Shirsekar Siddhesh

  Today Eco aware art gallery is going to Introduce Shirsekar Siddhesh from Mumbai India.

Shirsekar Siddhesh Sushil Sheetal lives in Mumbai, India. Currently working as, a Design Faculty at Vasantdada Patil Pratishthan’s College of Engineering and Visual Arts. He is also pursuing a Doctoral Program in Art and Design (Ph.D.) from India, with Bachelors (B.F.A.) and Masters (M.F.A.) (by research) from Sir Jamsetjee Jejeebhoy (J.J.) Institute of Applied Art, Mumbai, India. His specialization subjects being typography and lettering along with Advertising Art and Ideas. His aim towards the career is to strive continuously to learn and develop. He focuses on his Project through a constant emphasis on process quality and methodology to deliver superior value for others as well as own satisfaction. He aims to deliver maximum information to society through his knowledge and provide ease in the academic years to come. Having read and published more than 20+ research papers on National and International platforms with research papers published in peer-reviewed International journals under IEEE, JETIR, ICoRD, IFERP, Springer, UGC Care listed journals to name a few. His research project ‘Learning with Braille and Typography’ has got a National Award nomination. Having cleared UGC NET in Visual Art (Including Drawing ,Painting/Sculpture). He has a book registered with copyright with the title ‘Learning with Braille and Typography’ and he has received numerous academic and professional awards like Maulana Abdul Kalam Azad Excellence Award-on National Education Day 2020 with (AICTE) and Shikshak Kalyaan Foundation, Global Teacher Award, Rashtriya Shiksha Ratna Award, The Global Teaching Excellence Award, Global Teacher Role Model Award to name few. Working as a volunteer Art Director since 2012-2019 at Bookwallah Org. where their vision is to transform the lives of orphans and children of trauma by sharing the gift of imagination and healing with storybooks His paintings are in the collection in Bangalore, Mumbai, Chicago, Osaka. He has also received Maharashtra State Awards for Painting which reflects inner beauty and strengths. This artwork reflects various living creatures are with harmony with the different layers of nature which are embodied in the composition. Therefore, we should start appreciating nature as he has faith in giving back what we acquire.

We asked him a few questions about how his work matches the vision of our gallery, for which we are presenting the answer to you with his work.



        QUESTION 1 - WHAT IS THE ROLE OF ARTISTS TOWARDS ENVIRONMENT?

“I grew up in Mumbai, from an upper-middle-class family, my father is a Doctor and my mother a homemaker, she had pursued M.A. (Literature) it was indeed a learning environment to grow. But one thing I recall now is that I used to be fascinated by posters, hoardings on the streets. When I visited my nanny’s place in Girgaon, near South Bombay now Mumbai I remember hand-painted signboards and shop signs, so fascinated by the color palates. I use to wonder who makes them now everything is digital but you will still find such exclusive hand-paint boards in Girgaon and maybe that is one of the reasons I used to get excited to visit my nanny’s place. Then further on, I am talking about my school days one of my teachers who taught us drawing and crafts Mrs. Dalvi she had a beautiful sense of design. I used to wonder how fascinating it is that she used to design posters or draw on chalkboards from simple art material. I wondered as a child can I do the same? Later as I grew I was fascinated by biology and zoology subjects in my college days Prof. Patankar as I recall taught us to observe and appreciate specimens from the laboratory. I started liking the idea of appreciating the natural species, and environment around followed by my foundation days with Prof. Wagh. I feel these were a few instances that influenced me to become an artist and respecting the art material. So I find the environment we grow in as a child plays a vital role to become who we are. It affects radically me as an artist/ designer to appreciate the environment. Growing and learning in design/ art background we come across plenty of art material. As an artist, I feel I am blessed that I can celebrate my profession by utilizing minimum material and create awareness for the same at the same time through designs. I guess no other profession can do both things simultaneously. I truly believe being an ‘artist’ has helped me to be more sensitive towards the environment and spread the message to other professions.”



QUESTION 2- WHAT ARE SOME OF YOUR FAVOURITE WAYS TO REDUCE WASTE IN YOUR ARTWORK?

“Another interesting thing I’d like to tell you is, we used to have these competitions in school, this is in about 1990s. And people in class used to get up and say I want to be a doctor, engineer, etc. I would stand out there and say “I want to become an artist So one of the things was, that I had no particular family background in this area and I used to wonder why not do something which I like and even my family was supportive about it. And then I went on to decide that I would join the Sir J.J. Institute of Applied Art, Mumbai, which is another long story! As I was one of the sincere and hardworking students, it was a shock for people and teachers that I was going to join an art school. They had not even heard of Sir J.J.I.A.A. or of what all happens there. But anyway, I started with my Foundation course year where I was being taught to appreciate my art material and value my thought process. I always endeavoured to do all my assignments with hard work and sincerity. Self-exploration was at the core of most of my works. As an artist, I feel using a minimalistic material with maximum output is a must where I did not mind using every inch of my paper without wasting it. While producing any artwork I make sure I plan things before and make a note to myself what am I expecting out of it. Indeed, few things are additional as composition is truly intuitive sometimes. I stick to the plan and work with reusing my material as ‘I never throw away my any artwork or material’. Today also you will find small pencils, ancient brushes, old papers, dry colors, tubes in my wardrobe, so I believe nothing is waste we can use it in future so stop purchasing new and check your storage first.”


