Kids Dazzle at Chennai Expo With Acrylic Paints, Beautiful Strokes
Children from SIP Memorial Trust, dazzle with their paintings at ‘Outside The Lines’, an art expo by Maisha Studio.
Children from SIP Memorial Trust, dazzle with their paintings at ‘Outside The Lines’, an art expo by Maisha Studio.(Photo Courtesy: Maisha Studio)

Kids Dazzle at Chennai Expo With Acrylic Paints, Beautiful Strokes

Babu stretched his hand as far as he could but it would just not reach the end of the frame. This was frustrating. He lost it, and holding on to the brush tightly in his little hands, he walked all the way around the canvas. Babu nudged the other boy to give him some space to sit on the floor. He pulled the frame near him and stared at the canvas with absolute glee and drew the beautiful blue sky. And in just a few hours, his painting was sold at the auction! A broad timid smile appeared on four-and-half year old boy’s face.

Babu was one among the 47 children from SIP Memorial Trust, who presented their paintings at ‘Outside The Lines’, an art expo hosted by Maisha Studio at Lalit Kala Academy. The trust is home to destitute children and kids with HIV.

Aishwarya Manivannan, the founder of Maisha Studio, trained these children with the help of her students to make this art expo possible.

Manivannan had three clear agendas for collaborating with the Trust. One was to let students from privileged backgrounds work with children from different backgrounds. Two, to let students at her studio understand that you don’t need money when you can impart knowledge and bring colour into someone else’s life. Three, to create a more holistic environment. By helping the children out at the very beginning of their creative journeys, she wanted to help them understand their potential.

The proceeds from the exhibition will go to the trust.

The expo also boasts of very unique artwork like Frida Kahlo in a Wonder Woman armour and Michelangelo’s iconographic depiction of ‘The Creation of Adam’ with man replaced by Superman. And the artists are as young as high school children.

The expo is open till 3 July at Lalit Kala Academy, Chennai.

For many children, this was their first time painting, especially on a canvas.
For many children, this was their first time painting, especially on a canvas.
(Photo Courtesy: Maisha Studio)
‘My art paper is always thrown into the garbage, But for the first time it was put up on display in an exhibition with paintings of other talented artists. Feels so special,’ said a happy child.
‘My art paper is always thrown into the garbage, But for the first time it was put up on display in an exhibition with paintings of other talented artists. Feels so special,’ said a happy child.
(Photo Courtesy: Maisha Studio)
Poongothai, from the SIP trust, says, ‘Even the children were unaware how talented they are. They have skipping and jumping around the gallery.’
Poongothai, from the SIP trust, says, ‘Even the children were unaware how talented they are. They have skipping and jumping around the gallery.’
(Photo Courtesy: Maisha Studio)
‘Most of them have never painted... So the canvas, acrylic painting was initially intimidating but soon they realised their potential,’ says Aishwarya.
‘Most of them have never painted... So the canvas, acrylic painting was initially intimidating but soon they realised their potential,’ says Aishwarya.
(Photo Courtesy: Maisha Studio)
Poongothai, part of the SIP trust, says, ‘Many volunteers come everyday and conduct programs... they give us sheets and ask us to draw on them and mark I, II, II prize. But for the first time, all those papers are in an exhibition like this.’ 
Poongothai, part of the SIP trust, says, ‘Many volunteers come everyday and conduct programs... they give us sheets and ask us to draw on them and mark I, II, II prize. But for the first time, all those papers are in an exhibition like this.’ 
(Photo Courtesy: Maisha Studio)
‘Usually, when we work with children from a cosmopolitan background, there is a lot of unlearning that happens because we are all bogged down by pre-conceived notions. But that is not the case for these children,’ said Aishwarya.
‘Usually, when we work with children from a cosmopolitan background, there is a lot of unlearning that happens because we are all bogged down by pre-conceived notions. But that is not the case for these children,’ said Aishwarya.
(Photo Courtesy: Maisha Studio)
‘Pre-conceived notions act as hurdles for the art making process but these children are like fresh sponge who take up everything we throw at them and we can shape them better,’ says Aishwarya.
‘Pre-conceived notions act as hurdles for the art making process but these children are like fresh sponge who take up everything we throw at them and we can shape them better,’ says Aishwarya.
(Photo Courtesy: Maisha Studio)
The kids are ecstatic to know that their paintings have been sold on auctions.
The kids are ecstatic to know that their paintings have been sold on auctions.
(Photo Courtesy: Maisha Studio)
The children are glad that they could contribute in a small way back to the trust which has taken such good care of them.
The children are glad that they could contribute in a small way back to the trust which has taken such good care of them.
(Photo Courtesy: Maisha Studio)
This transfer of knowledge from trained students to children who are absolutely new to the industry is a welcome move to expand horizons and let the creative juices flow.
This transfer of knowledge from trained students to children who are absolutely new to the industry is a welcome move to expand horizons and let the creative juices flow.
(Photo Courtesy: Maisha Studio)

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