Sarah Khosla presents herself as a passionate and sagacious young artist whose work attempts to showcase society’s most critical issues. By invoking her personal experiences through her role as a student-activist, this San José State University art major is able to spark conversation about important topics through her graphic artwork.
The San José native describes her relationship with art as one she developed very early in her childhood. She claims to have picked up the interest from her father who had been a talented artist during his younger years in Canada.
Her creative fascinations quickly grew: “I remember when I was in elementary school, I would always be that one kid in the corner of the art table doing random things…amassing mediums that any school kid could pick up.”
By middle school she began to take her passions more seriously, taking art classes at a local studio. Eventually, she decided to enroll at SJSU for the diverse applications that are offered by the undergraduate program for art, hoping that she would find a career path that allows her to use her talents to support the causes she believes in.
Khosla prides herself as a student-activist, often participating in a variety of protests and campaigns that range from bringing awareness to climate change, to helping the homeless individuals of San José voice their concerns.
She is currently the president of SJSU’s Global Awakening Club, an organization that promotes student activism for environmental, social, and political issues. She also recently participated in SJSU’s rendition of Eve Ensler’s The Vagina Monologues, an entertaining production that celebrates womanhood, while raising awareness about the sexual and domestic violence against women that occurs around the world.
Khosla brings this same passion to her artwork. Her pieces published through Reed explicitly criticize the commercialized depiction of the oversexualized female body, an issue that she describes as being very important to her: “Our bodies, as women, can be degraded heavily nowadays. Many women bury their beauty under pounds of foundation, flashy dresses, or even fake hair. Little do they realize that their beauty is beneath the layers.” The title of one of her pieces—Belleza, which derives from the saying “Bellezza si trova all'interno,” or, “Beauty lies within”—really captures this message.
Khosla’s work mocks the rampant objectification of women that is so common in mainstream media, as a means to inform and galvanize viewers. She is able to channel her frustrations and personal pains through her work to create something that is both shrewd and jarring.
For Khosla, these artistic productions feel personal: “In a sense, those pieces that I created and The Vagina Monologues have not only helped me work through my own problems, they’ve given me insight into other people around me. I want them to know they’re not alone—they can be helped.”
What’s next for this young artist and activist? Well, Khosla says she is broadening her studies to include advertising so that she can use her talents to help the world around her: “I feel like there are a lot of issues going on in society that need to be heard and can be conveyed though art.”
In keeping with her humanitarian work, she is planning to serve as a volunteer in the Peace Corps after she graduates.