QUESTION 3- WHAT IS YOUR TACTIC FOR INFLUENCING PEOPLE WITH YOUR ARTWORK ABOUT WHY THEY SHOULD GO FOR ZERO WASTE?

“I believe if you are an average artist it is absolutely fine but attitude, that all matters to make you a good human being. A good human being is more sensitive about what I feel and if he is an artist then indeed it is a masterstroke. Every day, every minute, everything is changing. The environment is full of diversity; dynamism is constantly surrounding it. There are many creative people as I grew up I got an opportunity to exchange ideas with them. One of them was my Guru Late Prof. Samip Sawant. He is my mentor and we choose each other for the learning process. He always believed in hard work and the total utility of a concept. I remember accompanying him with various workshops, installations, seminars, etc. where we used maximum material made out of scrap. I truly believe growing is important but, grooming in healthy circumstances is more important and so this interaction of creativity and technology is very essential. Learning and painting have been an intimate part of my journey as a designer. I always feel a sense of responsibility whenever I start to design a particular artwork. As each visual resonates with messages and as a designer, I need to radiate a good message to society. As I claimed earlier go back to your wardrobe and check your existing material and find an elucidation of how to use it first. There are no specific ‘tactics’ as you ask but I always go to the grass root cause of the problem and appreciate more the original surface significance, textual appearance, more unfinished tactile experience rather than making it look mechanical or artificial maybe. Which practically influences others to avert unnecessary material which is maybe a zero-waste concept for me. I wish to urge you to go deeper into the subject as depth is important for any domain. I would sum up by saying that have always been concerned about maximum utilization of whatever you encounter even if it is day-to-day mundane activities.”


QUESTION 4- HOW DO YOU START DOING ZERO WASTE ARTWORK AND HOW DOES IT AFFECT YOUR LIFE?

“I do not start doing zero waste but, I practice doing zero waste because I believe it should not something to be taught but something we have. Yes, I mean you should get influenced by the concepts, and right now living with Gen Alpha with massive exposure to media through various platforms it is easy to connect and spread the message. My aim towards my artwork is to strive continuously to learn and develop. I focus on my Project through a constant emphasis on process quality and methodology to deliver superior value for others as well as my satisfaction. I aim to deliver maximum information to society through my knowledge and provide ease. We are not on this earth alone and if we can have a positive, meaningful impact on even one life, then we will become part of the solution and not the problem. My designs whether for communication or publishing or information design comes with certain intentions. I not only inculcate the concept of zero waste in my artworks it might be painting or an installation but also dwell with it. We need to grab whatever opportunity comes on our way for a good cause and aid nature. Nature itself is like meditation and practicing zero waste management is self-healing. I understand that healing is not an overnight process but, takes time, don’t give up don’t get discouraged take one step each day at a time. It has indeed helped me and I am sure practicing it on a bulk level will make all of us a better person mentally, emotionally than we were yesterday.”




QUESTION 5- WHAT IS ONE SIMPLE SWAP, ARTISTS COULD MAKE TODAY THAT WOULD MAKE A HUGE DIFFERENCE IN ZERO WASTE?

“I would just say ‘Enjoy the process’. But enjoy what is worth, which reflects you and get to the root cause of a design, but don’t ignore it. The ‘it’ you enjoy is the most important thing. You have to decide for yourself and be particular towards it. As we all are driven by different cultural types, designer works in time due to maybe industrial revolution whereas the concept of ‘time’ may be bit lenient due to cognitive revolution for artists. We as human being need to believe in immutable reality rather than being rational entity or self-conscience men. An artist who gives birth to an artwork comes with a concept which follows a thought process which undergo various circumstantial changes which may lead to a prototype and then a product. Again with the help of feedbacks he undergoes product iteration and brings it back. Previously Art, Craft and Design where different things but now all these things are interconnected with each other. As a designer myself we need to hammer the second stage where we involve the thought process. Because everything has to have a justification as a designer it cannot be open ended. We need to critically observe our thought as we are designer or for that matter everyone is inquisitive about our surrounding. Cutting down undue resources can be an immense way to facilitate. It is complex phenomenon but not impossible, let me give you a mundane example, we clean our teeth daily some people have habit of wasting water even if they are not utilizing by just keeping the water taps open but, let us suppose I make you stand not in front of the washbowl but somewhere else, the chances of you wasting water is zero. It is that minor change that we need to inculcate in our lives just like an invisible habit which will ultimately train us as a better human being."


