By Ken Kemp,
Director of Communications for FLITE TO FREEDOM
A first generation American, Ayush Saha is senior at St. Mark’s School of Texas. He’s already established himself in the Dallas Metro community as an accomplished painter, writer, organizer and champion of the arts. It’s no wonder that he’s been selected as a featured FLITE ARTIST.
Decades ago, his parents found each other and married in Calcutta, India. Determined to pursue their American dream, they relocated to Texas with little more than a serious work ethic, a love for this country and belief in each other. They studied and labored with focus and drive. Their businesses have brought much success. According to Ayush, his mom and dad transferred their values of hard work, personal service, relationship building, honor, trust and customer focus to their only child.
It doesn’t take long to get caught up in Ayush’s enthusiasms.
While he has yet to take a formal art class, he first picked up a pencil and then a brush. He transferred his vision to canvas. At the FLITE’s ART of FREEDOM event at the Lawley Gallery, his large floral paintings of open blossoms created explosions of color that drew the crowds. But these works are just a start.
Ayush heard about FLITE through his Mom’s close friend, another Flite Artist, Shayema Rahim. After a long and energetic conversation with our founder, he resonated with Flite’s mission – it felt like his own.
Ayush started a project in his second year of high school called The Festival of Illustrated Literature (FOIL). Fascinated by the interplay of the canvas and the written word, he paired fellow students together and challenged them to collaborate. One would write a compelling narrative. The other would sketch or paint a matching illustration, bringing the text to visual life. His first event attracted fourteen artists from four different high schools. The most recent FOIL event featured thirty artists from nine schools.
At first, he was skeptical that high school students would rise to the challenge. But to his surprise, his classmates stepped up. It’s become a high profile event in Dallas, and has established friendships and motivation to study and grow. Here are some of the art projects born out of the events (from his website):
Land of The Free- An analysis of today's United States
Expressionism- An expression of the human mind, body, and spirit
Beached- A representation of all things related to the ocean
Industrialism- An interpretation of modern technology
Nature- An exploration of the natural world
Parallelism- A study of dichotomy (light/dark; good/evil; slave/free)
World Travel- A photography exhibition with photos from home to the other side of the world
· Nonrepresentational- An exhibition with no underlying theme (up for interpretation)
Ayush is especially interested in a love of country. His depiction of a three colored blossom (red, white and blue) headlined the USA exhibition. The text focused on diversity, pluralism, opportunity and optimism for the future.
The sale of his art has contributed to Flite’s success – and through his own organization, FOIL has raised nearly $8,000 to support charities across the Dallas area.
These days, Ayush is submitting applications to colleges and universities across the country. I asked about his plans – he wants to focus on global health, either as a physician (health) or ambassador (policy) to assist in fighting disease and hunger world-wide.
Ayush’s zeal is contagious.
We predict great things for this young artist.
You can see more of Ayush's collection on his website - https://www.saha.gallery