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In this episode, Tanmay Shah interviews Shurooq Amin, a renowned artist from Kuwait. They discuss Shurooq’s artwork ‘Hearts of a King’ and the controversies it has sparked. They also delve into the gender dynamics and women’s role in Kuwaiti society. Shurooq shares her experiences as an artist in Kuwait and the challenges she has faced. They explore fun facts about Kuwait, including its close affinity with India. The conversation concludes with a discussion on the previous generations and life in Kuwait before the discovery of oil. In this part of the conversation, Shurooq Amin discusses life in Kuwait before the discovery of oil, her passion for diving and yachting, her PhD in Ekphrasis, and the power of words vs. images. She also reads a poem titled ‘Taboo’. In this part of the conversation, Shurooq Amin discusses her inspiration and creative process in painting. She shares that her paintings are often triggered by injustice or hypocrisy in her environment, and she visualizes the completed image in her head before transferring it onto canvas. She also talks about her early memories of creating art and how it served as a form of catharsis and expression. Shurooq reflects on the challenges she faced as a single mother and the importance of art in maintaining her mental health. She also discusses her role in giving a voice to underrepresented communities and her desire to make the world a better place through her art. The conversation concludes with a discussion on her innovative art exhibitions, including the first NFT exhibition in Kuwait and an exhibition for the FIFA World Cup in Qatar. In this conversation, Shurooq Amin shares her childhood experiences and love for reading. She talks about the loss of her father and the significant changes in her family dynamics. Shurooq discusses her difficult teenage years and her strained relationship with her mother. She reflects on feeling alone and resenting her mother during that time. Shurooq also talks about dealing with personal issues and eventually reconciling with her mother. She shares her thoughts on the last day of her life and the legacy she wants to leave behind. Shurooq discusses her impressions of India and other countries she has visited. She talks about her approach to making money and giving back through her art. Shurooq shares the best advice she has received and the most priceless gift she has ever had. She reveals her dream travel destination and discusses her guiding principles in life. Finally, Shurooq reflects on the power of art and its personal significance to her.In this episode of Rocklaz Radio, Tanmay Shah and Laura Grinbarga discuss books and podcasts they have read and listened to. They share their favorite podcasts, such as Akimbo and Freakonomics, and talk about the benefits of reading digitally and listening to audiobooks. They recommend books like The Artist’s Way, Big Magic, and The War of Art for creative inspiration. They also discuss the importance of finding the right time to read and making notes while reading. The conversation touches on spirituality in art and the impact of books like The Alchemist and Siddhartha. They also mention books on negotiation and personal development, such as Think and Grow Rich and The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People. The conversation covered a wide range of topics, including book recommendations, favorite genres, and spiritual and philosophical discussions. Some of the recommended books include ‘Atomic Habits’ by James Clear, ‘The Warrior’s Apprentice’ by Lois McMaster Bujold, ‘The Silver Metal Lover’ by Tanith Lee, ‘Mahabharata’ and ‘Bhagavad Gita’ by Shri Shri Ravishankar, and ‘Business Sutras’ by Devdutt Patnayak. The conversation also touched on the importance of finding balance and substance in the content we consume.


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00:00:00 – Start
00:01:59 – The Kiss from King of Hearts
00:14:15 – Cultural and religious scenario in Kuwait
00:18:05 – What Made You Stay?
00:22:23 – On the brighter side…
00:24:31 – Fun Facts of Kuwait
00:29:23 – Will you find Oil if you dig anywhere?
00:30:36 – Equipped for Sand but what about Rain?
00:32:14 – Fashion in the Middle East 00:36:06 – Kuwaities marring Indian Women
00:37:32 – How were things before Oil Discovery?
00:40:09 – Story of SubaDiving and Yachting
00:45:53 – How did you develop an interest in Yachting and diving?
00:47:59 – Pilates pro too! Why? How many Certificates?
00:51:26 – PHD in Ekpharasis!? What the ….!?
00:55:54 – What is more powerful? Image or Word?
01:05:41 – Taboo. Poem by Shurooq
01:13:01 – Process of Creating Art?
01:19:13 – Earliest memory of creating Art? How did you Learn?
01:23:33 – Sad Marriage, pregnancy and Solo Art Exhibition
01:31:53 – What Drives you?
01:34:35 – Mental Health, Dealing with Challenges
01:37:30 – Scarlet Letter on the Chest
01:39:09 – Hippocrates in the middle east
01:40:31 – Kuwait’s First Exibitions, Wagmi
01:42:42 – Brilliant FIFA Exibition of Quattar
01:48:08 – Signature Round: 3 people Living or Dead for Lunch? And the Questions to them?
01:49:46 – You are not ordinary, Why? Fathers Story?
01:53:21 – Orfan Childhood
01:55:46 – What would you do if today was your last day?
01:56:50 – Thoughts on India?
02:00:17 – How to Make Money?
02:02:07 – Best Advice
02:02:27 – Priceless Gift
02:02:56 – Favourite Book, Movie, Food
02:04:07 – Where would you go if you could travel anywhere in the world?
02:04:55 – What do you like to do for Fun?
02:05:42 – Guiding Principles in life?
02:07:45 – What does Art do for the World?
02:08:51 – What does Art mean to you?
02:09:37 – Parting words



• Life in Kuwait before the discovery of oil was simple and peaceful, with close-knit communities and a strong sense of trust and hospitality.
• Shurooq Amin’s love for the sea led her to pursue certifications in diving and yachting, allowing her to explore the underwater world and navigate boats on her own.
• Ekphrasis is the study of the relationship between art and poetry, and Shurooq Amin’s PhD focused on analyzing and disproving Leonardo da Vinci’s theory that a picture is worth a thousand words.
• The power of words lies in their ability to engage the reader’s imagination and create a personal connection, while images can be interpreted in various ways and may require physical presence to fully appreciate.
• Shurooq Amin’s poem ‘Taboo’ explores themes of censorship, identity, and the power dynamics between men and women. Shurooq Amin finds inspiration for her paintings in the metaverse and uses art as a way to express her thoughts on injustice and hypocrisy.
• She visualizes the completed image in her head before painting and often works backwards from that vision.
• Art has been a form of catharsis and expression for Shurooq, helping her cope with challenges and maintain her mental health.
• She sees her role as an artist to give a voice to underrepresented communities and make the world a better place through her art. Childhood experiences and love for reading can shape a person’s lifelong passions and interests.
• The loss of a parent can have a profound impact on family dynamics and individual well-being.
• Difficult teenage years and strained relationships with parents can lead to feelings of loneliness and resentment.
• Dealing with personal issues and finding reconciliation with loved ones is a journey that takes time and effort.
• Art has the power to change the world and impact people’s perspectives and emotions.
• Identity is deeply intertwined with one’s artistic expression and can be both a source of fulfillment and challenge.


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