Artist’s Profile : Meenakshi J.

During our Travels and exhibitions , people often asked for the profile of  Meenakshi, so here I am sharing my portfolio which includes my studio and community art works. Each image is a representation of different series of works done in recent few years. Some of them have been exhibited and some are sold.

 Rainbow : Studio work, 32x25 inches, acrylic on paper, 2010

Rainbow : Studio work, 32×25 inches, acrylic on paper, 2010

Rainbow was an attempt to capture the fragility, beauty and agility of fishes in ocean seen during my first visit to Tamil Nadu in 2009. It is simple criss-cross line drawn with nib and stick holder. The absence of outline gives a flowy feel to the fish.

Identity-I : Studio Work, 32x25 inches, Acrylic on paper, 2012

Identity-I : Studio Work, 32×25 inches, Acrylic on paper, 2012

When I began my journey as an artist, I heavily drew from my cultural heritage. Hence this technique used is drawn from Madhubani/ Mithila folk painting but the style is contemporary.

Identity II: Studio Work, 32x25 inches, acrylic on paper, 2013

Identity II: Studio Work, 32×25 inches, acrylic on paper, 2013

This particular face was drawn in over three months time spread over three years. Each grain on the face is like a brain tissue and hand drawn with the fines nib I possessed. This represents my struggle and victory over all difficulties between 2010-2013.

History-Geography I : Studio work, 16x11 inches, Acrylic on paper, 2014

History-Geography I : Studio work, 16×11 inches, Acrylic on paper, 2014

Simple line drawings, this set of work represents a stylised and imaginary vision of man vs woman as social individuals. For me the imagery of woman has always been much larger than that of man. Since they make the family and society function where men only act as bread-winners.  On a lighter note this can be seen as simple relation between Men & Earth where tourists and travellers are trying to reach to the most stunning and untouched spots of Prakriti.

History-Geography II : Studio Work, 16x11 inches, acrylic on paper, 2014

History-Geography II : Studio Work, 16×11 inches, acrylic on paper, 2014

Simple line drawings, this set of work represents a stylised and imaginary vision of man vs woman as social individuals. For me the imagery of woman has always been much larger than that of man. Since they make the family and society function where men only act as bread-winners.  On a lighter note this can be seen as simple relation between Men & Earth where tourists and travellers are trying to reach to the most stunning and untouched spots of Prakriti.

 

 WoMan: Studio Work, 60x36 inches, Oil on Canvas, 2014

WoMan: Studio Work, 60×36 inches, Oil on Canvas, 2014

This life size female represent women in our society where every relation tries to claim a share in their women.

 

DailyDoodle: Studio Work, 2015-16, mixed media on 16x11 inch paper.

DailyDoodle: Studio Work, 2015-16, mixed media on 16×11 inch paper.

DailyDoodle: Studio Work, 2015-16, mixed media on 16×11 inch (A3 size) paper. I draw one sketch after my meditation everyday. This series which now has 52 sketches, is a pictorial record of my  (creative) state of mind on that perticular day for nearly past two months.

 

Geography I : Studio Work, 36x24 inches, white cement on mounting paper, 2015

Geography I : Studio Work, 36×24 inches, white cement on mounting paper, 2015

Inspired from the geographical beauty of different regions of India we travelled to, this work is an ode to Prakriti: the feminine element of cosmos.

 

Geography II : Studio work, 36x24 inches, White cement on mounting board, 2015

Geography II : Studio work, 36×24 inches, White cement on mounting board, 2015

Inspired from the geographical beauty of different regions of India we travelled to, this work is an ode to Prakriti: the feminine element of cosmos.

 

 Abandoned: Found object painted and worked on_wood, wooden polish, acrylic liner, acrylic color, 18x10x8 inches, 2015

Abandoned: Found object painted and worked on wood,  18x10x8 inches, wooden polish, acrylic liner, acrylic color, 2015

This solid wooden statue intricately carved but carrying severe wounds  was found by an orphanage manager on Odisha ( Bay of Bengal) sea shore. From the sea-shore to his orphanage to my home, this abandoned statue completed its journey as an orphaned child/ creation.

