For someone who was born in the second half of the 1950s to have made a successful career as an artist is quite an achievement. In fact, Shabnam Anand considers herself lucky as her parents supported her choice to pursue art as a profession. For, back then, not many parents allowed daughters to step out of the four walls of their homes, leave alone letting them choose a vocation. “They were, in fact, proud of my creativity as I was good at art in school,” says Shabnam.
Born in Dehradun to Seema and Anand Singh, Shabnam grew up on a farm surrounded by orchards and fields of fresh green. “I was schooled in Cambrian Hall, Dehradun and later studied textile design at New Delhi Polytechnic,” she informs. Though Shabnam’s father came from a humble farming background, he was actively associated with the Hindi film industry. “His friend circle included KN Singh, Bharat Bhushan, KL Saigal and Shyam along with his best friend, Tiwari. Most of my earlier years were spent listening to his stories of yesteryears,” shares the artist who considers her father the most inspirational person in her life. “He had a progressive and philosophical outlook on life. He was my perfect hero,” says the artist who, as an individual, feels drawn to all things natural. That is the reason why Shabnam tries and paints in sync with nature. “In all its simplicity yet complex creation of shapes, colours, life and rhythm, nature has it all. I let it flow through the multitude of emotions that we feel as humans,” explains Shabnam, adding flowers have been her greatest inspiration as “they always have so much to offer in their silence, beauty and grace.”
The sexagenarian artist’s most favoured genre is nature, modern and abstract to some extent.“Nature because of the freshness and naturalness of it. Modern and abstract because there’s always a different dimension in it. Impressionist because it has that mysterious feel, and minimalist because of its uncrowned style and space,” explains Shabnam who loves playing badminton, swimming, hiking and listening to music.