QUESTION 6- HOW DO YOU FEEL ABOUT THE FUTURE OF ZERO WASTE RECYCLING ARTWORK?
“Design should be trained from the grass root levels, from the very basics. I often meet my colleagues working in MNCs and criticizing the academics. I disagree with them on some points as to unknown something primarily we need to ‘know'. Academics lay a stout foundation. Begin a designer and an academician myself I may comparatively analyze the situation and I can say it is not that worst! People should acquire to see things in that way, value them. Then most of our problems would get solved automatically. It is indeed a collection of disciplines when we talk about society. It is never an entity governing alone but a mass working together. I would like to quote Indian poet and scholar of Indian literature A.K. Ramanujan-
“You want self-knowledge? You should come to America.
Just as the Mahatma had to go to jail and sit behind bars to write his autobiography.
Or Nehru had to go to England to discover India."
Things are clear only when looked at from a distance We as designers create our domain so resilient, we make ourselves interdisciplinary in a large way and we show that design is immersed in every part of our activities. But living in society adds on responsibility on other disciplines too. Rightly stated in Kantian theorem, the construction can never inhere in the things since it is only produced by the mind, is not true of the social construction, which is rather immediately recognized in the things namely, in the individual souls. i.e. every individual of the society defines and acquires meaning from other individuals. So the future lies in all our hands and not just by recycling an artwork because the traces of that artwork might be having a valid process as it is in existence. We need to work together."



QUESTION 7- HOW CAN ZERO WASTE BE IMPLEMENTED AT THE ARTISTS COMMUNITY LEVEL?

“In a community, there are different levels individuals perceive one another. Indian culture at present is diverse from what it used to be. It has transferred into being a union of diverse thoughts and cultures, resultant from the encounter of new rights of passage, independence, and acceptance of these new ideas. Many Indian Artists get influenced by Western Culture. But, the acceptance of Western influences does not taper the richness of the Indian culture (in fact, welcoming minority ideologies is a very Indian thing to do). It makes us more adapting, fresh cultures arise for example Hinglish becomes an accepted language. Even while talking about varied viewpoints and diversity in India, he never brings up the religious diversity and is only focused on the Vedic outlook to society. Waste as a concept is subjective where a person might find something waste but I might find its raw material for my future project. Zero waste management can be inculcated in fresh brains with the concept of ‘Jugaad’ where artists constantly need to be put in conditions to perform. As we likely say “Performance Under Pressure”. Experimentation can be conducted with a group of subjects (artists) and allot them with limited tools, surfaces, and mediums and if hypothetically if they deliver affirmative results then maybe that can be a manual course to train the subjects (artists) to stay in their limited palate (pun entirely intended). This experimental research concerning zero waste can be applicable for other domains too like engineering, architecture, etc. As likely mentioned previously we need to work collectively and if everyone contributes their bit then maybe we can collectively bring change to the ecosystem.”


QUESTION 8- WHAT ARE YOUR FUTURE GOALS FOR YOUR COMMITMENT TO ART SUSTAINABILITY?

“Design research, teaching, and practice are growing as the artist become more conscious about it. Growth of the potential role of design is revealed, because of the growing interest in product and service innovation (not only process anymore), and in the changes in perception of the quality of an offer: its cultural and aesthetic dimension. I would say to do so, let us try to shed some light on the different dimensions in which the design world has interpreted and developed sustainability. Minimizing material consumption means reducing the material consumption of a certain product; it is better if it is at every life cycle stage and throughout the entire service offered by the product; that is, corresponding to the functional unit. Using up less material diminishes the impact not only because less material/resources are extracted (pre-production), but also because it avoids processing (production), transportation (distribution), and disposal. Sustainability has emerged as a broad concern for society, I believe due to the too much information provided to the masses it has become a buzz word and people are taking it lightly and underestimate it. I am not saying it is an overrated term but for me, you all have been practicing it before we made a ‘hype’ of it. As a designer, my aim is always to empathize with my design keep a minimalistic approach where ever possible, but we also need to fulfill our own needs without compromising the ability of future generations to meet their own needs. The compositions which I practice are using recycled paper; rice paper is one of my favorites, bit unfinished, raw compositions interests me too.
I would like to quote English fashion designer Stella Nina McCartney –
“The starting point is not design; the starting point is sustainability.”
So, my aim will be reducing waste, investing in renewable energy, and supporting organizations that work towards a more sustainable future.”


QUESTION 9- FROM THE EMPTY PAINT TUBES, TO THE PLASTIC ACRYLIC BOTTLES DO YOU EVER THINK THAT HOW MUCH WASTE AN ARTIST PRODUCES UNINTENTIONALLY?