 

Light : Studio Work, 36x36 inches, mixed media, 2015

Light : Studio Work, 36×36 inches, mixed media, 2015

The central work is acrylic liner on handmade paper and the halo is a used tribal broom coloured (by me) with acrylic paint.  The impact of natural light on the central piece creates the glow effect.

 Blooming Wisdom : Artologue Project-A traveling community art work, 15x10 feet wall, A police station in Nalanda, Bihar, 2015

Blooming Wisdom : Artologue Project-A traveling community art work, 15×10 feet wall, A police station in Nalanda, Bihar, 2015

In the year 2015, we were invited by the DSP of Nalanda police station in Bihar when we were on our Bihar-Jharkhand trip. We not just landed up at his home but also painted with the police personnel at their under construction Police station. Read the blog here or click  http://artologue.in/2015/04/07/gangs-of-rangpur-in-nalanda/

Sailing in Desert: Artologue Project- A traveling community art work, 10x15 feet wall, a village school in Rajasthan, 2014

Sailing in Desert: Artologue Project- A traveling community art work, 10×15 feet wall, a village school in Rajasthan, 2014

On our trip to Rajasthan in 2014, we were utterly surprised and delighted to know that all these kids of Indian desert knew how to make paper boats. Perhaps that is how they wait and remember their short-lived monsoon season. Thus we painted a huge sailing ship and stuck paper boats made by these government school students on it. read the blog here or click. http://artologue.in/2014/12/04/sea-of-colors-in-desert/

Majhi Than : God's home, Part of the Artologue where I painted a tribal shrine with the community, 8x8x8 feet mud hut, Organic pigments, A tribal village in Bihar, 2015

Majhi Than : God’s home, Part of the Artologue where I painted a tribal shrine with the community, 8x8x8 feet mud hut, Organic pigments, A tribal village in Bihar, 2015

In 2015, we had the privilege to live with different kinds of tribal communities: hilly, plain and forest dwellers as well. This tribal community welcomed us warmly and allowed us to paint with them their shrine. All the pigments were organic and prepared just before painting the mud structure. Read the blog here.

 Untitled : Artologue Canvas on which around 1600 people painted, 15x25 feet, acrylic on canvas, 2015

Untitled : Artologue Canvas on which around 1600 people painted, 15×25 feet, acrylic on canvas, 2015

This set of two 8×25 feet canvases was painted by over 1600 people in a month’s time who joined me at the ‘ Artologue: Art Walle log’ exhibition at India Habitat Centre, New Delhi 2015 . Read the blog here or click http://artologue.in/2015/11/01/30-days-50-ft-of-canvas-and-100-stories/

Lodarwa: Red Sun & Orange moon

“Who all are there in your family?”, Meenakshi asked just before entering the house of our host Sumer in Lodrawa, Jaisalmer.

“…..My parents, my two elder brothers, their wives and two nephews.”

“Ok”.

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We rode 20 kms away from Jaisalmer city to reach this village. For these 20 kms we experience desert in true sense; tiny shrubs, gigantic cactus bushes towering well over 15 feet, rocky ground, no human or structure to be seen as far as the horizon, pitch black road rising up and falling down like ocean waves.

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Sitting right in the middle of an ASI recognized archaeological site, the village was a kind of family settlement. Among 40-50 homes scattered over 5 kms of area where most of the families shared their common ancestry.

Some of the families were migrants from Pakistan. Children played with fossilised stones and meticulously carved stones were scattered all over. It was first of its kind stay for Artologue.

The day was shying into cool breezy Christmas evening. We were greeted by a yellow stone house with a central courtyard of mud.

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Initially there was no body to be seen; neither the father, nor the brothers or the children. We did not expect women to welcome us as we were into a very traditional Rajput Rajasthani family. Women stay in the inner sectors of house.

Realising our feelings our friend and host Sumer explained, “ the brothers are off to work, eldest bhabhi (sister-in-law) and children have gone to visit their maternal grand parents, and mother and younger bhabhi are in kitchen.”

Well that answered all…

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Sumer took us to the terrace. It was a flat terrace with no structure, open from all side and shaded by a young-adult banyan tree.

