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Gilbert Eric Khan, born in New York and raised in South Jamaica Queens, New York, is an avid artist, fashion designer, appreciator of history, musician, lyricist, DJ, and leader at heart. A child of the new millennia, he has tackled our fashion and social media- based world, introducing business and marketing techniques, with an approach that appeals to everyone. At the age of six, he was experimenting with his father’s 2006 edition of Adobe’s Photoshop™️. He’s been experimenting ever since, with digital graphics, hand drawings, fashion pieces, and a plethora of art mediums. His business consists of hand painted custom jackets, customized sneakers, and each custom piece has its own story. Growing up in South Jamaica, one of the toughest neighborhoods in the United States, he recalls watching the superintendent for his apartment building, scrubbing blood off of the front steps to his home. Someone got stabbed to death the night before- and life went on. People kept working, babies kept crying, and Eric kept dreaming. Don’t you ever stop and dream about making dreams com true?

He often dreamed dreams in black and white because of such negative surroundings and unfortunate situations. He dreamed dreams of positivity and good things, where people would join together and stop tearing each other apart. This was the drive. This moved Eric to go and make those dreams a reality. In 2018, when he graduated earning grants and tens of thousands of dollars for his high school, in various funding and grants for his school. His various accomplishments in both music and art have not gone unrecognized. He was awarded the Louis Armstrong Music Award upon graduating, as well as the United States Marines Award for Outstanding Performance in the Arts. These accolades, he brought back to his home in Jamaica Queens, where the story continues.

In 2019 he participated in a street wide wall mural, still seen today, on 164th Street in Jamaica, leaving his mark and contribution to the art world, and to the people of his community- standing as a beacon of hope to those who see it. This wall mural project consisted of various street artists from New York and Eric worked with people from his own neighborhood. Simply put, if more and more people are involved in the arts and music world, we would live in a more drug-free and positive environment. What he once recalled seeing the wiping off of blood from his doorsteps, to seeing himself and other artists wipe up and put brand new paint on walls with a mural that shows transformation and spreads love to all those that admire its beauty. Upon completion of this mural, Eric was invited to speak about this project and painting at Carnegie Hall, which he did among avid art appreciators, sponsors for programs in the arts, and other art enthusiasts. It was his childhood dream to make it to Carnegie Hall one day, either for his musical skills or to be recognized for his art. Making dreams become a reality through the means of art and design, that’s exactly what Eric Khan has done for his community, leaving an impact and amassing a 23,000+ following on his inspiring art Instagram page. That’s what makes him different from the rest. The dreaming, the fulfilment of those dreams, and the non-stop grinding and hustling to make our world a better world. What he once dreamed in black and white, he made those dreams come true, in color, and has really put hope back in the lives of people in Jamaica Queens, New York. Within the next five years, Eric sees himself continuing to do what he loves, continuing to change lives, telling his story to all who will listen, with hopes that within the next five years, that there will be more and more children and people inspired who will dedicate their lives to make our world a better place. That’s the legacy he wishes to leave behind, to leave behind a literal mark of wet paint that is then carried-on and painted by the next generation of leaders and artists to come, with hopes that the dream and aspiration to be an inspiration never dies out.

-Gilbert Eric Khan

Email: gilbert.khan@nychscl.org

Website: https://art-by-eric.webnode.com

Instagram: @art_by_eric

www.instagram.com/art_by_eric

Twitter: artbyeric1

TikTok: art_by_eric

Chris Collins is an American multimedia journalist from Los Angelas, California

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