In Picture : Malathi With Her Daughters
Acrylic On Canvas
Oil On Canvas
What’s the common theme between a doctorate degree from IIT Madras, multiple trophies at State level sports championships, exhibitions at art galleries, a career as a teacher and a business analyst, and a certification as a life coach and Spoken Sanskrit? Ask me – I can tell from first-hand experience. It’s never always a bed of roses but in retrospect I think the breadth of experience has been really helpful.
Having grown up entirely in Chennai, I got married while doing my Ph.D. I worked on and off and turned my focus to bringing up my two wonderful daughters. Between bringing them up and being a full-time parent, I also found time to do all the things listed above and more. As the family traveled between US and India, I found new things to do as we ended up in each new city and I had to make new friends and participate in new social circles.
I draw a lot of inspiration from my father who was physically and mentally active till the end, and my mother, who is a professional Carnatic vocalist, and even today practices her singing every single day. From them I have realized that while you may grow old physically, yet you can stay young mentally and emotionally. I enjoy trying out things and I strive for each a high level of competence in anything I try. Whether it be playing in the women’s cricket team here in Atlanta, or working to my black belt in karate, or teaching and learning to speak in Sanskrit, I am focused on the end goal. There are many distractions on the way — internal issues such as age-related health issues or external issues related to my day job as a business analyst or other family events, etc. But one of my learnings has been that I need to focus on my own happiness too in addition to those of others. In a sense, as the kids grow older and get busy with their own lives, it’s important for me to do something for myself.
Recently I started illustrating for children’s stories along with my college friend who writes the stories. This was a completely new venture for me to bring out the scenes in stories myself and, also catering to kids. Taking to the challenge and completing couple of illustrations was immensely satisfying and a remarkable experience. This also led to participating in painting competitions after several years and earning prices too which is a huge morale boost for women of my age. I also volunteer to teach Sanskrit for Indians and non-Indians to read, write and speak. This is such a rewarding experience as I become a student and a teacher at the same time learning along with teaching in several ways during teaching. I feel motivation and opportunities come to everyone. It is for us to take it and make use of it in the right manner and if passionate, it will give us joy and satisfaction in anything we do.
However, to summarize, there are 3 areas or activities I feel that have been with me all through my life: painting, music, and sports. I have had art exhibitions and sold several of my paintings both in India and the US. I have experimented with different styles such as Thanjavur paintings, portraits with oil, and polymer resin clay artworks in the form of sculptures and mural works. I used to be part of a music band in Chennai and even started one in the US long back. These days it’s a lot more of informal singing in online live sessions with groups in India and Us. I also got an opportunity recently to perform in a radio live show in the US. I have taught art and music lessons and the experience of sharing with others and learning from them is unique and unmatched.
About Author :
Malathi Venkataramanan was born in Chennai, India in 1970. She has a wide repertoire of mediums and subjects but focuses primarily on wood (Thanjavur style), canvas, ceramic and glass.
She received her Ph.D. in Chemistry from the Indian Institute of Technology-Madras in 1998. She had a natural inclination to all forms of art and music from a young age. Following the completion of her education she was able to devote more time and energy to the arts and consequently was able to refine her techniques in painting on various mediums. While primarily a self-taught artist she has received informal training through other experienced artists and teachers in the US and India. Her paintings have been displayed in many informal exhibitions. She has also had commercial success with her paintings within her social circles.
Malathi’s attempt to venture into the professional art scene begins with her maiden exhibition titled “Divinity and Nature”. In this exhibition she focuses on the themes of natural sceneries and divine representations of Hindu gods. This exhibition presents her work on canvas, glass and with the Thanjavur styles.
She is also an accomplished singer trained in Carnatic music and currently a student of the Hindustani style of music. She lives in Georgia, United States of America with her husband, two daughters and her dog.
Website : www.jansamarts.com
Facebook page : https://www.facebook.com/jansamarts
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In Picture – Dr. Malathi Venkataramanan