmates that were into art also, so we would draw together in recess and learn from each other, which later developed into drawing digital artworks, as well as drawing with pen, and painting with acrylic, watercolor and oil. I tried everything that I liked. From portraits to landscape and many more. Until I discovered painting Pop surrealism which is what I like the most!
What do your paintings reveal about your personality?
My painting has dreamy colors which reveal that I’m a dreamy person and I like to imagine a lot. Some of my paintings are inspired by my dreams because I Always lucid dream. I like weird stuff that is irrational and mysterious. I like reading about psychology and philosophy which are what my paintings are about.
Tell us about your creative process, from the beginning of a typical piece to its completion.
I have one artwork called “Reparation”. It’s about how the brain processes the pictures and turns them into written information. We, humans, do that all the time when we see visual info. The rabbits are like the self-conscious societies that follow blindly. I have a creature called “Dolo” which is like the hard drive that saves all the minds information for the society and later shares it with others. All these are humans process’ which is well known in psychology.
I always think of irrational images that hold a deep meaning behind it as I did to this piece. I paint about human feelings, thinking process, and societal problems. I use oil colors to create my artworks.
What is the fundamental principle in your creations?
The creative potential of the unconscious mind and philosophical life.
Which artist, living or deceased is the greatest inspiration to you?
There are many surrealists and artists who create imaginative works that inspired me to create my artworks, but the best artists are Annie Stegg, Robi Dwy Antono, Mark Ryden, Mab Graves, and Olga Esther.
How would you define beauty in 150 characters or less?
Beauty is what is inside your mind and heart. You give and take according to what is your mind and heart suggest. Your mind is more powerful than the invented machine and your heart is stronger than any challenges you face. Imagination, dreaming, inspiring is all beauty which is inside every human.
If you could hang or place your artwork in one nontraditional art setting, where would that be?
If I could place my art I would place it in European and American galleries and museums. Also some art fairs in Oman and outside.
What memorable responses have you had to your work?
Some people called it weird and unique and some people said that it’s scary.
How do you overcome creative blocks?
I take a break from drawing and painting and focus on other things because forcing yourself to create isn’t a good idea.
Do you believe that true expression can exist in the digital world?
Yes, it’s same as the fine art. You can express freely as if you paint on canvas. Art can be expressed in any way even by words like poetry. You can use any form of art to express your ideas.
What plans do you have for the future of your art?
I’m planning to exhibit my artworks in art galleries and expose my art more. I will continue painting and inspire many artists to create what they want to create.
Instagram and twitter: @haninshaqsi