A tête-à-tête with renowned artist and Director of Ella Art Gallery, Ella Prakash
Born and brought up in the Kingdom of Bahrain, for Ella Prakash, this is her home. Having enjoyed drawing fictional characters and landscapes at very young age, it didn’t take long for her hobby to turn into her passion. And today her life revolves around these paintings.
It is inspiring to note that Ella is a born artist and honed her skills all by herself through reading books on art and mastering the techniques she learnt from them. Thanks to her supportive family, this mother of three teenagers successfully opened her art gallery in Adliya in 2004 and is the Ambassador to Bahrain for Arts For India.
How would you like to define your role as an artist in this society?
I have been part of group art exhibitions along with Bahraini artists since 1984 and I am also a member of the Bahrain Art Society. Art has always been well received and valued by collectors in Bahrain. I have the deepest gratitude for the audience who has always been my motivation and inspiration, supporting my art gallery and all the work I do here. I am pleased that now all Bahraini and international artists have a platform to showcase their masterpieces.
How does it feel to be the Ambassador to Bahrain for Arts For India? What major activities have you spearheaded being in this role?
I am honoured to be Ambassador for Arts For India and I am very passionate and keen to help upcoming talents. It is my privilege to be part of the society where we help to educate the needy and deserving students, enabling them to make their contribution to the world of art, fashion, film and design. Arts For India takes these initiatives further in supporting needy Indian students at the next level – a life-changing higher education at the college level. We already have 2 sponsors for the scholarships and I am working on some major activities and structuring networks. I am a firm believer of philanthropy. The Coca-Cola Bottling Company of Bahrain have an upcoming event at Amwaj Marina Lounge on 9th October titled “Create Beautiful Things”, where 4 of my artworks will be on sale and 2 are up for auction, with all the proceeds going to the Dreams Society.
Are there any real life situations that have inspired your work?
My inspiration comes from within me. My childhood memories, my travels, my family and in general, the life around me have inspired my works. All these years I have seen women from different walks of life. My paintings depict the story of every woman’s personal journey of finding her relief that makes her grow stronger. And of course it will be unique for each one of them but they remain an inspiration for the universality it contains. Abstract figurative art is what I choose as the theme, as it helps me to capture my strong feelings of positive feminism. I try to depict the strong side of women that can create positive energy which will not only be beneficial for women but society at large. I believe that through art, we can challenge, change and improve things and make our own long-lasting contribution in society and leave our little legacy when we are no longer here
What is your artistic outlook on life?
I try capturing emotions that are unfettered and entirely compatible with my life. Indeed most of my works are figurative; they are composed of various emotions
Tell us about the art auction you are part of in London this coming October…
This will be a live art auction held at the Hotel Hilton in London on 2nd October and it’s organised to raise funds for CwC (Collective for Women & Children). This non-profit organisation works towards the welfare of sex workers and their children. 4 of my paintings will be on auction to support this cause. I am thrilled and honoured to be chosen for such a noble cause.
What will you be showcasing for your second upcoming solo show in London?
Yes! This will be my second solo show at the Nehru Center London, in collaboration with Debut Contemporary. The theme – Alleviation II, unravels the core of feminine strength. To alleviate is to relieve of suffering. The painting, personally, is a visual representation of women from different walks of life, with stories of overcoming several obstacles. This is my way of empowering and encouraging women all over the world. 18 pieces of art will be on display at the exhibition that will run from 12th to 16th October 2015.
And finally, what’s your advice for upcoming artists in Bahrain?
I would like to share a few things about my journey. My passion and goal was to become a successful artist. I had to struggle a lot along the way but I never gave up. And today I would like to thank Debut Contemporary for their tremendous support for bringing the turning point in my life. Their vision is to empower and professionally equip artists with the business know-how and introduce them to the way in which the art industry and art system operate, so they can navigate it with more clarity, understanding and familiarity. I would like to tell you to always believe in yourself, especially the women. Never give up your passion in life and someone will be there to show you the way.
Ella will be shortly launching the live painting album ‘The Emotions through My Art’ so watch out for that and keep updated at www.ellagallery.com,
where art meets emotions