Today, we are proud to be featuring a performance artist Singapore – Shamsa Smiha Kapoor, or Shamsa for short. She will be sharing more about her art style as well as her journey as an artist. The following excerpt are all in her own words.
Much of my personal artistic practice was nurtured under my mentor, Kanchan Chander during my final years of high school. She was highly established in the Indian art scene. It was under her that I learnt and fell in love with conceptual iterations that underlies any mature creative processes.
I finally had the tools to develop personal, philosophical, cultural and historic narratives that were personal to me and elaborate them in my creative process. To pursue this further I enrolled myself in LASALLE.
Singapore has been a very important mile-stone in shaping my creative practice. It opened up the world of contemporary art to me where I automatically started leaning further towards conceptual thinking and challenged the jaded notions of what could be. (to be a performance artist in Singapore)
Understanding the history and all the new developments in art and art thinking opened up my interest to performance art.
Perhaps, it was the years spent as a child decorating and performing on school stages, coupled with my immense love for deep conceptual thinking that could find a beautiful entanglement in contemporary performance art in the fine art context.
I, the artist, in flesh and blood, am the artwork. The actions I perform in real time, the traces it leaves, and the reactions it derives from the audience, together form the artwork. This was at the peak of my creativity.
Performance art actively shifts our perception of art to focus more on the creative process behind art-making. To an extent, this involves a rejection of the skill based approaches to art which focus a huge amount of attention on the final outcome and undervalue the process behind art-making.
Performance art demands ‘presence’ on the part of the artist and the audience both. In many cases, performance workshops are constructed in a way that every participant who joins becomes an artist in their own right to contribute to the collective experience of the artwork.
With such a focus on presence, performance art can be understood to be a more organic process driven creative strategy which demands a full body experience.
In my practice, I wish to nurture these qualities of performance art that urge us to slow down and increase our awareness, to connect and become one with each other and the environment in which it is performed.
These qualities bring about a therapeutic-healing effect on the people who engage with this process. This can provide a creative key to mindfulness using art making so we can all learn to be more centred in ourselves and develop empathetic connections with the people and our surroundings.
I wish to work with groups of people to join me in forming such experiences together.
By performing with each other, we can collectively connect with the space around us, with nature, with the processes of drawing and painting, or anything else that we decide to work with on within the structure of such art workshops.
I wish to challenge ourselves to be more open to these new creative processes.
My time in Singapore has also surprised me with all the new technological innovations of our time. The new media in development that has taken over our lives is another area I wish to actively engage with.
It’s here, I can explore my existing interest in the idea of creative collaborations to take on new meanings. These technologies have immense potential to connect and communicate. It’s quick and expansive.
I wish to understand the reach of such technologies and challenge its existing boundaries by infusing them with creative conceptual ideas.
I want to challenge myself to use these technologies to present new ways of experiencing art. My time in LASALLE has been specifically useful here as it has challenged me to develop my conceptual thinking in a way that it can respond to all such evolving innovations of our time.
I feel that it’s a very exciting time to be alive, especially in Singapore which is championing creative innovations in the corporate sector. It is now the responsibility of the artists to harness them for creative purposes.
I wholeheartedly believe that creative collaborations where we can bring our skills and strengths together to make use of the innovations of our time is essential to march our way into the future.
If artists can find creative strategies to collaborate with the rich corporate sector that builds Singapore, we can image a future together with dynamic creative innovations.
There’s no other field I’d rather be in than the arts, for I see the potential of creative evolution to shape and nurture the future worlds clearly laid out in front of my eyes.