Natiya Krikheli, House of Panther artist
From an early age, House of Panther creator, Natiya Krikheli’s artistic journey has been intertwined with her love for self-expression and exploration. Throughout her childhood, following and influencing her to pursue a fashion degree, art has played a central role in her life, allowing for inner self reflection and leaving an indelible mark on her creative spirit. I had a chance to sit with Natiya Krikheli recently to ask her about artistic journey to Web3 artist, it was inspirational to hear her background, life experiences and hopes and dreams for the future of this collection. (full disclosure, I am part of the House of Panther team and also a huge admirer of Natiya’s)
When did you start creating art?
I have been drawing since the age of 5, when I was 8, my mom took me to my first painting class, and I remember it vividly, I was captivated. I loved how through art my subconscious could manifest, and many of the paintings I have done throughout the years feel like an incredible reflection of my inner self with lessons embedded in them. Often I start without knowing where the painting is taking me, but later I realize it is meant to show me something. As I continued my artistic journey, I also developed a strong interest in fashion and while studying at FIT (Fashion Institute of Technology) in college, I had the opportunity to learn graphic design, which further expanded my creative skills. Since then, fashion has had a significant influence on my artistic expression and exploring the intersection of art and fashion has allowed me to delve into new realms of creativity and discover unique perspectives in my work.
Despite my passion for art and fashion, I’ve always felt a reluctance to share my creations with the world, my art has always been more of a personal hobby and meditative practice, rather than something I actively pursued professionally, Now, with House of Panther, I am embracing this opportunity to share my art and step outside of my comfort zone and showcase my art to the world.
What initially drew you to the world of digital collectibles?
The initial push came from my cousin, who has always been into crypto and NFTs. She encouraged me for months to start my own digital collectible collection. Coincidentally, around the same time, someone approached me with the idea of partnering up to create NFTs, offering their marketing expertise and website setup. While that initial relationship did not work out, it felt like a sign from the universe, and I decided to take the plunge. Soon after, I met Sandra and Chucho from the NFT Boutique in Tulum and I knew they were the right partners to take this collection to market. Since then, the collection has evolved so much, the characters have changed and the story behind them has grown richer. The initial House of Panther collection was much different and just a fraction of what it has evolved to be, but as I continued and believed in myself, it has now grown into something much bigger, more creative and with meaning. That’s how I know I have found my calling in the web3 art world.
How would you describe your artistic style and the themes you explore in your work?
In exploring my artistic style, I find myself captivated by the vibrant interplay of colors. When I paint, I am particularly drawn to paint women and I realize these paintings serve as a reflection of my inner self. They unearth the feminine essence residing within me and often unveil hidden facets of my subconscious mind.
Fashion also holds a significant place in my artistic journey having studied at FIT, where I was able to combine art with my love of clothing, styling and fabrication. From captivating color palettes to textures that evoke a mix of emotions, the world of fashion fuels my artistic expression in countless ways. Also, living in the bustling city of New York, I am constantly inspired by the vibrant creativity of street fashion. House of Panther NFTThe bold and creative expressions of New Yorkers in their fashion choices offer countless ideas and inspiration that have infused their way both into my painting and digital art. After my studies at FIT, I spent some time designing high-end jewelry which also provided a big influence on my artistic expression. The intricate textures, interplay of light, and the sparkle of gemstones have brought new dimensions to my work.
More recently in designing the House of Panther collection, I was able to bring my love for the feline (I am a big animal lover in general) and my curiosity about the world of crypto into this new digital medium that fuses art with meaning and utility.
You can see all of those influences reflected in the House of Panther collection, the combination of vibrant colors, the bold street inspired fashion and the many different jewelry accessories and sparkly, fun bling the characters have. Moreover, it is so incredible to know that my art can have meaning and significantly improve the lives of jaguars and other animals in Mexico.
Overall, my artistic style embraces the vibrant use of colors, celebrates the feminine spirit, and draws inspiration from the ever-evolving world of fashion, street fashion, the allure of jewelry design, and my love for the planet and animals.
