Life is both brutal & beautiful; I seek to capture and explore these elements in my work and aim to help others see the beauty beyond the brutality. Like many others I wanted to be an artist from a young age but was dissuaded. Fortunately I also had other areas of focus such as mental health, not least due to the needs of family members, particularly my father. My own health has also been a challenge, in regard to immunity as well as mental health, but I have learnt to see these things as an opportunity for growth.
I was sexually & psychologically abused from toddler hood and I have found art and also writing (poetry) a more constructive way to make sense of the traumas. More constructive than drugs & alcohol but they’ve also had their place.
I started painting in oils, my favourite medium, at age 15 due to my admiration for the technique of the artist Tamara de Lempicka. I also suffered from chronic PTSD from this age til just a few years ago. Other early influences included Frida Kahlo, Diego Rivera, Marc Chagall, Van Gogh, Pollock, Hockney and symbolism in religious and mythological. I am clearly not a ‘contemporary’ artist & life/my brain were too fraught to deal with further art education although i got as far as A-level. I needed a job & to pay rent so had to switch direction to my other area of interest.
At the University of Birmingham I gained a BA in Social Policy and worked in social work for several years, including mental health, dementia, children & young adults. I also had increasing mental/emotional & physical health issues (low immunity) which led me to this present path where I am now working independently as an artist and ‘healer’. I had to get through two psychotic episodes and sepsis first however – all related to dealing with my early history.
Art at the Mexico Gallery in Belsize Park, London (now closed) really inspired & encouraged me, and it is here that I got some idea about the Outsider/Art Brut movement. PTSD can mean a very chaotic life – but it has given me a wealth of experience – and I am grateful to be at a place now where I can live the benefits of my earlier efforts. Art as therapy has been an integral part of my survival and I recommend this approach to anyone. Just start with a doodle or angry scribble and see where it takes you! I am presently creating a series of images which help my peace of mind and communicate my belief in both personal and universal growth amongst other things. My images/designs are often God/dess, spirit, nature and mandala influenced. My new images also unify my varied Indian-European heritage. Thank you for visiting! www.etsy.com/uk/shop/InfiniteLoveArt Facebook.com/ChloeShaliniArt Twitter: chloe.shalini Instagram: ChloeShaliniArt