Meet Maya Luthra: the artist creating socially distanced prints

With studios closed, Maya has found new ways to collaborate online with fellow artist Molly Graham


Who

is Maya Luthra?


Maya is a fine art and art history graduate, currently based in London. Passionate about communication through written and visual media, Maya uses her practical knowledge to inform and elevate her theoretical investigations. Maya's uses abstract painting as a tool to navigate her experiences as a woman of colour. Her recent investigations have focussed on considerations of colour, shape, line, and texture and how slight tonal shifts can alter the way colours sit next to one another.



Why

did Maya first get into painting?


Maya: “There is no set beginning to my painting practice, when I went to Manchester School of Art in 2017, I experimented with printmaking, textiles, and paint in my first year. Through these experimentations I ended up focusing on painting and printing which is how my practice continued for the rest of my undergraduate studies.


Up until March 2020 when the pandemic began and I was forced to leave the studio, I would incorporate screen printing techniques with painting exploring optical flatness, playing with composition and colour palettes. Once I didn’t have access to these facilities due to COVID and working from home my practice became centred around painting, rather than equally balanced between paint and print. One day I would love to return to the screen printing bed and explore fusing paint with print.”


“I’ve used my art historical knowledge to inform and contextualise my creative practice. For me, the link between practice and theory is essential; you cannot have one without the other.”


How

has Maya’s art history studies inspired her creative practice?


Maya: “Studying a joint honours degree was essential to my practice, I’ve used my art historical knowledge to inform and contextualise my creative practice. For me, the link between practice and theory is essential; you cannot have one without the other. Studying history of art allowed me to consider my place within the contemporary art world; where do I fit in? Which movements does my work align with? Where could I draw influence from? Reading, research, and critique is crucial to my practice. Although, I have to say, it’s harder to discipline myself to step back from my painting practice to read now I’m not at art school!”



What

are the collaborative prints all about?


Maya: “My most recent print run was a collaboration with my good friend and incredibly talented artist Molly Graham. We studied on the same undergraduate degree and worked everyday in the studio together. Whilst the concepts behind our practices are different, we both explore colour theory, play with texture, and missed our collaborative studio days which were cut short due to COVID. So, over the course of a few months we send each other versions of the prints for each other to add to. It has been such a wonderful process and so special to work together (albeit from a far) again. The prints are a fusion of our practices, we are so happy with how they turned out :)”


“Whilst the concepts behind our practices are different, we both explore colour theory, play with texture, and missed our collaborative studio days which were cut short due to COVID.”

Where

can you find Maya’s work?


Follow Maya on Instagram and check out her prints via her website.