Chagla Mehmet is a London based artist who works with multiple media including; photography, drawing, and painting. The main focus of Chagla's drawings is the composition and layout of her work, demonstrating how less can sometimes be more. Focusing on the empty space in her work that plays just as an important role as the forms she draws, Chagla feels that the open space within her drawings avert the viewer's eye to the more complex parts of the pieces. Exploring the symmetrical composition as a form that gives comfort to those who can’t stand irregularity, Chagla attempts to convey the irony in looking close up at her drawings and realsing the lines are made from a complete asymmetrical mess an explores the transitional space between reality and imagination.
1) Which art movement do you consider most influential on your practice?
Ukiyo-e and Japanese art.
2) Where do you go and when to make your best art?
I tend to find myself drawing in the evenings after work, which can usually carry through to the morning. My best work comes from those sessions. I don’t take up much space when I draw, usually I’m on my desk, depending on the size…sometimes I even work on the floor (with my larger pieces). But I don’t think the location matters, so long as there aren’t many distractions around, I can create anywhere.
3) How do you describe your 'creative process'?
I usually carry around a small sketchbook wherever I go. I get a few sketches done on the tube, even at work…whenever I have a little time. So when Im about to start a new piece I usually look at these drawings and I start intending to replicate what I’ve got in my sketchbook, but most times I end up creating something completely new and different.
4) Which artist, living or deceased, is the greatest inspiration to you?
5) If you weren't an artist, what would you do?
I've always been into psychology, the way the human mind works — I would probably be doing something in that area.
6) What do you listen to for inspiration?
Classical, movie scores and neo-soul.
7) If you could own one artwork, and money was no object, which piece would you acquire?
'The Kiss', Gustav Klimt.
8) If your dream museum or collection owner came calling, which would it be?
9) What is your key piece of advice for artists embarking on a fine art or creative degree today?
Don’t let anybody’s opinion stop you from doing what you want and how you want.
10) What is your favorite book of all time (fiction or non fiction)?
The Lord of the Rings series.
11) If you could hang or place your artwork in one non traditional art setting, where would that be?
Somewhere immersed in nature, like the woods, or a botanical garden, even the jungle!
12) What was the biggest lesson your university course or time studying taught you?
Things won't be handed to you, you have to work for it.
13) And finally, if we were to fast forward 10 years, where would we find you?
I hope to be in a place where I can freely continue and develop my practice. Perhaps even live of my art.
Learn more about Chagla and discover her collection of drawings.