Sumer had the best Christmas gift for us. He pointed towards West and we went gaga over the huge scarlet red sun kind of stuck on a wind mill. And all possible camera’s started clicking.

Even before we both were done with the gigantic sun, Sumer pointed his finger to a distance and tried to show us a large army of camels heading in our direction. It was difficult to see in the dimming light. Besides that we had always seen camels larger than our size and expected to see just a few.

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Soon Jey ran down and got his telescope. What we saw was unbelievable.

It was a huge trail of camels numbering nearly 200. They looked like rows of ants that we were more familiar with.

“Do you want to drink she-camel’s milk?” Asked Sumer.

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Well we both looked at each other for some hint with nearly same reaction. Jey showed interest in seeing the camels more closely than in their milk. So we headed towards their resting place.

It was getting dark and we made our way through tiny thorny shrubs. As we approached towards them, we encountered a stench. Jey warned Meenakshi- “camels stink. You better be ready and do not complain.”

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Well it was the most memorable evening of our lives. The Christmas sun setting and the full moon rising. They looked like reflections of each other. The sky was purple and pink on one side and orange on other.

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We just could not stop clicking pictures of camels, sun, moon and ourselves trying to freeze the moment to cherish forever.

watch some more pictures from the Deserts.

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All pictures in this blog post are clicked by Sumer Singh Rathore

The Elephant and the Specs…


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Desert Safari was an idea fascinated us for many years. The invitation by a friend from Bhuj helped us in making the decision to take a trip from Delh to Bhuj via Rajasthan.

With our new 500 cc Bullet Kesaria, we started the journey in which first stop was Jhunjhunu where we painted in a govt school.

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Like any other govt school, students were sparse in number. Not only that, because of the december month, most of the schools were conducting exams etc.

But we were lucky, one of the schools in the harijan colony of Narsinghpura welcomed us. thanks to the gandhi fellows who were working with these schools in last few years.

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Khusi, one fellow who brought many kids from his village (where she was staying for a month as a community initiative) to the school where we were painting. Another fellow Agni motivated kids in his school to come to school on a cold sunday morning.

They were around 40 kids who wanted to paint and enjoy. The walls of the school had already many things written on it but the windows were painted fresh.

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Meenakshi had a look at the walls and meanwhile jey asked kids for their ideas.

As always we banned the ideas of tiranga , flowers, houses and village scenes. (so that kids can use their imagination) Kids had a difficult time thinking what to say but then one guy said……Elephant…..then another said…..Donkey… and then it followed….goat, mango, apple, peacock, birds, watch, heart…..table….cap…..Spectacle….WOW……this was the first time when someone gave the idea to paint specs.

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Meenakshi picked up two things Elephant and Specs but nobody knew that She will ask kids to use the windows in making these things. She had figured it out in her mind.

We made two groups of kids and explained them how to make the windows into specs and elephants without doing anything with the windows. They were surprised but felt happy.

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Meenakshi did the outline of the elephant and specs and kids started filling the colors and asking what designs to make.

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The small kids who couldn’t work on the walls started making their own paintings on papers…and other kids completed the big paintings on the wall.

Within few hours we managed to finish the walls..and believe me..it looked really stunning.

for the first time we used the window to make a wall art and it came out perfectly in the form of Elephant and Specs.

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The Colorful Toilets….

The group photo

A proposal to paint in tribal lands was like a dream call.

Jey instantly agreed to accompany me as his heart lies in the hills and homes of tribals of Jharkhand. Love for tribal land is common between us.

In fact the tribal life stories played a major role in bringing us together. For me it has always been a fantasy land and for him his home land.

Well in less than a week’s time, we were in Jey’s homeland, Jharkhand, chit-chatting with dusky faced women and playing with new born goats.

The work started

An NGO that had called me to paint, took us to a village called Jojobeda. A small unit among a large cluster of tolas (small settlements) in the outskirts of Jamshedpur; the steel city of India.

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The NGO people gave us a tour of the village. We were intrigued to find a common feature in nearly all homes: a freshly built small cement structure amidst black & red painted mud homes .

After a little enquiry we got to know that these freshly built structures were the set of toilet and bathrooms.

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Wow! This tribal village had recently embraced the idea of in-house toilets instead of open defecation.

