Bengaluru: The second leg of a National level art workshop (for canvas painting) cum art exhibition for persons with disabilities (persons with mental illness, autism spectrum disorder, intellectual disability, neurological disorders and multiple disabilities), which started from October 10, culminated today.
As many as 23 participants from across the country have participated in the workshop organised by the department of psychiatric social work, psychiatric rehabilitation services and department of mental health education at National Institute of Mental Health and Neuroscience (NIMHANS), in association with the department of empowerment of persons with disabilities and Union ministry of social justice and empowerment. Art experts from Chitrakala Praishad, Bengaluru, are guiding and training the participants for the same.
The first leg of the workshop was conducted in July 2022 at NIMHANS in which 25 persons with mental health and neurological disabilities participated.
The art works made during the first and second workshop will be displayed and sold during the art exhibition organised during the International Day of Persons with Disabilities, 2022.
“Disability need not be a barrier to dreams and achievement. When the right opportunities are provided, persons with disabilities can prove their mettle. This national level art workshop cum exhibition for persons with disabilities is a golden opportunity for persons with disabilities to showcase their abilities,” stated Sivakumar T, additional professor of psychiatric rehabilitation services.
The programme is supported and funded by the National Fund for persons with disability, department of empowerment of persons with disabilities (DEPD), government of India. Joint secretary of DEPD Rajesh Kumar Yadav and deputy secretary Mrityunjay Jha inaugurated the Workshop.
Yadav said, “We will support such initiatives by NIMHANS in the near future as well. I am pleased to see the happiness in the parents’ eyes. One of the mothers who I met said her child draws pictures when she gets angry.”
Aarti Jagannathan (additional professor of psychiatric social work) had earlier approached the ministry of social justice and empowerment for funding and supporting an art Workshop and art exhibition for persons with mental health and neurological disabilities. She said, “Through this workshop, persons with disability will not just be able to learn under the guidance of industry experts on how they can better their painting, but also have a chance to exhibit their paintings and see it getting sold – the proceeds of which will be accrued to back to them. Thus this workshop can be therapeutic and rehabilitative for Person with Disability.”
According to K S Meena, head of the department of mental health education, NIMHANS, Bengaluru, one of the co-organizers of this programme, “Art plays an important role in the mental wellbeing of an individual. All the more when it is related to persons with disabilities. It can help in rebuilding social connections and strengthen existing support in communities. It can also help to boost confidence and make one feel more engaged and resilient.”
Shanivaram Reddy, associate professor of psychiatric social work, NIMHANS, and one of the co-organizers of the event states that, “Art will give the chance to explore the inner desires to the outside world and it will give the chance to understand others in meaningful manner.”