Shahzia Sikander Quotes

  1. I was very, very quiet. I was always a loner, hardly spoke, and I was quite a nerd in school. So I was an outsider always.
  2. My whole purpose of taking on miniature painting was to break the tradition, to experiment with it, to find new ways of making meaning, to question the relevance of it.
  3. For me, drawing is a way of navigating the imagination, and it remains the fundamental vehicle of my practice. Drawing allows me to be at my most inventive.
  4. I don’t really listen to music when I work. I really have to focus on one thing at a time. I like a lot of quiet and peace when I’m working or when I’m thinking or when I’m reading.
  5. In the end, the gesture of painting becomes almost meditative, like a ritual.
  6. I like driving. A lot. I think that’s something I just enjoy the most. I can, at a moment’s notice, drive across the country if, you know, I had to.
  7. For me, I always feel that I’m not sure what’s going to happen next year or what’s going to happen the year after or what’s in the future. So I really kind of just focus on the project at hand and try to do the best that I can. And that, for me, is as much as I can control.
  8. Not to be boxed in, to be able to transcend boundaries: for an artist, it’s essential.
  9. When I first arrived in Houston, I was fascinated with the elaborate styles of cowboy boots and thought they were incredibly exotic. They also seemed to be a central part of a specifically ‘Texan’ identity, one distinct from being ‘American.’

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