We had the good fortune of connecting with preet srivastava and we’ve shared our conversation below.

Hi preet, Let’s talk about principles and values – what matters to you most?
increasing mindfulness between Artist and Audience matters most to me. meaning that the paintings create observation for Artist and Audience. subject matter is of highest importance and to not be controlled by Artist or Audience. meaning it has to come from a higher plane of existence that encompasses reality and research delivered as a painting the Artist is the Observer and the Observer is also the Artist. One does not exist with out the other. what is connection if my soul doesn’t connect to yours. my paintings speak about things that we may or may not see. these days, one of the paintings im working on is from 15 yrs ago, and only now am I understanding what it means. If we agree with the meaning of the painting, then the only difference is that I painted it. sometimes it is something I am scared to say, and Thank God I’m a painter and I can express myself through Art, otherwise I don’t know how I would express myself. At the crossroads of cultural paths, I am finally on time, and in a space where cross pollination is allowed. I authentically have Indian and American influences, it is the two ends to which I am able to bridge many cultures and religions in between. Most Indian Galleries tell me I am American. And American Galleries tell me I am Indian. And feel very confused about how my work fits in. which it does not, it is unique. I am a First Generation Indian In America. I was born in India and have lived in both countries, and have infused African, European, Latin, and Native American flavors traveling between the two. The work is worth documenting as it has not occurred before, and will not occur again. Currently my work is in a time and space that is doing just that, at Fresh Paint Gallery, in La Jolla, on the corner of Girard and Prospect. I love Figure and Landscape. my style of painting is original, mostly impressionist or abstract. it is oil on a canvas, the illusion of a figure landscape or abstract. I am fascinated by the difference between what we think and what we see. the magic is based on capturing that. I hope you understand what I mean: I paint because I do not express myself very well with words. My end goal is to continue to work and if possible help save lives anywhere in the world. I admire the people that donate billions. I pray that could be me.

Alright, so let’s move onto what keeps you busy professionally?
Being an Artist requires that you have a desire to paint because you have something to say or that something needs to be said through you. having the desire has been easy, being good at it is up to what you think. You, my Friend, are half the Artist, with out You there is no me. that is the greatest challenge to overcome. You must like my work in order for me to survive. I can attend the most expensive Art school in the united states(Art Academy University of San Francisco) , be featured in the top most galleries (currently, Fresh Paint Gallery, La Jolla), and create and show in Art Fairs (Governors Island Art Fair); it still comes down to weather or not You like my work. who are You ? what do You like ? I like to think we are all the same in different ways and different in the same ways. with that said I tell my story as it is beyond me, which includes You. I know that You cry, laugh and love too. perhaps the most important part of life is the conversation that we have with ourselves. Look at Art, enjoy Yourself, as I enjoy myself. My work encompasses a time when there were no Indians in America, I am not speaking of Native Americans that were here centuries ago, I am talking about being the first generation of Indian in America. Teaching Yoga, Mediation, Vegetarian Food, Indian Fashion to Classical Music and dance. I have been the Ambassador of India, and included are my feelings of being so far away from my mother (India), that even she wouldn’t recognize her own daughter anymore. For what is in America is barely Indian. The Indian gallery says you’re not Indian. The American gallery says you’re not American. I say I am an Artist. Orginal Unique, and way ahead of your time, can You get me ?

Let’s say your best friend was visiting the area and you wanted to show them the best time ever. Where would you take them? Give us a little itinerary – say it was a week long trip, where would you eat, drink, visit, hang out, etc.
In San Diego the best time is always meeting the water where it meets the sky, at the beach. Let your mind stretch as far as the ocean does. then of course you are going to get hungry, I like to eat in the sky at a place called Bella Vista Social Club and Caffe. you might catch me painting there or at my studio, in the desert in santee, where my backyard is mission trails, and you can go for a hike and feel green and blue and everything and nothing between you and you.

The Shoutout series is all about recognizing that our success and where we are in life is at least somewhat thanks to the efforts, support, mentorship, love and encouragement of others. So is there someone that you want to dedicate your shoutout to?
My Family is my greatest strength, My son, Raam Prasad Srivastava, who teaches me what love is every day. My Sister, Leader of movement is medicine © , Kirti Srivastava. My Brother, Director of mindfulness, Vikas Srivastava, My Sister in law, Founder and Director of Consciousness and Healing Initiative, Shamini Jain. My Mother who opened the first Hindi school in Chicago and first Indian Restaurant in San Diego, and my Father who teaches me how to paint to this day. My Neighbors in Santee California, Juan Fernandez, who is an older brother to me, who makes everything happen behind the scenes. Juan’s son, Gabe Fernandez, delivered my latest series of paintings, each one the size of a door. Juan’s Daughter, Bianca Fernandez, who takes care of my Son while I paint. My neighbors on the other side of me, Candice and Cassandra Higuera who also take care of my son. And thank you to both of my neighbors who invest in my work. My Friend Amanda Caniglia, who Laughs Cries and also invests in my work. Thank You to the Air, Sun,Moon, Water, and Earth Thank You dear flowers below for joy and hawks above for guidance

Website: www.preetworks.com
Instagram: queenpreet
Facebook: preet works
Other: a “preetworks” and “queenpreet” collection on etsy

Image Credit:
Photo of Preet Srivastava, taken by Alanna Airitam, and Paper bracelet by Bhavana Mehta

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