Evan Kessler Dot Com

The Home of the Brave

Happy Birthday Jasky!

Posted by evankessler on October 13, 2010

Jaskarn Raju would’ve turned 30 today. Or as he would have had  us believe 29 or 31. For someone who I felt knew me so well, I find it funny that I still can’t accurately pinpoint his age. When he passed away several years ago, we were all so surprised to find out just how young he was and just how little we knew about him.  It always seemed more imperative that he knew about us.

Tonight my friends and I got together to commemorate his remarkable life and its influence on us. While we recalled many moments of hilarity and warmth of which he was a main instigator, we also felt the absence apparent in his untimely loss. Personally, I’ll always think of him as one of the biggest champions of my artistic endeavors.

Jasky left his job to pursue his career in art and he always took pride in the abilities of his friends to create. When this blog was in its earliest and most crudely designed stage, I could always count on Jasky Raju to spout back even the most mundane of details that was shared within its digital confines. No matter how inconsequential my musings may have felt, Jasky made them feel like an important masterwork of the modern era. He had faith in his friends and had reverence for their talent. We may not have seen it in ourselves, but were given a great deal of inspiration in knowing that someone as gifted as he, took interest in whatever inspiration we could muster.

There’s a part of me that feels ashamed that my everyday does not live up to  his expectation. Having someone believe that you are capable of great things is no match for actually achieving those great things. As I consider my neglect for this site, I remember the appreciation that a great friend once had for it. While part of me feels the lackadaisical treatment of this formerly involved space is a tragic testament to the death of self-confidence and the need to flip the bird to anyone who thinks self-expression and humor is lost in the self-involvement of bloggery, I also feel there’s strength in numbers and that those who have been inspired to take to the digital masses in celebration of expression or self-deprecation are noble in their efforts to bring entertainment to those who would otherwise spend their time staring blankly into space not appreciating the existence of humor and/or humility.

So on the anniversary of this day of celebration, I would like to commemorate the value of expression and those that would champion it. For even though it may seem unwarranted to some, it might be construed as invaluable to others. And that’s where we left things off with Jasky, as an artist he appreciated things at their most honest and he valued those who were not at all hesitant to share. He certainly got much more out of us than we ever got out of him…or did he?

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2 Responses to “Happy Birthday Jasky!”

  1. Michelle Gilkes said

    I don’t know what to say. I purchased a wonderful painting from Jasky Raju that still sits on the wall and there isn’t one person who doesn’t comment on who absolutely wonderful it is. Its one of my pride and joys. I purchased it from a bar on the lower east side and he came and met me and we met two or three times to talk and hang out. I own property I was thinking of developing as an artist retreat in Belize and I wanted Jasky to come and paint a mural for me, he was interested in the project and quite willing to create something. Unfortunately I put it on hold and moved to Phnom Penh, Cambodia where I have lived for the past few years and you can imagine my surprise when I googled his name I came to find that he had deceased at such a young age when his artistic work held so much promise. We’ve lost someone who would have gone on in his creative process to be an important artist of our time…that is something I have and never had any doubt about. I’m looking at the painting now where to the right stands out the anagram STCTS (some things change things sometimes).

    I am so sorry I didn’t spend more time with him or purchased more of his work and took for granted that he was so young that there was ample time to have him come with me to Belize and create a grand mural for the artists retreat.

    Lesson is to take no one for granted. Never take time for granted. We need to soak up those who come in our midst and never mistakenly believe that they will always be around to produce their great work.

    Jasky was down to earth, he was open and accessible, he was curious and cared about others, their dreams and potentials.

    I watch this painting and mourn for him but more than anything it means more to me than when I first acquired the work and even then I loved it more than anything.

    I raise a glass to you Rasky Raju.

    Cheers mate

    You nor your work will ever be forgotten

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