Global News Montreal. Richard Dagenais, "Focus Montreal."
Visual artist Aquil Virani believes all of us can draw! The McGill philosophy student has been working on a project called "We Are All Artists". Instead of hanging a painting on a wall in front of people, he painted in front of people and made them part of the creation process. His second solo show, "Copycat", opened this week in the basement of McGill's Leacock Building.
CUTV. Alexandre Blais, "Arts&Culture."
CUTV reporter Alexandre Blais caught up with Aquil Virani at the vernissage for his solo exhibition, COPYCAT, held at the Fridge Door Gallery at McGill University. Aquil is an emerging visual artist, currently completing his BA in Philosophy and Management from McGill University. He strives to make art accessible to the average person and to break down the stereotypes of exclusivity and pretentiousness associated with contemporary art.
The Bull & Bear (McGill). Gabriel De Vuyst, "COPYCAT."
Several famous art celebrities have said that everyone has the potential to be an artist. Aquil Virani, a fourth year McGillian believes the same. But he's taken this idea one step further...
McGill Daily. Rachel Reichel, "Drawing inspiration from those around him."
Aquil Virani is a visual artist, but he's not your typical individualist, stand-alone painter. Aquil is unique in that he prefers to collaborate with others and include everyday people in his work. I had the chance to ask Aquil a few questions about his new show, his inspiration and that infamous TEDx event.
Leacock's Magazine. Jessica Prupas, "COPYCAT."
It would be hard to find someone more enthusiastic about the idea of involving the viewer in every step of the artistic process. The charismatic Virani, a Philosophy and Humanistics major at McGill, is the people's artist.
Peace Arch News (BC). Alex Browne, "Southridge grad solos with McGill exhibit."
Aquil Virani's art exists where painting and performance art cross paths. The Surrey-raised 2008 Southridge School graduate, 21, opened his second solo show, COPYCAT, at McGill University's Fridge Door Gallery Wednesday, and he says it combines pieces created 'live' at different events over the last few years.
The Link (Concordia). Katie McGoarty, "Canvassing the Masses."
If you've ever felt intimidated by an art show, alienated by performance art or just like you didn't understand, Aquil Virani wants to teach you a thing or two. "Being an artist is a mental attitude," he says...While Virani says that his unconventional process is personally rewarding, it's also a unique experience helping people realize that they can be a part of something they may not have thought was possible..."That quote, [...] 'Happiness is only real when shared,'" he said. "That's what I get out of this. It wouldn't be the same if I couldn't involve people like I do."
McGill Reporter (Official McGill News). Katherine Gombay, "We are all artists...even if we don't believe it."
Aquil Virani's art is full of unexpected and quirky connection. ...There are stories within stories. And though the connections and convolutions of the images that flow together are Virani's own, the original drawings which inspired them are all by members of the McGill community.
McGill Tribune. Nick Petrillo, "COPYCAT."
McGill undergrad Aquil Virani presents his opening vernissage of COPYCAT, featuring the "We Are All Artists" Project. After two years of interpreting drawings made from countless participants at McGill who swear they "can't draw," Virani has created an interactive painting determined to prove them wrong.
Montreal Mirror. Sacha Jackson, "Artsweek (ARTISTAT)."
"ARTISTAT: The number of solo shows McGill student and artist Aquil Virani has exhibited, including his latest, COPYCAT, which opens at McGill's Fridge Door Gallery (855 Sherbrooke W., Leacock building basement) this Wednesday, February 15th at 5:30 p.m.: 2."
Thought Napkin. Heather Lee, "A visual perspective."
While the speakers were engaging and the talks quite brilliant, a lot of the audience's attention was being draw to one corner of the room where a piece of artwork was being created. The artist, Aquil Virani, agreed to an interview in which I found some very enlightening thoughts on art, life, and creativity.
The Concordian. Aquil Virani, "How to create your own art show."
The day had finally come. With the final touches in place and the paintings perfectly straight on the walls, my stomach filled with nervous excitement as I waited for the initial rush of guests. My exhibit, MINDFCUK, was opening as the McGill Fridge Door Gallery's first-ever solo show.
McGill Daily. Christina Colizza, "Sht tht wll fck wth yr mnd."
People often find themselves confused in modern art galleries as to what the works mean. Virani's current show "Mindfcuk" offers a fresh sense of confusion by making the art extremely accessible. Aquil Virani's perception-bending solo show marks a first for the Fridge Door Gallery.
TVMcGill (TVM). Stacey De Souza, "Mindfcuk."
Solo artist Aquil Virani teaches TVM the art of visual trickery in the very first solo art show ever at McGill.
McGill Tribune. Natalia Evdokimova, "Visual trickery in student vernissage."
"Each piece is a song with its own melody," muses Aquil Virani as he sits on his living room couch, explaining his philosophy on art... His collection teeters on the edge of reality and imagination, inspiring the senses and encouraging the viewer to actively discern one from the other. Although not a professionally trained artist, Virani exhibits his vibrant creativity and emerging talent in his solo show.
Leacock's Magazine. Garrett Cosgrave, "Mindfcuk."
One doesn't typically associate the high academia of a university like McGill with talented, driven artists. There are, however, those standout individuals who make the effort to follow their artistic ambitions despite their environment; Aquil Virani is one of them... He clearly has an unstoppable, appreciable passion for his art and the presence of artistry in everyone.
Montreal Gazette. Peggy Curan, "McGill students sing, dance and doodle in benefit Talent Drive"
They sing. They dance. They doodle. McGill students are pouring their heart and soul into a benefit concert and art extravaganza to raise money and awareness for HEMA-Quebec.