Hastings & St. Leonards on-line community newspaper
Angels awaiting © Khadija Khan

Angels awaiting © Khadija Khan

If anyone can, Khadija Khan can!

A year ago was a terrible time for my friends Khadija and Brad. On his 45th birthday, Brad had a heart attack from which he never recovered… HOT’s Erica Smith shares with us a tale of re-creation and introduces Hastings’ newest artist, Khadija Khan.


Khadija Khan – self portrait with yellow flower and ‘Angels awaiting’ canvas in the foreground

Brad was a big name in Hastings – the Blast Science maestro and fabulous drummer in multiple bands. He dressed like a vintage British Gentleman and had the wit and snappy language of an Italian Jewish all-American boy. LOTS of people had the pleasure of Brad’s big heart and comradely patter, but I am also VERY privileged to know his beautiful, funny and talented wife, Khadija Khan.

Naturally, this has not been an easy year for her. To help her through, she’s taken up the “Be More Brad” mantra – see the badge below – and has picked herself up and brushed herself down. What none of us ever expected – including Khadija – is that she would transform into an amazing abstract painter.

00BeMoreBradKhadija has always liked craft projects and restoring vintage furniture (she shares Brad’s love of the ’40s and ’50s). A few months ago, as a distraction,  a friend took her on a painting course in Cork. That holiday opened up a whole new vista for Khadija.

In September, she decided to make one painting a week, and sell them at an event organised by Eggtooth Project – an inspirational organisation that works with young people. Brad had been an Eggtooth mentor, nurturing young musicians.

Khadija’s paintings are mature abstracts, which often include horizons. Not surprisingly, given her love of past times, there is a mid-twentieth-century flavour to the colours and brush strokes. As each canvas appeared as a weekly post on Facebook, they never ceased to surprise and amaze me. Sometimes words are not enough to express emotions, and these abstract paintings are visual poetry. Each one a gem.

This Sunday, 18 November, Khadija Khan is holding her first exhibition, at Dragon Bar in George Street, Hastings Old Town. Proceeds from the sale of the paintings will go towards supporting – “BeMore” – a foundation for young musicians set up in Brad’s memory by Eggtooth Project.

The exhibition will be open from 6–10pm. Come along, see some amazing paintings, meet a wonderful woman and support a fabulous foundation. Be More Brad! For more information, follow this link.

Next Saturday – 24 November, will see the launch of the Be More Foundation – a legacy project to commemorate Bradford C. Gross. It will run from 2.30–10.30pm at The Albion, George Street in Hastings Old Town. It will be a Festival of new and emerging bands, and music from some old friends of Brad. You can find out more about the Be More Brad Festival by following this link.

© Khadija Khan

20x20cm abstract with a hint of gold © Khadija Khan


Distant Lands © Khadija Khan


A Tear of Reflection © Khadija Khan


Beyond – oil and cold wax – © Khadija Khan

Posted 21:37 Friday, Nov 16, 2018 In: Arts News

Also in: Arts News

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