There was an unmistakable streak of contentment in her voice as Elizabeth Davis, a seasoned Indian artist living at Al Mouj Muscat, walked us through her villa to display varied aspects of her tryst with art.
A self taught artist that she is, Elizabeth said she has never been tied down to one style, and that she keeps discovering her varied abilities with the paintbrush as she experiments with her passion every single day. The contentment stemmed from the fact that she revels in letting her creativity not spare any corner of her home. And, if you glance around, you see art everywhere!
“I really don't remember when I started out, because ever since I can remember, I have been drawing and doodling, and doing so till today. I got a good foundation in art from the school I went to in Cochin (India) wherein we had a wonderful art teacher and a fantastic art department which taught us everything from sketching and oil painting to tie-and-die, marble painting, mosaic painting, leather-craft, lithography, etc,” says Elizabeth who did not pursue higher studies in art as she was very good in academics and went on to do her masters, brushing away her natural penchant for art.
A marine biologist and banker, Elizabeth said, after completing a fulfilling career, she chose to nourish her talent for painting just about 5-6 years ago in Oman and has ever since done numerous artworks across varied styles from realism to abstract art. She also underwent a few short courses to rev up her talent, including a very fulfilling art workshop conducted by the National Museum of Oman during the early part of 2020 which refined many elements of her individual prowess in painting.
Today, every room and passage of her home is filled with art, not just in canvasses but also in the arrangement of furniture and accessories, the choice of shades of upholstery, indoor plants, artefacts placed strategically, and all of these have a definite bearing on her wellbeing and composure, she admits.
“People say every artist has his/her own style, but I am artist without any particular style. I am still experimenting and I don't want to copy any particular style. As much as I do art, I also do craft. I am very much into reusing, recycling, upcycling, and I would love to convert all that goes into garbage bins into beautiful crafts,” Elizabeth said. And if you look around her home, a lot of disposables, like empty plastic water bottles and glass bottles, have been converted into beautifully painted table décor, lampshades, etc.
“Art is part of every artist's life and I think every person is an artist in some way. It does affect my way of life, my thinking and the way I observe things in a different way,” says Elizabeth, adding, “art has not only touched every aspect of my life but also the lives of those I live with. My three sons have not taken after me, with regard to art, but I still feel they might have it within themselves, only waiting to be discovered at the right time.
Elizabeth takes delight in whatever she does and it gives her immense pride as well as fulfillment. If there is something she looks forward to, it is holding her own solo exhibition in the near future.
1. Cave at Wadi Bani Khalid
This painting depicts a cave at Wadi Bani Khalid and was created with a fusion of acrylic paints with drizzles of water during an art workshop with an Irish artist in Oman
2. Coffee time
This set of six paintings were made eleven years ago using instant coffee and water as the medium on paper. “The best thing about using coffee and water is you don't have to spend on paints,” says Elizabeth.
3. Fascination for bells
This collection of mini bells adorns a ledge on the landing leading to the first floor bedrooms. They were bought as mementos during her trips to different countries over the years.
4. Al Huzn
This painting, depicting two sorrowful women, was prepared during a creative imagination course conducted by the National Museum of Oman in early 2020. It was created using a template of two decorative silver spoons.