Radhika Hamlai, whose romance with colours began well over two decades ago, believes in keeping, not just her canvas, but every aspect of life virbant everyday. The artist and curator who has made her presence felt in many exhibitions in Oman, India, and other parts of the world over the years, remained undeterred during the recent lockdown and let her passion take over to bring new meaning to her existence. “The biggest lesson I learnt from the current situation is ‘gratitude’,” she says.
Restrictions in movement may not have put a dampner on her zeal and enthusiasm, as artists traverse across time and space even when confined to a corner, but the inability to meet people freely, especially her family members in India, did weigh her spirits down, and she is waiting to bounce back in this area as soon as things get better around the world.
“I have spent most of my time in my studio, painting and sketching. But as time went on, things became a bit quiet and I was keen on doing something different. Two years ago, I had bought this pottery wheel, and I was very keen on doing sculptures and learning all about clay,” Radhika said, adding, “I started out by making small plates and bowls, and later began making sculptures with clay, which was very interesting for me.”
Since her studio is located in her residence itself, Radhika spent most of her time at home, painting, sculpting, and cooking at intervals that suited her. Keeping a positive mind and maintaining safety around herself, by respecting the spaces around people and oneself, Radhika said it was very important to take care of each other during the lockdown.
“Inspiration is something that comes when you love what you do. If you love to write, you should write more; if you love to paint, you should paint more. And one should spend more time researching. Now, there are so many online museums that you can learn about, and it is the right time to sit at home and enrol yourself for an online class and study. That’s what I have been doing in relation to art, as I had a lot of extra time on hand,” Radhika disclosed.
Being an outgoing person who loves to meet people and socialise, Radhika, also said that she missed meeting her parents in India, besides her friends in Oman but was hopeful that things would soon improve and everyone would get an opportunity to once again meet their loved ones.
“The biggest lesson I learnt from this lockdown is ‘gratitude’, to appreciate everything that you have and everything you get in your day-to-day life. I don’t know about how this pandemic would change our lives hereon but I’m sure that we’d be more careful about our surroundings and about keeping a distance from everybody. About maintaining and respecting the spaces around everyone. That would be one important change in our behaviour outdoors,” Radhika said, adding, “I do miss going out and enjoying the good time we used to have as a family, besides meeting my friends and giving them a hug.”