An Exhibition of Love
It started off as a conversation with a friend who was helping me with my work in July ‘21.
I had written down some of my goals – one of which was to have my own debut art exhibit! After all, an exhibit marks an entry into the real world. It says Hello!, States your talents, and lets everyone know you’re up and running for business! I was ready for an explosion.
I was already feeling a little guilty because I had planned to exhibit my work in early 2020 and then lockdown erupted and I helplessly postponed. I kicked myself for a bit until I tossed myself into what I would call a transformative wave of my own. From partaking in mundane things like tending to my nephew & niece, to lots of solo-time, journaling and going for long walks… Lockdown truly created a new Wersion of Whenky – one where I was more connected to my higher consciousness. Poems and murals flowed through my veins…
My friend interrupted and asked, “So what’s stopping you from doing it now?”
I had a few concerns – for example I hadn’t varnished any of my artworks before and I had many, huge ones. Some artworks were not ready to exhibit – they needed minor fixes. All of them needed to be well stretched and framed.
I wanted my launch exhibit to have an art&fashion Sample Sale – it was an integral part of Whenky in Whencut Goddamn, I simply didn’t want to do it without it. I hadn’t even found a proper digital printer by now!
I wanted to launch my logo and that wasn’t ready yet and I didn’t want to compromise on quickening the process of my perfect Logo. I wanted to have a beautiful Brass Logo Launch, which would be kept in my studio later.
The concerns were legit.
My friend said it was doable. She encouraged me to work on it with a plan and told me I would figure it out. It was nice to hear that I could figure things out… liberating – to be honest. I was overcomplicating things when I spoke to myself. I was being too harsh and critical.
I did a bit of research, I asked the Universe to send me signs and – it rightfully did! It connected me to like-minded souls who guided me to resources and collaborations… all you gotto do is ASK – keep an eye out, and take a chance!
I began to find my world transform into a space of things working out for me, in my favor. Another friend told me, whatever you focus on – expands and it grows and manifests into your life. This in our usual lives is worry, pain, anxiousness and fear. I exchanged the words with things are working out for you Whenky!!! It is years of working towards this mindset of not letting the downs bog you down, but I was successful with it this time.
Through the entire month of planning my exhibit, I didn’t cry about my exhibit, I didn’t ask, “O Dear God, why me?, Why is this not working out for me”. I just picked up my logs and went to work everyday. Accompanied with my hot pink NicoJournal Holiday tote, I felt empowered to keep going, to keep striving for a vision. It was my vision, without making any compromises.
The things I had to work on –
Booking the event venue and date (big one considering this sets pace of everything that follows),
Creating creative Art Show Invites
Business cards, creating a catalogue, pricing my artwork
Descriptor cards for each artwork – exhibition style with each poem
Create my own Whenky Website & going profesh!
Painting for me is a highly spiritual process where I submit to a higher power. No planning, sketching, designing the architecture of the wall or canvas… no distractions, all one stroke. These painting were like lightening. There were a lot of thoughts brewing in my mind about women, the DNA of our cultures, stories we are fed, and feed children, the construct of hierarchies and power and women operating as warriors. Each artwork has been created and curated with a lot of love, hours of inspiration & ideation, implementation & presentation. So to put a price tag on something made with love is uncanny in the beginning… but soon I learned, each object has a value and so does Art and the work that goes behind creating a masterpiece. Its not just art, it’s an emotion, it’s a feeling, it has a story and a meaning, it’s energy that’s being transferred…
My manifestation for my work was to be sold, celebrated and honored in each home & space it is welcomed into. <3
The old Whenky believed in disempowering thoughts such as I cant do it by myself, things don’t work out for me, no one will show up for my show, no one will buy my work. It has been so liberating to have thought of all things going my way instead of the other way… but I also believe this is divine timing – it is a blessed time. Dear Reader, I truly wish you embark on this mindset too and witness its magic…
As a socially anxious person (ex-Whenky), the one thing I truly wished for was – a room of people who I loved and who I would be comfortable to be myself and wouldn’t fumble my special speeches… I wanted everything to be as effortless as melting butter on toast. It had to have meaning and be special. It had to move people.
I’d like to believe it did.
As the days moved by, my Savior Sisters pitched in, they helped me arrange all my pieces beautifully giving each piece its own charm and space to highlight. My driver, my Man Friday was with me all through and I am truly grateful for him he helped me do it all effortlessly from picking to wrapping to dropping off the paintings.
It was show time.
My Gold Outfit was perfection, it was flowy, glamorous, fabulous and it was teamed with my iconic red rose brooch, my Sabya shoes which I am obsessive about and a heart full of gratitude.
My fashion pieces were ready. I was happy & proud to present my sample sale.
My brass logo looked ah-mazing!
Each painting had poem of resonance to go with and was displayed beautifully with a gold descriptor card next to it.
