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Meet Sanjay Sharma

Today we’d like to introduce you to Sanjay Sharma.

So, before we jump into specific questions about the business, why don’t you give us some details about you and your story.
Like all other artists, I’ve been creating art my whole life – always drawing, doodling, etc., but I didn’t start on the path to taking it seriously right away. In college, I was a political science major but dropped out when I realized it wasn’t for me. After working and saving for a while, I went back to college to study art. I took my first sculpture class and made the world’s worst sculpture. I couldn’t let it go, so I took another sculpture class and learned how to weld for an idea I had. I was hooked on sculpture after that.

Since then, working on art has come in fits and starts. I am from Washington, DC., which is an expensive place to live or afford studio space, so I eventually moved to Columbus, OH, and then Houston. After spending some time working at Workshop Houston, an afterschool program in 3rd Ward, teaching kids how to fabricate chopper and lowrider bicycles and a brief stint running my own custom furniture and fabrication business, I decided to dedicate time to making art.

Currently, I am an ‘artist in nesting’ at Magpies and Peacocks, and am working on a few different bodies of work, using new materials.

We’re always bombarded by how great it is to pursue your passion, etc. – but we’ve spoken with enough people to know that it’s not always easy. Overall, would you say things have been easy for you?
I think everyone runs into challenges and setbacks at times. Many of my struggles in making art are often shared by other artists. Finding affordable studio space and time to make work are tough. It is a challenge to find places to show work.

There is no established path for artists to follow to begin a career as an artist, so it’s important to plug into the art community, which can be difficult for someone not from here. Fortunately, Houston has a strong arts community, with organizations like the Houston Arts Alliance providing support.

There is also a robust art scene and a lot of galleries around town, making Houston a pretty good and diverse art city.

We’d love to hear more about what you do.
I am an artist, primarily working in sculpture. I make a lot of work with found objects and steel, but I’m always interested in new materials and methods of creating art. I also occasionally make furniture.

So, what’s next? Any big plans?
I was recently awarded a Support For Creative Individuals grant through the Houston Arts Alliance, funded by the City of Houston, for an interactive installation piece, so I am excited to work on that piece. The idea for the piece will grow my skills and technical abilities, which I will incorporate into my overall art practice.

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