KOCHI: Walking into Durbar Hall Art Gallery, there is a general sense of peace in the midst of turmoil. Mounted on the walls, there hang spurts of inspiration, feelings of frustration and vivid expressions of colours. These are the paintings displayed by the members of Teach Art Kochi in the gallery from July 11 to 15.
Of the 149 members of the organisation, 100 have displayed their artworks. “Teach Art Kochi is an organisation comprising Malayali art teachers working in unaided schools. Most of them get a very meagre salary,” says coordinator R K Chandrababu, who is also the art teacher at Global Public School. “Their jobs are not secure. So these artworks are their way of expressing their frustrations with life. In simple words, these artworks are their feelings.”
In the exhibition, paintings, sculptures and craft works by art teachers have been displayed. A majority of the artworks were done at the three-day camp for art teachers and students held in April at Changampuzha Park. “There are other works that were done after the camp,” says Chandrababu. Other than this, the works done by schoolchildren have also been displayed at the gallery.
Work of students
Walking on the corridors on the top floor of the gallery, one would wonder, ‘Are these really the works done by kids?’ Though they are done by schoolchildren, the works displayed reflect a human being’s perspective of the outside world. “Most of the young artists are our students. Some of us had attended the art camp with them,” says Chandrababu.
Works of almost 50 young artists have been displayed. Thoughts on not-so-childish themes such as waste management, selfie culture and preserving nature have been pondered upon.
On the first day of the exhibition, awards were given to teachers who have performed in an outstanding way. Shajee Chalad of Scholars International School in Doha was given the C N Karunakaran Memorial Best Art Teacher Award.
“This is for the fifth year we have been giving this recognition,” says Chandrababu. For the first time since the organisation’s inception, Roopa Renjith of Viswajyothi CMI Public School was awarded the best craft teacher award.