The artworks are done with the main raw materials and traditional Iranian materials and combine the Muay Thai art techniques of Leyla Sandshiko and the classical Persian miniature by Arash Groyan.
The idea of this collaboration art series has come to Arash, when he was visiting Leyla’s Muay Thai Art exhibition ‘Counter Punch’ in 2020 at Sathorn 11 Art Space in Bangkok. He felt inspired to create a mutual project that would incorporate both artist’s technics and Leyla accepted the offer and said: let’s do it.
This series is a unique artistic collaboration project between Russian Asian abstract artist Leyla Sandshiko and Iranian Persian miniature artist Arash Groyan. This project signifies unity of past and present, East and West, modern culture and centuries old traditions, sport and art. It represents the universal harmony of our world, that can be found in every communication and interaction, in every sphere of our lives.
This is how the new series was born, out of mutual admiration, inspiration, friendship and freedom, uniting exquisite, delicate elements of traditional Persian miniature and the raw splashes of colour of the abstract art, created with Muay Thai boxing technics.
Creating a Muay Thai art series has been my dream for a really long time. These paintings reflect a simple truth: life is not always a bed of roses, and one can only be successful and happy if one masters the art of Counter Punch.
I have been captivated by the boxing-painting performances of neo-dadaist artist Ushio Shinohara years ago back in Russia, way before I started painting or knew anything about Muay Thai techniques. Ever since I was a little girl my father has taught me how to fight and he always told me to never be afraid of anything or anyone.
When I moved to Thailand I decided to study Muay Thai, and every time, with every punch and kick I always imagine a bright splash of painting appearing on blank canvas. Muay Thai sessions boost my energy level and give me inspiration to create new artworks.
This year, spending the quiet months of quarantine at my mountain art studio, I have found the perfect moment and place to combine my old passions, Muay Thai and art, and to create my new series ‘Counter Punch’.
Be free, do what you love and what brings you joy and never worry what others might think of you. Even if you feel completely broken, stand up over and over again and follow your dreams. Create instead of destroying, and be strong.
The 51 Live Gastro
64 Sukhumvit soi 51
Leyla Sandshiko (L. Sandzhieva) was born in Elista, Russia in 1973. She lives in between Bangkok and Moscow. Her tiny, fragile and graceful statuette-like shape immediately attracts views. The mixture of two bloods, the freedom-loving Kalmyks and the proud Turkmen, has endowed her with best features of both nations. Her name, Leyla, is translated as «Night», and it fits her perfectly: she is mysterious and brilliant, like the night itself.
Perhaps that is why Leyla paints her pictures at night, and dark, passionate tones prevail in her palette . There is something mystical in her artworks, even frightening at first glance. Once you have a closer look at the details, you start feeling energy and depth, and it leads you into the world of color illusions. For Leyla creating a new picture is a healing and meditative process, that helps her overcome the fears and sorrows of the modern world, express love, joy, lyricism and drama of human experiences. Her works are intuitive, spontaneous, unconscious. It’s a form of art therapy, and the abstract techniques help Leyla express complex sensations, that are difficult to verbalize or symbolize.
«Art is my perpetual dialogue with the Universe», she says. «There are numerous worlds, surrounding us invisibly, as well as those existing inside our minds and souls. I portray them in the times of my art meditations. Let me be your guide to these mysterious realms, leave the ordinary and dive into the subconscious, discover it through the prism of my artworks.»
Ever since she can remember, Leyla’s life was full of art and creativity: she painted pictures and decorations for stage plays, studied in music school and performed in the National Folk Dance Ensamble of Kalmykia. Later on, after graduating from Moscow State University of Management, Leyla has founded a successful wedding, exhibition and event organising company. At the same time she continued following her creative path and became a clothing, accessories and wedding bouquet designer. Her collections were displayed in fashion shows in Moscow and Paris.
After relocating to Thailand Leyla has started to devote more and more time to her life-long passion – painting. She has also discovered a new fascination – Muay Thai – and it inevitably has been incorporated in her artworks. Leyla has created a Muay Thai art series, combining abstract art and classical Thai boxing techniques. Each painting of her «Counter Punch» collection is made by punching the canvas with boxing gloves soaked in paint. This series is closer to conceptual art, symbolising Leyla’s vision of the meaning of life: no matter what is happening, fight back, survive, be reborn and keep following your true calling. «Counter Punch» is also a love-letter to Thailand, it’s ancient culture, it’s spirit and the art of Muay Thai.
Leyla dedicates most of her time to creating new artworks and searching for new sources of inspiration. She is extremely productive and holds several exhibitions and art events yearly in Thailand, as well as in Russia.
Artworks are the key elements on any interior, that creates mood, thoughts, ideas and emotions. They set the aesthetics, colour scheme and the feeling of any space. They are essential for inspiration, motivation and pleasure.
«I wish that people find joy in my artworks, decorating their houses, offices, restaurants and hotels!»
Leyla’s artworks have found new homes in the private collections all around the world. She works actively with interior designers and collaborates with sport and fashion brands. «Leyla Sandshiko» is an officially registered brand.
Born 16 April 1981 ,Tehran , Iran
B.A. Persian Paintings
M.A. Communication Art
It is both the extraordinary diversity and mesmerizing detail that strike you when faced with Arash Groyan’s work. This is exemplified perhaps most beautifully in “Battle of Rostam and Afrasiab”, a miniature painting that pays homage to “Shahnameh”, an epic poem – the world’s longest in fact – by the Persian poet “Ferdowsi” between 977 to 1010 CE. It comprises some 50,000 “distiches” or couplets.
Much of Arash’s work is scattered across the globe, acquired by number of important museums including those of his native Tehran and in private collections in the USA, UK, Iran, Denmark, France, Switzerland, Canada, Italy, Tunisia, Ireland, China, Singapore, Indonesia, Kuwait, Malaysia, UAE, Qatar and Thailand. Also one of his paintings sold at Louvre in 2018.
His talents not only focus on miniature painting but in other areas such as rug and carpet design, stage and set decoration. He is the founder of Awos jewelry brand.
Arash has also acted in several films and television series in Iran.