For these docs, art, life imitate each other

For these docs, art, life imitate each other
What would happen if doctors replace scalpels with paintbrushes? Sameeksha Art, Research and Media has put together a group show titled ‘Drs@ART’ at the Venkatappa Art Gallery, featuring paintings and artworks by 24 doctors from the state and other parts of the country.

ENT consultant Dr Sreenivasa Murthy always wanted to try out painting because, as a surgeon, he was interested in anything that involved the use of his hands.

“My daughter wanted to join a class. When we found a teacher, out of curiosity, I asked if I could join too,” he said. For the past one-and-a-half years, he has been practising for at least 10 hours a week and attending classes in the weekend. Two of his acrylic paintings are on display at the exhibition. “I find that the hand movements required for painting are very similar to those in surgery. So painting came naturally to me,” he said.

While his profession makes Dr Murthy a better painter, it is the other way round for Dr Rudra Prasad, head of the paediatric orthopaedics department at the Indira Gandhi Institute of Child Health.

“When you paint, you have to observe the minute details, shades of colours and so on. This has improved my observation of patients and during surgeries,” Dr Prasad said.

He used to paint as a child, but it was only two years ago that he started taking formal classes. Dr Prasad likes to bring his professional interest in sports injuries, bones and joints into his paintings. He has painted scenes such as a surgery in progress, a baby born with defective limbs and he wants to make more of these.

Art helps Dr Mythri Shankar, a nuclear medicine physician, deal with the challenges of working closely with cancer patients.  “In my field, the emotional burden is huge because cancer is often terminal. Breaking the news to patients is a very difficult job. Art, in a way, is a stress-reliever for me and through it, I can convey powerful messages,” Dr Mythri said.

Her digital artwork at the exhibition titled ‘Smoke,’ depicts cancer spreading through a human’s lung. “It was important for me to get this message about lung cancer across because people close to me smoke. My other painting in the exhibition is also a message to my patients. It is titled ‘Hope’ and conveys something I cannot tell them in words.”

The show is on till Tuesday, from 11 am to 6 pm.

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