Meera Agarwal is a former Silicon Valley public relations specialist and now based in New York where she is pursuing a second career as an artist and art instructor. Meera has been painting for three decades and her works are both representational and abstract, inspired by nature, her native India and travels. She teaches painting in local after-school programs, conducts workshops, and is also a volunteer art teacher at an enrichment center for underserved teens.
Meera's award-winning paintings are routinely juried into prominent exhibitions in New Jersey, New York and Connecticut. Her paintings have found homes in private collections spanning the United States, Canada, India, the U.K. and Australia. Being an Indian cinephile, she volunteers on the Discover Indian Cinema advisory board of the India Cultural Center in Greenwich, CT. In addition, Meera volunteers at the Rye Arts Center in Westchester County, New York. She is a certified Art-o-Mat* artist. Whether it’s starting a new painting or teaching an art class, Meera believes in approaching it with the same openness, excitement and curiosity of a beginner. She holds a Bachelors degree in Management Studies from the Birla Institute of Technology & Science (BITS) in Pilani, India, and is a Masters graduate of Corporate and Public Communications from Seton Hall University in New Jersey.
*Art-o-Mat (art vending machine) Series: Travel the World with Meera’s WorldArt.
My Kolam/Connections series is based upon ‘Kolam’, a traditional South Indian art form. It involves math-based geometric line compositions drawn (with rice flour) around a grid of dots. Kolam is a daily pre-dawn ritual of women and these artworks are drawn at the threshold of homes or businesses. There are various theories about the significance of Kolams; they can used as an auspicious welcoming, an ode to Mother Earth, a method to ward off evil, and as a symbolic “charity begins at home” gesture to nearby ants, bugs and birds who might feed on the rice flour.
I was an active participant in Kolam and Rangoli competitions during my elementary school years. Kolam can be as addictive as Sudoku, and I resumed practicing and studying this art form more closely in 2019, giving it centre stage in my paintings. For me, even as we are physically distanced during the pandemic, it is a reminder that we are connected and bonded in infinite ways through mutual experiences of joy, pain and healing. This series of works allows me to share my culture and symbolizes that we are all connected/braided/woven together as part of one race - the human race.