All of a sudden I saw that familiar glitter in Jey’s eyes when they met mine. I instantly knew what was going on in his mind. Without saying a word, I consented on his idea with a bright smile.

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The next day we were painting the toilets in Jojobeda. Children, youngsters, women, men and elderly participated actively in decorating their toilets. We worked at a super fast speed. Just in a day’s time nearly twenty toilet sets were painted by the army of enthusiasts.

I knew it was an easy task for me to initiate them into painting as painting and decorating homes and walls is central to tribal life.

IMG_9828

While I was running around filling the colour bowls and throwing ideas, Jey was having photo shoots with newly born goats and tiny little naked children. He was feasting on not-so-ripe guavas and soaking himself in familiar sounds.

On the third day we went to paint in yet another village. This time it was a village that looked like a house of an extended family. I could not differentiate between one home to another.

Children looked alike, each house had dogs, chickens, goats and some had a few bovines. All smiled and giggled seeing a lady in turban and noticed Jey’s bright coloured spects.

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On insistence I started painting a peacock and soon I had a large group working on my side drawing more birds and animals.

I noticed a very steady hand drawing confident strokes on the edge of the wall. Next moment I knew he was a ladyboy; dressed in tight girl top and knee length trouser Kailash stood out in the crowd. I went to him and said- ‘You draw very well. What do you do?’ He replied with a radiant smile that he is a dancer.

I asked- You like dance?
No! I like painting.
It didn’t feel like a stranger’s place any more.

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This was a simple world of simple people with simple life style and thinking. They loved their gay Kailash just as much as they loved us or other children of the village.

The elderly women were very proud of Kailash’s drawings and dance when I asked them who liked to paint. As a token of our thank and love, we left a couple of brushes with him.
We have their smiles, giggles and colours etched in our hearts.

30 days..50 ft of canvas and 100 stories…

October is a good month…actually a great month, we have heard always in the poems, stories, in talks by people but this year it proved to be really great for Artologue.

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Artolouge had its first exhibition in India Habitat Centre for a month exhibiting the murals, objects and painted with more than 1500 people.

we have stories which we can recite for next one year. in a glimpse we get hugs from stranger, emotional outbursts from older people and kids, mushy chat with many of them and tears from few.

Mee and Jey

we got numerous invitations to paint and hopefully forged new relationships in 30 days by inviting people to pour their emotions on the canvas with colours.

We will tell the stories later, but here we are sharing the media coverage we had in last one month.

Mee and JeyThe coverage started with The Hindu who featured Hari bhari (our beloved 350 Royal Enfield).

read it here- The Hindu story

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Then Yourstory.com interviewed us  and focussed on Meenakshi and Jey.

http://hindi.yourstory.com/read/1d5614edfc/the-art-of-the-big-houses-of-the-poor-from-jamb-meetings-bring-pioneered-a

and Then DNA newspaper came with a story and a video.

Meenakshi painting with a kid

and Then the Unthinkable happened. SCOOP WHOOP featured us and special thanks to the guy who wrote it.

one from prune

and here is the hindi version of Scoopwhoop….the GAZABPOST piece by none other than Vishnu Narayan.

and How Can we forget Deccan Herald’s beautiful piece by Shweta Sharma

another from prune

and last but not the least…..INDIAN EXPRESS featured us. Though we wanted a better coverage but we got three columns and we recited our Travel MANTRA after seeing the express piece….DO NOT EXPECT…..have a look.

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and the last one was in Dainik Bhaskar..dont know how they picked up the story because no one talked to us before doing this story.

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The tears….emotions….and the exhibit…

4India Habitat Centre gives an open space where we have displayed the digital prints of murals we have done and objects collected from various homes.
8In last 20 days more than 500 people have painted on this canvas making whatever they wanted to make. 25 ft canvas have been painted fully and we had to buy a new one.

1The little lady in blue told us that she practiced what she is going to make on the canvas. she made two butterflies and stayed for more than seven hours in the show.11Evenings and weekends were almost full with audience. everyone wanted to touch the colors.10Long shot of the first canvas which got painted in just 12 days. we were really surprised.
6Some one tried the Van Gogh style…….2These two ladies took few hours to paint then decided to make hand prints.

