Interview with Mr. Aman Khanna
Aman Khanna graduated in Graphic and Information Design from London College of Communication. After working in two-dimensions for eight years, Aman has lately taken to three-dimensional design with his contemporary clay sculptures called Claymen, inspired by Aman’s admiration for the space that surrounds him, and the common man who inhabits it. Let’s get to know more about him through our correspondent Ms. Anubha Das.
In your childhood days was it the clay you used to play with?
No, not really. Clay is recent, about 3 years old for me.
When & how did you decided to take up pottery as career?
Pottery is not my career and I don’t think I do pottery in general. I am trained as an Information and graphic designer, so to speak. However, I am interested in human psychology in general and I like to capture my own, thoughts, feelings and interactions through clay and claymen.
Was your family supportive?
Family has always been very supportive about everything that I have done.
Who is your inspiration?
I guess my life experiences!
What were the struggles that you faced at the starting of your career?
The usual questions did pop up initially in my head like why am doing this or where will it take me, but I ignored all of them and followed my heart. I just kept of doing it, enjoying the very slow process of making and finally getting to understand that it’s all in the process and the satisfaction of the final outcome is short-lived. It was more like learning about life through this medium. Technically there is a lot of hit and trial, no one is going to teach you everything, and you just have to learn from your own experiences and experiments.
What kind of responses did you get?
The response has been great so far, I have been able to connect personally to many people, which gives me more food for thought.
A few years ago, ceramic art was on the verge of being dead, what are your views about it?
I am glad it didn’t! I feel there are always certain passionate people who in the end rescue such dying art or craft forms. Life tends to go in a circle. Human beings feel maximum comfort when there is a balance in life, so ideally they try to balance it all out by going back to basics. However new innovations are always needed for such rescue missions.
Do you advice students to take this career?
People should take up what they feel they would enjoy doing, and could do it for a long time. Clay in today’s day and age could be a great stress buster.
What do you feel is the best educational preparation for this career?
One day I just got a bit of clay at home and started playing, building forms with it. I took some classes but, I didn’t do much wheel work, I still don’t, I have some help for it but I hand-mould, glaze and fire. One can go and learn some basic techniques and then it really depends on your own drive.
Who would you give tribute for your success?
I have always been a keen observer. However, guess I would have to give that one to people who I came close to, interacted with, who made me think and realise a lot about life with their own conduct.
How would you like to express your work, including your source of inspiration and your intentions?
There is a lot more inside of each one of us as compared to what’s outside, we just need to tap into our huge resource and potential.
What institutes would you suggest that have good art courses?
There is Delhi Blue Pottery, Sanskriti in Delhi, Golden Bridge Pottery in Pondicherry and so on. In fact, there are hubs all over the world now.
Do you think mentors should be made available to students for clay pottery?
Yes, why not. Right mentorship always helps.
What are your future plans?
Just keep on having fun with what I am doing.