TIRUCHY: His talent did not go unnoticed. The Prison department officials could spot his flair for painting which has now helped a lifer to get professional training on his passion following which he has so far painted around 25 works of art on various themes in a few months. These paintings have been displayed for sale in the prison bazaar.
The official price these paintings will fetch would be put in prisoner cash property and will reach his family. So far around six paintings have been sold.
S Senthil Kumar (38) of Kumbakonam, convicted for life imprisonment for a murder that took place in his village, has been lodged in the central prison in the fourth block for the past 14 years.
When he was drawing pictures on plain paper, his artistic skills were noticed by the prison officials and in a bid to make him a professional, the officials decided to give him training with arts teachers. “He excelled in it. Since he was traditionally into sculpture making, he learnt the art quickly. To fine-tune his skills, we gave him materials like oil paint, painting brush and cardboards in various sizes”, said Prison Superintendent D Palani.
With the materials provided to him, Senthil Kumar started to paint his imagination on board with oil paint. He created a space targeting woman, a tribal woman, woman riding on a horse watching towards a new dawn, theme on ‘save earth’. His creations also were made of gods and goddesses like Mariamman, Vinayagar, Saraswathi, Mother Mary and Lord Krishna.
After arming him with the professional touch, the prison department had put up these paintings at the prison bazaar for sale. The pictures made at 2X1 foot was priced at `500 while the 3X3.5 feet ones are priced at `1,500.
This apart, he had made portraits of gods in ‘Navathaniyam’ (with nine varieties of grains) which are sold for `3,000-`1500, based on the sizes. “So far, we have sold six portraits and the money we get would be deposited at Senthil Kumar’s account at Prisoners cash property which will be handed over to his family members”, said, C Suruleeswaran, a prison warder who was taking care of the sale.
Meanwhile, the prison department has arranged a special drawing class for 20 inmates whose main hobby is drawing.