Akshata Naik (b.1990, Mumbai, India) is a contemporary visual artist, educator, researcher, and administrator based in Toronto, Canada. Born and raised in Mumbai, Akshata has lived in Vadodara and the UK. Her works reflect upon her lived experiences of moving homes, cities, and countries. Through a lens of immigration, war, displacement, home, and belonging. She works towards co-creating with her viewers an immersive experience and interactive art installations which consist of drawing, painting, ephemeral temporary sculptures, and art in virtual reality. She was an Assistant Professor at Parul University in Gujarat, where she taught drawing and painting in India before moving to Canada. She works as the Program and Gallery Manager at Arts Etobicoke, a Toronto based not for profit organization that supports local artists and runs educational programs along with curating shows in the Storefront Gallery and is very invested in community arts through her job and art practice. She is a newcomer to Canada and soon after she arrived in 2017, she became active in the arts scene, widely showing her interactive art with several communities across Toronto.
Akshata has exhibited internationally in North America, Europe, and Asia, including solo and group exhibitions at galleries in the UK, Canada, and India. Most recently, her explorations of digital art and (VR) virtual reality artwork, ‘Song of the water’ was projected on a building in Lakeshore Park, Toronto, Canada as part of the BigArtTO initiative by the City of Toronto in partnership with OCAD University. Her popular interactive and immersive art installation ‘Bloody Boats 2.0’ was first shown at Artcore Gallery, UK (2016), and at the Gladstone Hotel for Nuit Blanche (2019). She was also invited as the guest artist by the town of Collingwood to lead an experiential public art project. Her piece, ‘Frozen Voyage’ was installed at the council chambers, townhall of Collingwood. She is also an accomplished speaker, presenting at De Montford University, UK, THE MUSEUM in Kitchener-Waterloo, the Gathering organized by Cultural Pluralism in the Art Movement Ontario (CPAMO), Emergence Symposium organized by Neighbourhood Arts Network, Humber College in Toronto.
The recipient of notable grants from the Canada Council for the Arts and Toronto Arts Council. She was also awarded two gold medals in her final year masters display. Akshata is a graduate of the Maharaja Sayajirao University of Baroda, (B.V.A & M.V.A) Gujarat, India one of the renowned art schools in India.