9This particular design by meenakshi J. who decided to put her signature on it without signing the work.3The second canvas is a kind of work in progress…

Our exhibition will remain in the habitat for next few days. we are ending on 31st december.

On 25 and 26 we are also doing a performance where people will donate objects to us and tell the memory behind that object. these objects will be later worked by Meenakshi and become part of our next exhibition..

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And Yes..on 26th Dr. Samit Mallick will be performing Dhrupad gayan where everyone can come. There is no ticket for it.

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and on 27th Chandan Tiwari will sing Bhojpuri folk songs. so please come in all the events and enjoy.

Art Walle लोग

Amidst anxieties, last minute confusions, surprising changes in plan and chaos, the exhibition ART Walle LoG finally opened for public to view and participate.

Art Walle लोग

This exhibition brings together our experience of painting 45 murals with families, schools and communities in 17 states over nearly 3 years at one place. Thanks to Dr. Alka Pande who offered us the OPEN SPACE at India Habitat Centre as the venue for our project ARTOLOGUE, keeping the participatory and open nature of project in mind.

Art Walle लोग

On 1st October, the show was officially opened with first colour strokes on canvas by spinal injury survivors. They also became the main attraction when they exhibited their wheelchair stunts.

Art Walle लोग

It was a memorable opening as much for us as much for them. Special thanks to Artist Vikram Nayak , B Ajay Sharma and lovely friend Ritesh R Sharma. Vikram helped everyone in painting and Ajay was our unofficial artist-photographer.

Art Walle लोग

We were surprised with Ritesh coming to the exhibition as he is very choosy and moody but he not only came but wrote a nice piece about the exhibit.

Read what Ritesh wrote about the Exhibit here.

A new thing for Jey Family and on much vast scale than we had ever imagined, the exhibition announcement and preparation received warm response.

Art Walle लोग

Never had we guessed that a project like this will make so many heads turn. Within less than a week’s time, people asking us for a hug and requesting us to visit their work-place to paint has become a common issue. The response of visitors are overwhelming and indeed we are overwhelmed with their requests to visit their work-place.

Art Walle लोग

Curious, teary, shining and thoughtful eyes are common sight. As an artist, it is enriching to observe people observing our works. We loved the reception of our visitors. Undoubtedly Hari-Bhari is the rock-star of Art Walle Log exhibition among all age groups and categories of visitors.

Art Walle लोग

Not only Hari-Bhari but the antique camera gifted to us by Girindra Jha was a huge attraction for many. In fact an artist friend B Ajay Sharma suggested to take the camera home every night otherwise someone will steal it.

Art Walle लोग

Other than the objects…..people loved the idea of painting on a blank canvas. In last three days more than 100 people have painted something or the other and hopefully felt good about it.

for more regular updates please follow us on Facebook. www.facebook.com/artologue art for all

We are filled with newer energy to undertake more colourful and longer journeys in near future.

Art Walle लोग

Come Be an Artist

Today, we want to make a big announcement about artologue.

No we are not going on a World Tour……(though we would love to if someone sponsors us)

So whats the good news…..it is about an exhibition.

Yes Artologue is exhibiting for the first time. In Delhi we have got an open space in INDIA HABITAT CENTRE to exhibit what we have been doing in last few years.

The exhibition has been named as ART WALLE LOG which will be there for a month from 1st Oct to 31st Oct 2015.

The exhibition has been named as ART WALLE लोग

The exhibition has been named as ART WALLE लोग

And wait. dont stop reading.

It will not be only a show of photographs of murals we have been doing with people. It will be much more than that.

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We have collected mundane objects from the families we stayed with and now we have given them an artistic shape with the twist of the history of that object.

Details exhibition

Sounds Interesting??? then please come and see what we did with a broken krishna idol we got in an orphanage, a cap of a Policemen, with the empty color bottles, tribal broom….and so on…..

 

and thats not it….you will have the chance to contribute into that. bring objects to the exhibition and tell us its story. it will become part of our next show.

There will also be a chance for people to become part of the exhibition. yes you read it right. you will be part of the exhibit if you come and paint with us.

