By Martin Ramirez/ south news editor
Moving from Iran to the U.S. is a big change, especially for an artist like Pooran Lashini who didn’t know English and struggled to communicate verbally and artistically.
“The first year was a little bit hard because the culture was different, the language was completely different and it was so hard for me as a good artist,” she said. “I was a professional painter in my country. It was so hard for me to come here, and I cannot talk about my art, I cannot express my creations for the people. I was just really confused.”
When Lashini moved to the U.S. after getting married, she enrolled on South Campus and found the school’s ESL program that offers learning courses to speak, read and write English.
“I just told myself, ‘You have one choice … to learn the skill to communicate with the people and know the culture,’” she said. “Little by little, I went over the language, and my art got stronger as well because now I can communicate with my art and the language with the people.”
Lashini makes art for a reason: It can’t be kept inside.
“Creating something isn’t in your hand. It’s like something is pulling inside your soul, and you don’t have a choice. You should bring it out,” she said. “It’s something that comes from your heart.”
Lashini was born in Tehran, Iran, where she grew up surrounded by art and culture.
“Heritage is the most important part of any human being’s life. I have a very artistic culture in my country,” she said. “I learned many things, many techniques … because of my heritage. It comes from my great, great master teachers. They taught me, and I learned it and I used it. I have a very great respect for my artistic background.”
She’s inspired by everything around her and found inspiration in American culture.
“I think the most inspiring thing for me is the world. When I’m looking around in nature and even humans, I’m always thinking this is the best thing,” she said. “Now, mostly the thing I am working with is acrylics, and it comes from American artists. I use it in my background to mix the color, and I love how they use the light color instead of dark color. Still, I’m looking for details exactly like my heritage art.”
She describes her art as pure and colorful work that tells a story. Lashini enjoys color in her art.
“I am not in this land — I am not in the Earth — I’m living in the sky when I play with the colors, and I don’t even feel ashamed to say it. It’s the best part for me,” she said. “When you color your art, you give it life.”
Lashini rarely sells her art, for she wants it to stay in her family. However, she donates her art to various charities so they may sell them for a good cause.
“It’s a part of me, and it’s like my children: I try to keep them, I don’t try to sell them,” she said. “Already, I signed a couple of my artworks to them [niece and nephew].”
Her advice for artists and writers: Be honest while they work, keep working and don’t compare their work with other people’s work.
“Don’t try to build something. First of all, looking for something inside your soul is different than building something,” she said. “We are not mechanics. We are artists, and our imagination should have a room in our heart and our soul.”