What's the Best Advice You've Ever Received?

With India K

Introduce yourself! Who are you?
My name is India K, I’m an artist living and working in Brooklyn, New York. Much of my work deals with themes of self-worth, vulnerability, and memory. I write, take photos, and create installation pieces using my words, photographs, and more. I’m an outgoing anxious person, I love tattoos, and all my favorite movies are about ghosts. 
 
What is one thing no one really knows about you?
I’m named after a character in a Eudora Welty novel.
 
What’s the best advice you’ve ever received?
I was going through a really difficult time recently and someone said to me, “You didn’t ask for this journey.” Just that one simple statement. It’s not a direct piece of advice, but it was a reframing of the existence I was experiencing. I started seeing everything that was happening to me as a journey, something that I am just going through, that isn’t permanent but will change. Horrible things happen but we never ask for them – I think I needed to hear that too because in any situation that is negative, I think we instinctively find ways to blame ourselves or figure out why this is happening. The answer is, it’s happening for reasons beyond our control and often having nothing to do with us. That is the first thing we forget when encountering hardship. We want to. control it so we try to attach it to ourselves.
 
What would you say to 16 year old you?
Wow, it really fucking sucks right now, doesn’t it? I get it, everyone is stupid. The thing is, they won’t get less stupid, but you’ll get more confident. You’ll find things you like to do and platforms for your voice that you don’t even know exist yet. But you have to keep making stuff and not stop. Anything you can, lots and lots of it. Also, you’re not goth and some of the music you listen to is maybe bad.
 
What message do you think every woman should hear?
Men are not necessary.
What is the biggest thing you’ve learned along the way?
You’re going to end up hating a lot of your old work and that’s okay. Don’t get too romantic. It’s okay to reinvent yourself. 
 
Why do you love to travel?
I believe it is the greatest thing anyone can do. If you are privileged enough to have the resources to travel, and you don’t, I think it’s really irresponsible. We should be seeking our other cultures, people, and experiences even more now than ever. I try to travel consciously. Have authentic experiences and not be an offensive ignorant tourist. However, I do think that is inevitable, especially being a white American tourist, so learning to listen and apologize and be open is an important part of it as well. 
 
What is your favorite meal?
Right now, grilled octopus with green olives and a glass of champagne. 
 
What is something on your bucket list?
See a blue whale in the wild.
 
What are your biggest passions?
Art-making, intersectional feminism, writing, beer, pizza, my friends, historical non-fiction.

More About India

India K is an artist living and working in Brooklyn, New York. Much of her work deals with themes of self-worth, vulnerability, and memory. India writes, take photos, and creates installation pieces using her words, photographs, and more. She’s an outgoing anxious person, she loves tattoos, and all her favorite movies are about ghosts.

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