Ask us how….There will be an empty canvas and colors in the exhibition for the visitors to paint on it. Yes….you will paint on the empty canvas and later Meenakshi J. will fine-tune, improve and give a shape to be exhibited on the huge walls of India Habitat Centre.

We don’t know if that kind of experiment has been done anywhere in the world. If you know please tell us more about it.

And One more thing…

we also have two musical performances on 26th and 27th October. A classical Dhrupad singer Dr Samit Mallick will perform on 26th evening and on 27th Chandan Tiwari will sing Bhojpuri folk songs.

So you have a choice. if you like classical music….come on 26th and if you like folk…semi-classical…come on 27th October. Though we will be there on both the evenings.

See you then in October. The opening is on 1st October around 5 PM. The exhibition will be opened by the spinal injury survivors with the strokes of colors on the empty canvas.

The Exhibition has been supported by Petronet LNG and

Petronet LNG is supporting the exhibition Art walle लोग

Petronet LNG is supporting the exhibition Art walle लोग

RAZA FOUNDATION

Raza foundation is supporting the exhibition Art walle लोग

Raza foundation is supporting the exhibition Art walle लोग

 

 

The tale of half a heart

Banaras

एक शहर था..जिसमें दो डॉक्टर रहते थे……..पता नहीं कैसे दोनों में प्रेम हुआ….शायद दोनों के दोस्तों ने एक दूसरे को मिलाया…फिर मां बाप मिले और प्रेम हो गया….लड़का सांवला…सलोना सा

लड़की गोरी चिट्टी …..जैसी फिल्मों में होती है..

प्रेम कुछ महीने चला…गंगा के घाट पर, रेस्तरां में….आपरेशन थिएटर में….फिर शादी हो गई….
फिर पता नहीं क्या हुआ…..लड़की बार बार बेहोश हो जाती…लडके को चिंता हुई…जांच हुई.

डॉक्टर थे ही दोनों..पता चला लड़की को बीमारी है.. Pulmonary hypertension…

आम भाषा में कहें तो ये दिल की बीमारी होती है जिसमें दिल आधा काम करता है. जी हां ऐसी भी बीमारी होती है जिसमें दिल बस आधा काम करता है. मतलब कभी कभी दिल धड़कना रुक भी सकता है.

Banaras

लोगों ने लड़की से कहा- शादी के बाद चिंता करने लगी है. टेंशन हो रहा है…सगे लोगों ने कहा…परेशान मत हो..लड़के ने माथा पकड़ लिया….बीमारी टेंशन की नहीं थी…

ये वो रेयर बीमारी थी जो लाखों में कुछ को होती है जिसमें दिल आधा काम करता है जिसमें रक्त शरीर में नहीं जाता…..लड़के ने माथा पीट लिया लोगों की बात सुनकर लेकिन प्रेम करना नहीं छोड़ा..इलाज चलता रहा.

इसी बीच लड़की गर्भवती हुई…डॉक्टरों ने कहा तुम मरना चाहती हो. लेकिन….बेटा पैदा हुआ छठे ही महीने में….बिना भौंहों का. बिना पलकों का. बिना होठों का..

Banaras

बच्चा आईसीयू में. मां भी आईसीयू में….दोनों बच गए……बचे रहे..लेकिन मां की हालत खराब होती चली गई….

वो बार बार बेहोश होती रही..बच्चा बड़ा होता रहा लेकिन मां बाप बच्चे पर ध्यान नहीं दे पाए..बच्चा साल भर का हो गया तो दिन रात टीवी देखने लगा…..फिर वही हुआ जो होना था…बच्चे को दुनिया से तालमेल करने में दिक्कत होने लगी.

Banaras

डॉक्टरों ने बताया…बच्चे को ऑटिज्म हो सकता है बार्डरलाइन केस है…मां बाप ध्यान नहीं देते हैं……..मां ने बच्चे को उठाया और बोली..मेरा बच्चा है मेरी गलती है….वो दिन है और आज का दिन है ..

बच्चा अपने मां बाप से मुंह चूम चूमकर प्यार करता है..