The décor was fab… it smelt of a blessing.
A sweet story to keep in mind:
I had been looking for the perfect Brass Logo and had spoken to someone in Hyderabad about it but honestly wasn’t too thrilled with his work. On an impromptu trip to Pune, we had gone to visit a friend and I casually just mentioned I was looking for a brass logo. She connected me to a contact who did it to perfection – just the way I wanted it… when I received it, I internally cried and said “shes the one!” It made me realize the power of manifestation, if you truly want something, the Universe will send it your way and guide you to it too. Just ask without fear and want it bad enough. Thank you.
Even with the creation of my actual Logo, my closest of friends gifted me beautiful stationery with my art printed on it for my birthday this year. I had contacted them to create my logo since I loved what they did… even to create my logo was a process, I hadn’t worked with anyone before but I kept affirming it would be beautiful and fabulous (like me!), it would be a beautiful and pleasant collaboration and it truly was! When I came across the options they laid out for me, I was hard-pressed to pick one because I loved what they did with so many of them! They were prompt with their responses and minor fixes, the suggestions and their love towards my brand and me… Heartfelt gratitude to them.
The turn out was amazing. The big hall adorned with art, poems and fashion now had people pouring in… taking up space & attention they deserved. Around fifty people showed up for my Opening Ceremony. My friend Manya introduced me with the sweetest and most thought provoking speech, it really touched my heart and made me feel I chose my inner circle well. To see what she had to say to introduce me, stay tuned. I hope to receive it in form of a letter soon, I truly treasure the words and I don’t think anyone else could’ve introduced me in a more insightful way into Whenky – the artist & the friend.
I boldly exhibited myself, as me with abandon – Unabashed Aunty!
I chose my Mum to be my Guest of Honor, for she is the quintessential Whencut Goddamn woman fierce yet vulnerable, soft yet courageous… a graceful visionary all tied up into one special Human & my biggest cheerleader. She has taught me both to be kind, emotionally available and to stand up for myself. I am blessed to have her grace my ocassion.
I chose my Dad to Launch my Logo, for He is a true embodiment of what success to me is, its in the details of how you treat a person, how you value a relationship, how you love what you do and do it to the best of your abilities with humility these are what I have ingrained from Him. I wanted my Brand Whencut Goddamn to be blessed by him.
I spoke well, with precision and clarity (this is coming from me being super critical to myself). I re-watched the entire event after a week and I was teary eyed. Look how far I’ve come, from a shy lil’ Whenky to the adult Whenky braving all the brickbats to stand tall and unabashedly be himself, A Golden Egg! (Issa inside joke)
People loved the display, the usage of color, the titles, the poems that went along with it, the fashion pieces, the décor, my outfit, my art, my ode to my parents, the retro playlist… My Gold Outfit was perfection, it was flowy, glamorous, fabulous and it was teamed with my iconic red rose brooch, my embroidered Sabyasachi shoes which I am obsessive about and a heart full of gratitude. Each guest who arrived was given a WG business card and a pocket Gratitude Journal as a thank you for coming to the event. They could also browse through the A3 sized catalogue placed on a stand to get a closer look of my work. There were many who especially loved the layout of the catalogue, the descriptor cards and the way the business cards were printed, I heaved a huge sigh because I was at the Printers shop for two whole days with people coughing to the left and right of me and sweat dripping through me… It made me feel the work done was a swell job!
Some of my friends came bearing gifts while some had the beautiful classic flowers, some had elaborate baskets containing Champange, my favorite M.A.N Chardonnay, a personalized apron with my brand name, a décor piece of my art printed on canvas placed on an easel, chocolate… the works! It made me feel celebrated and my heart danced with joy!
On the day of the event, I had sincerely prayed that I hope I am sold out by the event closes. But when I saw the response, my people being there (on time!), showing up cheering for me, loving my work, loving me, giving my work the time it deserved, I bowed down in gratitude and said, “Oh Dear Universe this is plenty …”
I made several sales… It was heartwarming! My family looked toward me and said, “We’ll miss these paintings at home.” It was a bittersweet feeling. It felt like the bidaai of my daughters… wishing them love & honor and sending them away in all their glory. I am proud and happy that the people who purchased the art resonated with it deeply and loved the Whencut Goddamn Women. Many of them requested to attach the description of the artwork (the poems) along with the pieces. This made me smile. Of course I obliged. Another incident that made me happy was two people wanting the buy the same piece, which made me feel so special… Every one wanted their hands on my illustration used in the Logo, they loved it and wanted to buy it – but it was sold.
It’s been over a week, my thoughts have wavered I may have underpriced some things, I should’ve~could’ve~would’ve done in some cases… but I stopped to tell myself, this is only the beginning Darlin’ you gonna live and learn!!! Hakuna Matata! It was a first to remember.
A starry, golden, special night I would trade for none.