“While I am pursuing my Ph.D. there are numerous readings I am preparing interestingly I came across one great book by French anthropologist Philippe Descola; “The Ecology of Others” which opened me to the world. Here Descola states that “a good way to understand the status of a scientific problem is to study controversies”. A holistic understanding of situations is important as stated in my previous answer we live in a society where we depend on each other. I believe there for an artist to create a work it depends on his material and vis a vis manufacturer produces them as he is dependent on the purchaser, so I think as a designer I need to take this question optimistically because I alone cannot answer it we need to have a chain discussion and believe me that will be an endless one. So if we are talking only about ‘artist’ producing waste unintentionally then let’s also consider the art that he produces from that material what about that ? Bit controversial because these artworks go for an auction for a charity event maybe one of them can be saving the environment. Indeed, it is a vicious circle to experience. I can very well relate this situation hypothetically; after World War I the human cost was horrendous. More than 16 million people, both military and civilian, died in the war. An entire generation of young men was wiped away. It is tragic to consider all of the lost potential, all of the writers, artists, teachers, inventors, and leaders that were killed in ‘the war to end all wars.’ But although the impact of the First World War was hugely destructive it also produced many new developments in medicine, warfare, politics, and social attitudes. Dadaism manifested yes to life and no to war not to forget L.H.O.O.Q. by Marcel Duchamp. My point is we observe over the timeline always find a way out in a positive way and I am truly sanguine with developing product design technology"


QUESTION 10- DO YOU EVER THINK THE IMPORTANCE OF ZERO WASTE, HOW TO CREATE WASTE - FREE ALTERNATIVES, AND THEN CREATE YOUR ARTWORK.

 

“I understand that we live in a society where there are good and bad designs, but it is on one’s perception what suites for himself. For this, I would like to quote German-British statistician and economist E. F. Schumacher of the book Small is Beautiful – “What is at stake is not economies but culture, not (just) the standard of living, but the quality of life” When people are at leisure they adore art, not everybody has museums or art galleries on their to-do list. My question here, why is it so, is it they don’t like appreciating beauty or aesthetics? We need to inculcate the concept of appreciation. May that be not just land up in an art gallery, it can be anywhere. It is possible to reduce-reuse-restore but certain things we need to accept as they are and try to come with a way out. Let me add with the help of designing-engineering and technology we are doing fantastic jobs! I am sure having zero-waste is an excellent concept but concurrently we need to understand that how many industries, job opportunities we might lose as millions are supporting their lives on it. Maybe we need to channelize those energies first and then yes maybe we can think about waste-free alternatives. By the time we comprehend it will be too late. As likely stated by French anthropologist and ecologist Claude Lévi-Strauss- The world began without man, and it will complete itself without him.” As an academician, designer, and artist I feel we need to do out a bit either as poetry, dance, designing, cooking, whatever interests you and not just be a fly on the wall. We carry our soul and conscience wherever we go and we have the opportunity to do what we want and face our consequences. Respect not just the artist but a human within him because he is doing his job right!"

Many of his works are made on recycled cardboard and handmade paper. At the same time, he also inpires his students to make their own artwork with waste, recycled and found materials as far as possible . We truly appreciate his effort towards eco friendly artwork.


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Comments

  1. Lovely views. Brilliantly expressed. Loved the QAs. The quote " ...the environment we grow in as a child plays a vital role to become who we are... " very true.

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  2. Lovely work n lovely thought sidhu love u

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  3. It was really very interesting to read something on ZERO WASTE ARTWORK... Loved it.

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  4. Great writing....smart expressions. Inspiration for young generation....

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  5. Beautiful thoughts and work.
    Congratulations Siddhesh.

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  6. Siddhesh you have enlightened through you blog about choosing career path not on the basis of your parents profession but on your likes and interest. Your innocence and hardwork is depicted in your work. Kudos

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  7. This blog has opened my eyes to a lot of possibilities on zero waste artwork. The point that Mr. Shirsekar Siddhesh said, that he "PRACTICES" zero waste, truly gives a different perspective. I've got inspired by this blog and I am surely going to relook at the way I use the products. Thank you for this eye opening blog for Artists! It is a must read!

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  8. You have truly enlightened one to follow your own path and achieve dreams and turn into reality. Your innocence and hardwork is depicted in your work. Kudos.

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  9. A true hardworking person and this questions and answers are truly arranged in a methodological way to open up the views towards society. Would love to read more blogs from Siddhesh in collaboration with Ecoawareartgallery!

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  10. Wonderful Execution! Proud moment for us.

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  11. I love the range of his work and his minimalistic perfection. Each work is unique the previous.
    Intricate details and aesthetics in the every form he has portrayed He is indeed practicing what he is saying in the blog.. All the best Siddhesh

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