Hello! My name is Misha Japanwala and I am an artist and fashion designer. I was born in London, raised in Pakistan, and am now living and working in New York.
What fascinates me about art is the ability to turn ideas, feelings, thoughts and questions into something tangible that can be viewed and interacted with by the world around us. I like to create things that tell a story, but that also have an unfinished narrative which is left for the viewer to discover and interpret, whether that is by standing in front of a canvas or wearing a garment and weaving their own experiences and sense of self into it. In either case, I am not the one writing the conclusion, and it is this process that makes me so passionate about art.
My research and inspiration has inevitably always led me back to my upbringing, where I am from, and the culture in which I grew up. As individuals, we all have an innate bias, and as a designer and artist, the best I can do is to reflect upon and submit myself wholly to what inspires and drives my process of creation.
I want to put into the world something that makes people think, question and dream. Isn’t that, in the end, what art is all about?
I graduated with a BFA in Fashion Design from Parsons School of Design in 2018, where I spent the past year working on my thesis collection Azaadi, which was inspired by honour killings and domestic violence amongst underprivileged women in Pakistan. The narrative of my collection quickly transformed itself into what it means to be a Pakistani woman in general, and the struggles, judgement and opinions we have to face, no matter what our background. My journey made me question so much about what I thought I knew about my country, its people, and my relationship - as a woman and through my privilege - to the place where I am from. These are themes I hope to continue working on and representing in my art moving forward.
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