Monday, July 15, 2024

Artist Anjali Karustis Shares the Art of “Simply Being”

“Simply being” isn’t just a phrase for artist Anjali Karustis, it’s a lifestyle.

The concept weaves into her daily activities, acting as a guiding principle when life’s stresses and pressures can seem all too much—a reminder to herself and others that sometimes just being is enough.

“Simply being” is reflected in Karustis’ work as well, when her mind surrenders to her hand, pushing overthinking aside and allowing spontaneity to create some of her favorite pieces.

In an upcoming Romano Gallery exhibit, Karustis will share a variety of those pieces in a show aptly titled “Simply Being.” Using traditional media, Karustis conveys relatability in her art, inspired by others’ personal mantras as her own unique theme, tied together with her artistic voice and an intentional lack of pressure to conform to a singular idea.

She hopes her free-flowing and intuitive style leaves her work up to individual interpretation by the viewer with little guidance.

“Simply being is a very freeing statement for me,” Karustis explains. “I hope others can relate to it as well. I love being able to share my artistic journey with young artists and help them see the idea of pursuing a career in the arts is one that—with the right motivation—is practical and sustainable, as well as extremely rewarding.”

Karustis graduated from the University of the Arts in Philadelphia with a BFA in illustration in 2020. She serves as an admission counselor for her alma mater now, helping young artists achieve their own dreams, while also working as a freelance illustrator and printmaker. Her commitment to arts education has extended to teaching at Fleisher Art Memorial in Philadelphia, and offering TikTok classes through ArtSphere, Inc.

Karustis currently manages an online store through Etsy, where she sells her printed and illustrated goods. She is inspired by children’s book illustration, which translates into her work, and would love to write and illustrate her own soon.

“In a way, I’ve let my inner child take over in my art and let her finally breathe, paired with the formal training I’ve received afterward,” Karustis shared. “I have found that working spontaneously and intuitively is the only way I like to work—and the only way I can work—because I have always felt the need and always had the fortunate struggle of being able to be only, and purely, myself.”

“Simply Being” will be on exhibit in the Romano Gallery from January 9 to February 2 for the community to experience. All are welcome to Karustis’ artist talk on Thursday, January 25, at 7 p.m. in the gallery.