Priyanka Singh is an art director and writer based in Milan. Her work is a reflection of her connection with her own emotions and nature. She aims to tackle current environmental issues through art
TELL ME SOMETHING ABOUT YOU AND WHERE ARE YOU FROM AND WHO WERE YOUR BIGGEST ARTISTIC INFLUENCES?
I’m an Indian based in Milan. Living away from my country, I’m always trying to find a balance between two different cultures. It’s all about embracing my tradition and still blending with what Milan has to offer. After completing my masters in Styling and Visual merchandising, I found myself highly driven to create work that visualises intimate emotions of human behaviour. It was a journey to find my identity and bring my thoughts into reality with images. I worked on emotions like vulnerability, identity and altered states of mind. The more I understood myself, I realised I enjoy nature and replicating my connection with the Earth. For me, It’s nature that influences me, environmental art, movements of the planets and cosmic connection.
HOW DID YOU START AS A FASHION STYLIST? WHY DID YOU CHOOSE TO BECOME AN ART AND FASHION CURATOR, AND WHAT YOU THINK IS DIFFERENT ABOUT THIS ART DIRECTION PROFESSION?
Growing up, I really enjoyed fashion, it was a way to communicate. Bright colours, big accessories and huge hair. Imaging a possibility to do this as a profession really intrigued me. However, over the time I enjoyed art direction and eventually curating the art that is inspired on visualising the connection with Nature. Fashion hasn’t been my focus lately. However, in coming months I’m planning to curate Fashion from an ecological perspective. To be honest being naked is the most sustainable way and maybe decorating your body with earthy elements like flower, natural paint and feathers could be beautiful. But on the other hand I know it’s too idealistic and we are not even ready to accept the beauty of human body in raw and authentic form as a society yet. There is a lot of body image issues that we face due to unrealistic beauty standards. Now, brands are also focusing on styles that covers the face completely and to me it’s just sad because that is where we lose individuality. Art direction on the other hand sets me free from these boundaries as it all comes down to being creative and do what I feel right to bring out certain emotions. It goes way beyond clothing and fashion.
HOW DO YOU CONNECT YOUR ART BUT STILL FLOW WITH THE FASHION TRENDS IN YOUR WORK?
As mentioned earlier it’s not about following trends in particular. I only do things I relate to and trends are mostly ephemeral. One thing can be considered cool in a second and totally outdated in next. When I create any art images, fashion is not my focus. At a certain point, I would include some garments that I may find interesting for the communicating the story but that is not always the case. Now, I’m searching designers that are creating something that is firstly sustainable and secondly unique.
WAS IT DIFFICULT TO CURATE MODERN ART BUT STILL HAVE YOUR BELIEVES INTACT?
Art influences people and can shift conciseness. It’s not about picking any artwork but rather finding art that has a purpose. I know now we live in a free world where expression has taken so many forms. Art is everywhere and in everything. However, with this liberty we must communicate important issues and find solutions with art. The act of any revolution doesn’t always have to be on the streets, by people gathering and revolting to be heard. I do enjoy that, but also there is a beauty in a revolution that starts silently, stimulates intellect and deepens perception. For me art is a way of revolting against the havoc that we face as a community. Personally, it’s not been difficult to keep my believes intact since I started exploring this form of art to create change, I have actually come across beautiful individuals who are doing these things and it makes me really hopeful.
ARE YOU MORE OF A SPONTANEOUS PERSON OR THE KIND WHO LIKES TO PLAN EVERYTHING FROM BEFORE WHEN IT COME TO YOUR PROJECTS THAT YOU WORK ON?
I’m somewhere in between. I do plan things in advance but I always look forward to experimenting. I’m open to ideas and creative inputs. Any work takes team effort and it’s always about being open and creating something good collectively.
WHAT IS YOUR MAIN GOAL AS A PERSON WHO PROMOTES FASHION BUT IS STILL CONNECTED TO ITS "MOTHER NATURE ROOTS"?
I haven’t been promoting fashion lately. But, I would do it soon, nothing leaves the land and the oceans and my entire idea would be to curate something that will blend with the environment rather than being a waste in the end. The fashion that I do enjoy the most is the sense of style that tribes have, I remember scrolling down a book about indigenous people at my friends place and saying to everything ‘well that’s fashion’, ‘that’s the look’ maybe it’s because that sort of fashion is more in harmony with the Earth and has an ancestral meaning.
For me having this connection is the centre of my being and rest everything has to fall and to be adjusted into this connection. I have to focus on fashion now because I know it really stimulates people, so for me fashion would again be a medium to bring to focus the environmental issues. I would rather say I’m a person exploring my roots with nature and I will promote nature through fashion.
WHO ARE YOUR TARGET AUDIENCE, AND HOW DO YOU MANAGE TO ATTRACT AN AUDIENCE WITH YOUR WORK?
My target audience is anyone and everyone, I’m not trying to sell anything so for me it’s all about sharing experience and knowledge. Anyone who enjoys human body, emotions and nature might find my work intriguing.
IS THERE ANY FUTURE PROJECTS OR COLLABORATIONS YOU WANT TO SHARE WITH US TO EXPAND THE "DARE" HORIZON IN A PROVOKING COLLECTIVE SOCIAL EXPERIENCE?
I’m currently developing my own platform called Planted Journal that bridges the gap between human and nature through art and romance. I think for me this platform is something that I have to offer as an individual to the society. You must always give back to the society and this is how you create change.
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Images provided by Priyanka