Say hello to one of our favorite young artists –Samyukta Madhu! You've likely seen her bold-eye-catching artwork re-uploaded all over Instagram. Her art is a refreshing change to the typical depictions of brown women in mainstream media. It speaks to those who fully embrace sexuality, independence and overall self expression. It's not everyday that you see fine artists take their creativity to the level that Sam has. Also, it's just plain dope.
Madhu was born in Chennai, India, and in 2012 she moved to New York to attend the prestigious Parsons School of Design. Her work got her noticed by Adidas where she was hired as a designer last year. She's back in India now and we're excited to see all of the creative content she'll be putting out.
We had the pleasure of getting to speak to Madhu about her artwork and her journey as an artist!
What inspired you to start creating digital illustrations?
I've been drawing ever since I could hold a pencil. I was always into digital art and the way art lives in cyberspace, so I learned how to draw digitally when I was around 12 years old. I fancied myself as an animator or a game designer, but at the end of the day I know I'm meant to be an artist because it comes so naturally to me.
We love how bold and relatable your artwork is. What kind of reaction have you received from the South Asian community?
It's mostly been positive because a lot of people get where I'm coming from because they've gone through the same thing. On the other hand, I get a lot of misogynistic haters (both men and women) who think I draw naked women to get Instagram likes. I don't really care.
Your artwork is so vibrant and truly has the Sam Madhu stamp. What inspired your current aesthetic?
I love color. I'm a terrible minimalist and I love bright pops of color to flood my field of vision.
What was it like being featured in Elle India's South-Asian Artist piece?
It was really awesome! I've always wanted to be in a fashion magazine. I think being featured alongside other South Asian creators was a really uplifting experience too.
What was the transition like uprooting your life from Chennai to NYC and attending Parsons?
I felt like Alice falling into Wonderland! I absolutely loved my life in New York. It taught me about the world and it taught me how to think freely. Now I'm back in India but I will treasure New York forever.
What are your favorite TV shows and what are you currently binging?
Oooooh I don't really watch TV anymore. Although I just binged Bojack Horseman and I really really enjoyed it.
Who were your favorite singers/bands growing up?
Such a weird mix...I like everything from rock to rap... Growing up I used to listen to a lot of cheesy rock – like Papa Roach, Greenday, Linkin Park etc but I also really liked girly music like Avril Lavigne and Kelly Clarkson. Now I'm way more into rap and indie music. I like this rapper called 6lack a lot. Frank Ocean, Kendrick, J Cole, currently listening to Lil Wayne's new album....I used to love Kanye but now he's gone crazy with all the Trump stuff...so not a fan anymore.
What can we expect next from sam?
Nothing!!! Just kidding. I'm going on vacation so you can expect some IG stories from Europe. Work-wise, more dope art – sneakers and emojis coming soon.
We love Madu's unapologetic attitude and aesthetic! We're definitely here for more dope art and would love a pair of sneakers designed by her! Check out the links below for her social media and where you can purchase her merch!
Merch: Sam Madhu
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