Middle and high school children compete and primary students display their work of art in the gallery

“Paintings have a life of their own derived from the painter’s soul”- Vincent Van Gogh.

Budding artists from all over the country, exhibited their high levels of creativity and technical painting skills at the national level drawing and painting competition- 2012 of the Association of Schools for the Indian School Certificate. The annual event was hosted for the second consecutive year by Lakshmi School in Madurai last week.

The students were divided into two categories – Junior (Class IX and X) and Senior Class XI and XII) There were nine junior teams and eight senior teams. In all, 34 students who won at the regional rounds formed 17 teams representing 24 schools in the final round.

“Monsoon and its best” and “Simple joys of childhood” were the topics given to juniors while seniors could choose from “Nature’s fury” and “Two sides of a coin” to show their flair with brushes and colours.

The paintings were later put on display in school’s art room. They were incredibly beautiful and impressive. The technical quality of each work reflected the talent of the students, who put wings to their imagination in a free flow of colours.

. They beautifully brought the three-dimensional world into a two-dimensional plane exhibiting their passion for the work. Their knowledge of materials, sketching skills, creative strokes, colour combinations, each was worthy of appreciation.

“These finalists are like the rising star artists of the country,” said S. Jawahar, Principal, Lakshmi School. “Each canvas is so beautiful. It makes every participant a winner”.

.“The art room looked amazing” said R.Srinivasan, Director, TVS group of schools. “The students exhibited their talents in a very short time. It is not an easy job”.

Jeyaraj, known for his versatility in illustrating magazines, story books, educational text books and posters, was the judge along with his wife Regina Jeyaraj. “Art in general is very interesting. Art is common to everybody without linguistic deviations. Art speaks for you,” he said during his brief address. “I have judged more than 350 art competitions and examined thousands of paintings. But the ones which I see here today by young students are unusual. Their versatility impresses me. It is exciting to see different varieties of paintings by students from all over India.”

Deciding the winners was no doubt tough for the judges. Finally, they were selected on the basis of best ideas and technical skills.

The beaming winners returned with gold, silver and bronze medals along with certificates and trophies for their respective schools.

The winners

Junior category: First – Jithi Mohapatra and Vandana Miry of St.Vincent Convent Higher secondary school, Orissa; Second - Sinny Mukherjee and Arka Prava Karmakar ,St.Xavier’s Institution, West Bengal; Third was shared by N.Vasudha, Mitra Academy, Karnataka and Harshitha Aheshadri of Carment High School, Karnataka.

Senior category: First Rashin Ranjan Singh of Dayanand Public School and Anukrithik of Sanajam Model School, Kerala; Second - Akshitha Sethi- St.Paul Mithal School, Ludhiana and Yadvender Singh Pawa, St.Joseph’s Boys School, Jalandhar; Third – Anushka Laha and Indrayata Sengupta, The Future Foundation School, West Bengal.

Promoting Creativity

In another first, over 100 paintings made by primary students of Lakshmi school were mounted at the Varnam Art Gallery during the weekend. . The art gallery for the first time put on display works of children to kindle creativity.

“Creativity in children is important,” said BabuBhaskaran, Lakshmi school art teacher. “The kids had the best time drawing and colouring them. They were given the freedom to choose their own theme, concept and colours. We encourage open thinking in our students. There should be no parents’ or teachers’ domination when a child starts painting. It has to be natural based on the child’s observation.”

“The confidence level of children will grow when they visit the gallery and see their paintings on display,” he added.

“Primary school children painted so well. I am surprised. Their ideas are very good and amazing” said one of the viewers in the art gallery.

Art cannot be taught, but imagination can be triggered by creating the right ambience for art to thrive.

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