Meet a NYFA Artist: Mala Iqbal

Meet a NYFA Artist: Mala Iqbal

NYFA speaks with 2008 Painting Fellow Mala Iqbal

NYFA: Hi Mala, Please tell us what are you working on and what’s coming up for you.

MI: I’m working through some ideas in small, fast paintings and gearing up to work on an 8-x-11-foot piece. I was totally blown away by the recent exhibit of Bonnard’s late paintings at the Met and particularly inspired to do something similar to his little scribbly daily drawings.

I’ve got several paintings in a group show at Nature Morte in Berlin that opened on March 28 and will be included in “Psychedelic: Optical and Visionary Art since the 1960s”
at the San Antonio Museum of Art later this year. New paintings can be seen at P.P.O.W. Gallery and my website.

NYFA: Who or what is your biggest influence or inspiration right now?

MI: Chuck Jones.

NYFA: If you could transport yourself anywhere instantly, where would you go?

MI: Leonardo da Vinci’s studio (and then for a change of pace over to the first meeting between Marco Polo and Kublai Khan.)

NYFA: What is one technology that you’d like to see developed?

MI: Bring back the Transcontinental Railroad! Make it really transcontinental so it’s possible to go from US coast to coast and from northern Canada to the tip of Argentina.

NYFA: Is there anything that you’d like to see addressed more adequately by artists service and funding organizations? If so, how might this issue be addressed?

MI: I wish there were more grants and free studio programs available to artists around the country. Housing and/or studio subsidies in New York City would be great. The Federal government should bring back NEA grants for individual visual artists and perhaps programs like New York City’s Percent for Art could be expanded.

NYFA: What role has the fellowship played in your life?

MI: The fellowship grant has enabled me to replace studio equipment that was on its last legs and to purchase larger canvases. Through NYFA’s Immigrant Artist Project I’ve been able to put some of my own experiences to good use by helping a fellow artist, Olivie Ponce, a newcomer to the New York art world, get his bearings.

For more information on Mala Iqbal, visit her website.

Amy Aronoff
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