छह महीने पहले बच्चे के बारे में डॉक्टरों ने बताया हाइपर एक्टिव है…वो भी एक बीमारी है…अब बच्चे की ट्रेनिंग होती है ताकि दिमाग स्थिर हो…चार साल का बच्चा गाड़ी का हर ब्रांड पहचान लेता है….नासा के वीडियो देखता है और एस्ट्रोनॉट बनना चाहता है…….

Banaras

मां बच्चे को देखकर जीती है….उखड़ी सांसो में …सो नहीं पाती सीधी..तकिया लगाकर सोती है…वजन घटता जाता है वो जीती जाती है….फिर भी वो खुश रहते हैं..

डॉक्टर साब पॉजीटिव रहते हैं. कहते हैं…मैं पॉजीटिव लोगों से मिलता हूं अच्छा लगता है. भगवान को नहीं मानता…….प्रेम को मानता हूं…देखता हूं आगे क्या होता है.

Banaras

फिल्मी लगी न कहानी…ये कहानी फिल्मी नहीं है..हम इस परिवार के साथ दो दिन रहे……पेंटिंग नहीं कर पाए…सोचते रहे…..हम सभी को अपना दुख ही बड़ा लगता है हमेशा जबकि….

Banaras

( इस दंपत्ति का नाम नहीं बताएंगे..जो जानते हैं वो भी न बताएं…..हम उनका नाम लिखकर उनके संघर्ष और प्रेम को छोटा नहीं करना चाहते)

Art on flying chairs…

The final painting

The final painting

They were on wheel chairs but they had wings to fly. We had colors and we were ready to fly with them.

We flew with colors and wheels for the whole day. on our journey butterflies came with us and we spread colors on the walls of the home they live.

They were a bunch of guys physically bound to chairs but mentally they were on the sky with undying spirits.

The beginning

The beginning

The first interaction happened on facebook with purushottam who told us about the rugby players on wheels. Their caretaker Guddu wanted us to come and do some creative stuff with them.

The day was hot but still we reached the house in GK1 . Guddu came on a skateboard to receive us. with a blutooth on his ears and constantly managing things on phone, Guddu was more than welcoming.

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We started talking to goldy and others about their injury and about their basketball adventures. We decided to make butterflies in a way that all can paint them.

We started our work and then arrived the captain of the wheelchair rugby team, Nikhil. A thorough gentleman in the way he carries himself.

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Despite being on a wheel chair with spinal injury, he is a successful professional who works as a computer professional. Nikhil got injured in a silly jump in the swimming pool and injured his spine.

slowly Guddu, Nikhil, goldy, Ishan and  others joined us in painting.  In the beginning they were a bit reluctant as they thought they can’t paint.

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The injury in spine makes the hand movements very very hard, we got to know for the first time, but they were excited and involved in the process and had lot of fun.

Slowly everyone was painting and explaining the day to day struggles of a wheelchair bound person and the joys of a group on wheelchairs.  You may be wondering what can be joy so let me point them out the difficulties, happiness and achievements.

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  1. This bunch of young guys have played international wheelchair rugby in Korea
  2. They are arranging camps in various parts of India to make a national wheeelchair rugby team which can participate in para Olympics.
  3. Nikhil is a software engineer, Ishan has joined a multinational company recently.

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Difficulties

  1. They don’t sweat so they have to spray water on their face and wipe it otherwise it makes them uneasy.
  2. Going to toilet and passing the urine takes a hell lot of time.
  3. They have to train hard for their hand movements.

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Happiness

  1. As they say- when they move in a group, people feel that they are acting because they move their chairs themselves which people don’t accept.
  2. They do small stunts with their wheel chairs which normal people couldn’t think of.
  3. They have amazing mental strength and have the capacity to fight with the odds.

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for us working with this bunch was a lifetime experience. They told their individual stories which will take one blog each to write. we laughed with them, ate with them, painted with them.

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we cried in our hearts learning the fact that even holding a spoon in your hands can be challenging, things which we took for granted.

It is difficult to write about the experience. It can only be felt. we heartily thank Guddu, purushottam, Nikhil and others who invited us to spend time with them.

The best compliment we got was from Nikhil, ‘People come here to meet us and talk to us. You guys came and worked with us….and gave us a unique experience. it was a lovely time we spend with you.’

The final painting

The final painting