Category Archives: News

Art Comes to Grant Road Station

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Grant Road Station, 10 am, October 2, Gandhi Jayanti. It’s unbelievable how much action there was. A little team from Akanksha painted away on a dirty, wet portion of the station as part of a larger initiative to make the railway stations of the city a little less dreary.

Before we knew it, a painter on his way to work dropped by to give us his suggestions, a father with his five year old decided to not go where he was going and joined us instead! The organisers were so excited that they became our team of painters.

It’s amazing how things happen even when they feel like they’re not happening.

Hats off to the little team of Akanksha alumni, headed by Suraj, who worked on this!

This is one of the two walls that the Akanksha team is painting.

Art for Akanksha murals are a great way to have a space transformed while painting with a group of little artists from Akanksha. We paint office spaces, bedrooms, schools – we just need a brief and a wall!! Get in touch with ruchika.gupta@akanksha.org

Visit our shop http://www.artforakanksha.org/shop-products/

Alumni Feature: “Art class taught me to believe in myself”

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“Hi. I am Naval. I am an Akanksha alumnus. Art class taught me to believe in myself and never give up in any situation. I started my journey here as a student and today I teach art to all my students. Whatever I’ve learned so far through art, I’d like to give back to all my kids.

The fish motif used to be a predominant feature in all my art work as a child. I’ve tried to bring it back in a new avatar. Hope you like it.”

 

Watch out for the ‘Art for Akanksha Retrospective Collection’ which brings back some of the art, products as well as students that go back almost 25 years and brings it back to the present.  It is about ideas, motifs and themes that keep the essence of its Akanksha creators but with a more modern feel.

Zoo Mania at Kalaghoda!

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The installation is the culmination of four animals – an elephant, butterfly, seahorse and a fish – creatures from water, land and air.

The installation shows the importance of every creature, be it as giant as an elephant or as small as a butterfly. Every creature’s role is very essential in the ecosystem and for its better functioning.

Created by:

8 to 12 year old students of
Mahalaxmi Mumbai Public School and 
Sitaram Mill Mumbai Public School –
MCGM schools run in partnership with The Akanksha Foundation 

 

Coming up: Reaching Beyond

If you love the installations and the hard work put in by our children and teachers, do send us your picture with our installation and a line on why you like it to art@akanksha.org. The best answers will win our art tiffin box filled with goodies. We’d love to feature you on our blog! 

Art Tiffin Box Give Away

ELEFISHISTIC: Installation at the Kalaghoda

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We chain them, abuse them, whip them, shoot them, eat them, shoo them, beat them, kick them. It’s a pity they don’t know to speak, if they did, our ears would have bled with the echo of their expletives.

Animals! These wonderful creatures deserve to be free, in their homeland, in the midst of lush green trees and idyllic mountains.

This model is a reminder of how these rock stars need to survive happily, just like you and me, and we need to help them find their perfect place rather than driving them towards extinction.

There are five animals that are merged together in the model, as if forming a whole, asking you take notice of their plight, their beauty and their struggles. All of them have decently long life spans, but do we really let them live that long….THINK!

Installation created by:

8 to 14 year old students of
Laxmi Nagar Mumbai Public School and
Shindewadi Mumbai Public School –
MCGM schools run in partnership with The Akanksha Foundation 

 

Coming up: ZOO MANIA!

If you love the installations and the hard work put in by our children and teachers, do send us your picture with our installation and a line on why you like it to art@akanksha.org. The best answers will win our art tiffin box filled with goodies. We’d love to feature you on our blog!  🙂

Art Tiffin Box Give Away

A Wonder Walk through the Bhau Daji Lad Museum

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By Ruchika Gupta

40 children from one of our schools looked enthralled as Shreemoyee from BDL told them all about the museum history – how it was Prince Albert’s personal collection that the museum housed and how it was named after Dr. Bhau Daji Lad for his efforts to raise money to create the museum.

We walked through shelves of artefacts – ivory carved artefacts, pottery, silver work, daggers and swords. There was as much that the adults learnt along with the children. The space itself held all of us in sheer wonder!

Did you know that the carpets there were made by prisoners, that what looked like tiling on the ground floor were actually pieces of stone that were 4 feet high and placed into the ground, or that the ceiling had real gold guilding and that one of the ships carrying the special tiles from England sank on-route.

It was amazing to watch the children who were fidgety and restless, lean forward and try to catch every part of the story and how they leaned over the glass case which had a 3D map of Mumbai – there is so much that we learn when we go out of the classroom, when we meet people who can answer our questions and who push the limits of our imagination.

To me, the highlight of the day was just this and the workshop on silverwork that followed and pushed the kids to put themselves into the shoes of artisans was just the icing on the cake! As a teacher, nothing can give you a bigger kick than to see students’ eye light up with a gleam when they connect with something or gasp with wonder! We look forward to many more workshops at the museum.

Ajrakh Printing at Abhyudaya Nagar School

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The Akanksha children have over the years learnt all about block printing but it’s completely different when you get an artist to teach you. We had Khatri Abdul Rauf, an Ajrakh printer from Gujarat conduct a workshop. The Akanksha schools were privileged to have Indian folk artists from around the country conduct workshops in our schools. As the first leg of a tie-up with Paramparik Karigar, we had 35 students in the Abhyudaya Nagar English Medium School between grades 6 and 8, hear the story of Ajrakh printing from an artisan who breathes the art day in and out. It’s been passed down generations of his family and today through the efforts of organisations like Paramparik Karigar, he gets to take his art into the cities and earn a living.

Ajrakh in Arabic refers to a moonless sky at midnight with the stars sparkling in the darkness. Literally, it could mean ‘keep it for today’ (aj – today, rakh – keep) – it is believed that the more one delays in starting the next process of printing, the more stunning the piece turned out!!

The most exciting part of the workshop for the children was them seeing that the dye that Abdul bhaiya used could be made at home from simple everyday ingredients! They were thrilled to have printed their own little piece of fabric and found the entire process fascinating.

Art for Akanksha + Ummeed = a 65 foot long mural!

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The Brief:

How do you get a group of people who meet once a year to get to know each other, create something special as a team that benefits organisations working with children, do it in 2 hours, push them out of their comfort zone and ensure that it’s an experience that will stay with them forever!?

Art for Akanksha’s response!

Just paint a mural with the Akanksha children. We can paint anything on any surface, any time, any place and with anyone who will paint with us!!

The Akanksha alumni painted a 65 foot long version of Eric Carle’s book ‘The hungry caterpillar’ in 2 hours with a group of Dartmouth alumni. The group of 15 people had not painted in years and certainly not on such a large surface. They meet every year but this was the first time they were meeting in such a unique manner. The mural was painted in the Ummeed office.  Ummeed’s mission is to help children with disabilities or at high risk for disabilities, reach their maximum potential and be included in society.

The experience was one that left everyone feeling good about what they did, felt that they had been pushed to try something new and it was amazing to watch the team and children at Ummeed react to their new wall.

Many thanks to Nandita and Raj who made this happen and for Vibha and her team at Ummeed for having complete faith in Art for Akanksha.

Art for Akanksha murals are a great way to have a space transformed while painting with a group of little artists from Akanksha. We paint office spaces, bedrooms, schools – we just need a brief and a wall!! Get in touch with ruchika.gupta@akanksha.org

 


 

 

 

 

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