Can you share any significant experiences that have influenced your artistic journey?
Absolutely! My artistic journey began when I was quite young, and I was fortunate to have a family that encouraged artistic expression in many forms. My mother and father have always been my biggest fans and supported my artistic journey. I had started painting, but also was encouraged by my aunt and grandmother to learn how to sew and start making clothes. I remember having so much fun drawing clothing, creating matching pieces, and even designing underwear. It was a lighthearted start that eventually sparked my interest in fashion design. As I got older, around 12 or 13, I participated in talent shows and started delving into fashion creation more seriously. My aunt and grandmother played a significant role during that time, guiding me in pattern-making, sewing, and bringing my clothing designs to life. In high school, I became known as “the artist” and took art classes that focused on live drawing and understanding the anatomy of the human figure. It was during this period that my passion for art solidified, and I decided to pursue it further. Although there might not have been a specific “aha” moment, I always listened to my heart and followed my passions, which led me to where I am today. I am thankful to my family and especially my mother and father who always encouraged me to follow my heart and were always so joyful and proud of all that I do. I am very fortunate in that regard.
How have your influences shaped this NFT collection?
My influences have played a significant role in shaping this NFT collection. Colors have always been a vital part of my artistic style, and I have carried that love for vibrant palettes into the House of Panther artwork. Furthermore, my background in fashion design has influenced the fashion-forward and street fashion elements you can see in the layers. I believe that incorporating these styles adds a unique touch to my art. Additionally, as a Leo, I have a fondness for cats. This affinity translates into my choice of incorporating panthers (jaguars) as subjects in my artwork, symbolizing strength, beauty, and independence. I strive to create a fusion of colors, fashion, and animal symbolism that resonates with viewers and brings a sense of joy and connection.
What message or emotions do you hope to convey through the House of Panther?
The ultimate message I want the House of Panther collection to convey is that there can be a bright side to the future. It is about the coexistence of humanity and nature and that coming together is not a daunting task but rather a collective effort, that’s what NFTs can do. Web3 has the power to unite us, it enables us to connect around causes that we are passionate about and come together to make a difference for those causes. I want my art to evoke a sense of brightness, hope and lightness that resonates with individuals on a personal level.
When someone connects with the characters in my artwork, they may see the reflection of their humanity in the characters, the jaguars, and our increasing detachment from nature. Zen, rescued jaguar House of pantherThe story of HOP serves as a reminder that we are part of a single ecosystem, and without nurturing our connection with one another and the natural world, our very existence is at risk. The fact that we are actually saving jaguars in Mexico facilitates a deeper connection with these majestic creatures, enabling holders to make a positive impact and become part of Zen and Soul’s journey.
Ultimately, I want my art to serve as a means of communication, to serve as a prompt for individuals to ground themselves, tap into their own energy, and rediscover the innate connection we have with our environment. This energy, deeply intertwined with the energy of the Earth, reminds us of our responsibility to preserve and protect the natural world for future generations.
What are your goals and aspirations as an NFT artist, both personally and professionally?
As an NFT artist, my goals and aspirations are twofold: personal and professional. Natiya Krikheli, House of Panther artistProfessionally, I aim to establish a strong presence in the NFT space with House of Panther, and continue creating captivating art that resonates with web3 enthusiasts. I am looking forward to continuing and evolving the collection through future drops that explore new themes and concepts following the characters on their path to regeneration. We will be going to mint soon, so watch our twitter channel for upcoming announcements.
On a personal level, my goal is to deepen my understanding of the web3 space and its potential. I want to leverage my knowledge and experience to educate and empower others, particularly women artists, about the power and possibilities of web3. By sharing my own journey and success, I hope to inspire and encourage others to express themselves fearlessly through this innovative medium.
I also have a deep-rooted desire to make a positive impact. With the successful launch of this collection, I aim to raise awareness and support for the conservation of jaguars, a cause close to my heart. Through my art, I want to advocate for the protection of these magnificent creatures and contribute to their preservation in any way I can.