Saturday, February 14, 2015

A Special Valentine's Day at the Crafts Museum

I strolled for a second time into the open yard inside the Crafts Museum along with my friend Prema Viswanathan. Young people, boys and girls, swarmed the place. Many of them were busy painting. We asked one of them whether it was a painting competition. She said that it was an event bringing together a person who cannot hear or speak along with a person who can hear and speak, and the painting is being done by the pair. They are students from the Delhi College of Arts and Commerce.
The paintings that were being done were vibrant with colours even as those painting them were communicating with each other in the sign language. There was a buzz in the place.
Then we meet Smriti, who runs Atulya Kala and who has organised the event. She says that she has been working with the deaf and dumb ever since she was 16. She is now an anchor and she continues with her social work. She wanted to do something different for the Valentine's Day and she thought that it would be nice if she could organise a painting event involving students of art. She went to the Delhi College of Arts and Commerce and sought the principal's permission to organise the event at the college premises. The principal had turned it down. Then she came to the director of the Crafts Museum, who readily agreed.

There was not much of a crowd except those visiting the museum and the young boys and girls were absorbed in doing their paintings. In a quiet corner of Delhi -- inside the museum with its open yard and its exhibits, the place is quiet in a poetic sense.

The smiling face of Smriti says it all as she agrees to be photographed without a fuss.
I would not have walked into the Crafts Museum but for the fact that Prema was in town and she wanted to go to lunch at Lota in the Crafts Museum.

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