Founders | Women Series | Anahita Kayan
Women series is a monthly edit to explore creative entrepreneurship amongst women globally. Through this series, we wish to understand creative journeys, challenges, inspirations and develop a community. This month we interviewed Anahita Kayan of The space at 9/2, Founder of a concept space in Kolkata, India.
Tell me about how your artistic journey started. Did you have artistic influences growing up? What education/ training did you receive?
My journey started quite by chance, though I have always been creatively inclined and intrigued by all elements of design and retail. At college, I pursued Economics as it seemed right then (and I still don't think it was a bad decision). A few years after returning to India, I decided to start a digital archival of essays, travel stories, fitness mantras and recipes and I was keen to launch it with something called The Guerrilla Art Project. For this, we invited 6 people from different creative fields to come and interpret an old abandoned space (which is now outside my gallery). This made me realise that I enjoy curating and visual design and I have never looked back since.
What has been the source of inspiration for you( people, places, cultures etc)
Publications, architecture and poetry
Could you share the conceiving of The space at 9/2 project? We are curious to know about the process and its development.
The Space At 9/2 was conceived as a platform and 'space' for artists to be themselves and not produce pieces and collections based on market trends or what would work - essentially, it also allowed me to channel my vision, in a way I thought it should be. It has now matured to also work with and consult brands to communicate their true identity through visual, photography and space design.
What is the step forward for your personal projects?
I don't think I can plan my personal projects. I suddenly have an epiphany of a concept and then I work towards it.
Could you comment on the current landscape of independent art/ curation industry in India?
Misunderstood and mistreated. Period.