YabYum Seven: Swapna Das

swapna das 01

All photos courtesy of Swapna Das

Who are you and what do you do?

I am Swapna Das, a visual artist living in Phoenix, Arizona for the past six years. I was born and raised in New Delhi, India.

How did you get your start?

Ever since my childhood, the innate creativity came naturally to me and I have always had an ever-growing desire to explore my talent. My high school art teacher encouraged me to study Art and earn a Bachelors in Fine Art (BFA) degree. I realized that art is not merely about the tools used in its making, but also a medium of expression. Doing my MFA from Arizona State University also fostered my passion and opened me up to the infinite number of creative minds and possible artistic avenues.

swapna das 09What inspires you?

My work reflects the values of Indian narrative art and has always been a mirror image of my internal and external environment. I get inspired by the current social and political environment and how it affects my personal life. I derive my inspiration from the works of Julie Heffernan, William Kantridge, Aneesh Kapoor and Indian contemporary artists like Jamini Roy, Jogen Chowdhury, Vivan Sundaram and many more.

What do you like about AZ?

Arizona has been my home for the last six years. I like the warm and sunny weather which reminds me of my birth place and at the same time I love the winters in Arizona as I have never been a fan of bulky winter coats. I love the dramatic beautiful silhouette in the sky during sunrise and sunset and the desert landscape of pastel colors. Phoenix has transformed into an art hub of various opportunities for upcoming artists, art communities, culture and creative practice. I see the city has great potential for the future art world.

swapna das 02

“Ordeal” | charcoal on paper | 30″ x 22″ | 2015

Where can we see you(r) work?


What would you like to accomplish before you die?

My goal is to showcase a unique blend of eastern and western culture through my artwork based on my personal and professional experience in life. I learnt that art is not merely for artist and art appreciators but can also play a role in creating harmony and peace in society. Before I die, my dream is to open an Art school for under privileged kids because my mission as an artist is to grow beyond my niche and establish my identity; and touch human lives.

swapna das 1What is your mantra?

My spiritual practice of Buddhism is my mantra which helps me to experience the deeper understanding about my work. The spiritual practice has made me believe in my life’s greater purpose and to pursue a path which can bring happiness into lives of every human being who becomes a part of it, directly or indirectly.


swapna das 03

“Instinct” | charcoal on paper | 22″ x 30″ | 2015

swapna das 13

%d bloggers like this: