There couldn’t have been a better name for this art exhibition. A Gurgaon-based NGO- Udaan is presenting artworks by 28 underprivileged kids called ‘Expressions.’
Truly expressing the fears, feelings, dreams and ambitions of these special kids, the exhibition is on at the Galaxy Hotel, Gurgaon till September 30.
These children belong to two NGO-run schools in Gurgaon - Saksham Bal Vikas Sanstha and Maharshi Dayanand Vaidik Mandir. Ranging from age 10-19 years, they were selected after a competition in their schools and subsequently trained by a panel of renowned artists including Piu Ghosh, Tanveer Alam, Pooja Kapoor and others.
These paintings are now on sale, priced between Rs. 5-10,000, and the proceeds will be given to these kids and their families.
President of Udaan and curator of this exhibition, Shikha Agarwal informs us, “Our NGO was formed only six months back by a group of concerned individuals including a few artists. It has always been our wish to provide for and encourage deprived kids.
They are the future of our country and as much entitled to a playful and educative childhood as any other child.”
“Therefore, we decided to tie-up with these schools, hold competitions and select kids who have a penchant for art. After training more than 100 kids over the last six months, we have finally put on display 28 artworks of as many children – all acrylic on canvas.
These colourful paintings say a lot – things which these kids would probably never be able to express otherwise.
A painting by a girl Aparajita shows her in the prestigious Shri Ram School – her dream school. In another, a girl has painted her dream room, complete with a large bed, a TV, computer and beautiful dressing table. She stays in a one-room house in a slum otherwise.
A young boy Dilip has shown concern for his parents, who wash clothes for a living, by painting their rough hands, while another Akash has expressed his yearning for freedom by painting kite-flying.
A boy, who sits in his father’s grocery shop, has painted his mother scolding him for wanting to go out to play while another has shown himself with several canvases and an audience applauding his work.
Nilima Sharma, director of Saksham Bal Vikas Sanstha, comments, “We are very happy that other than basic education, these kids are getting to enjoy the finer things of life like art and culture. It is difficult to convince their parents who feel that it is a waste of time, but when we see these kids happy, we know we are on the right path.”
“Udaan has also assured us that they are seeking affiliation from the art institute Pracheen Kala Kendra. If they succeed, these kids can study art further, get certificates from the Kendra and become artists themselves. Who knows, tomorrow they may become artists as big as those who trained them for this exhibition.”