Newsletter 2018

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ISSUE: #3

Newsletter

2018

CHANGING LIVES THROUGH ART

Engaging in creative pursuits allows people to explore their identities,

form new relationships, cultivate competence, and reflect critically on

the world. In turn, the new knowledge, self-insight, and relationships

serve as sources of strength and resilience.


FROM THE DIRECTOR'S TABLE

A year and a half since The Art Outreach

Society (TAOS) was founded, supported by a

team of dedicated volunteers of all ages, I

am reassured of the powerful role that the arts

can play to enhance human life- the

presence of life to a larger, all powerful

energy, which is the centre for creation,

through imagination. If God is at the centre of

this energy source (and not portrayed as a

source for fearful thinking), then the seed of

creation would be through the accentuation

of visual and imaginative power. The human

brain and the human mind - both are linked

to power of this energy source that fuels the

imaginative process. Imagination which

moves life forward, an accelerator for the

thrust of life. It supports Einstein’s Theory of

Relativity; towards accentuated growth. Thus,

imagination and creativity are linked in the

process of visual and material creation, to the

propagation of life itself. When stunted

without being fuelled, the human mind dims

in existence. It shrivels up and shrinks to a state

of lethargic and stagnant existence. The

need for an enthusiastic and exciting purpose

is thus drawn from seeds of poor positive

conduits that bear weak fruit. Violence and

guile are such results, leaving the human mind

weakened and parched of the spirit of

existence.

With the recent understanding of the power

of art- and it’s urgent need in education -

research is now turning to delve deeper into

the nuances of the human brain. The ignition

of imagination that propels imaginative and

innovative thinking mandatory for successful

lives, both academically and professionally.

When TAOS was started, the challenge to

approach and convince educators was a

task not easy. Yet, after months of conviction

and hard work, we see results - some that are

visibly significant and some, intangible but

emotionally understandable.

As educators, parents and citizens of society,

the power of the arts to change lives must be

recognised . That through a creative process,

the human brain and mind are being fed with

ingredients that allow its positive thriving.

Neglected and left unattended to, the

Tanya Abraham

Founder/Director, TAOS

human being is, however, most connected to

the creative. Colours, drama, music- they

have the power to envelope the human spirit

in a soothing and supplicating energy. It is not

an addition but that which is the seed for

experimentation, growth, and creation. By

supporting the arts and art education, we

change lives. We reach out to the human

spirit in harmony.And link to a higher power.


STREET HERŒS OF INDIA (SOI)

CONFERENCE IN SPAIN

On 13 December 2017, at the Official College

of Psychologists (COPC) in Barcelona (Spain),

SOI conducted a conference led by Dr Olga

Martin, Clinical Psychologist and Human

Resources specialist, with extensive

experience in psychological evaluation,

diagnosis, therapy and intervention in Spain,

Germany and India, and Founder of

Street-heroes Of India (SOI). Discussed topics

were the importance of prevention and

psychosocial intervention for the

establishment of emotional integrity of

children and youth who have suffered

extensive trauma from abuse and

exploitation.

SOI is a non-profit association of professionals

that provides psychosocial training,

counseling and support for the emotional,

psychological and social rehabilitation of

children and youth at risk in India. It is

supported by The Psychological Society and is

a network of psychologists, therapists (-art,

-music, -dance, -drama), counselors and

coaches providing training on necessary

expressive therapy and psychosocial tools.

Artist, Art therapist and teacher Edmundo dos

Santos threw light on aesthetic and art therapy

practices with victims of child abandonment and

sexual abuse.

He’s also the Co-Director of the postgraduate

program Expressive Arts of the Faculty of

Psychology (ISPA-Lisbon); Supervisor-Therapist of

the Master in Transdisciplinary Art Therapy and

Human Development (IATBA). Alicia Blázquez,

Doctor in Psychology and Dance Movement

Therapist (DMT) talked about ‘Transcend the

Wound. The trauma as a meeting place’.


ART, A PLATFORM FOR QUEER LIVES

- SHANA SUSAN NINAN

Five queer youth who came forward to paint

their hearts. They painted their hearts on the

canvas – themes close to them and their lives.

Titled Homomorphism, the exhibition was held

about a year ago at Durbar Hall Art Gallery,

and the second edition is coming up in a few

months’ time.

Curated and exhibited from a gay

perspective, Homomorphism took the

limelight away from heterosexual affection

and intimacy. "Homomorphism was a

creative attempt to depict how certain forms

of intimacy can’t find space, while all seek

being oneself notion. The art exhibition was a

way for gay people to express their desire and

love which are not considered worth to be

carried and presented in daily lives among

heteronormative enclaves," says Dr Jijo

Kuriakose, research analyst, artist and founder

member of Queerala. Besides Dr Kuriakose,

other artists were V.K. Revathy, Anish, Nishad

and Mohammad Zuhrabi.

Queerala is an organisation that advocates

the rights of the LGBT and is actively involved

in the Queer movement of the country. They

have spear-headed many a political and

social discourse across India and have been

represented abroad.

So how was it for the only woman on the

team of artists? “In the lead up to the day of

the exhibition, I was angsty,” says Revathy, a

journalist. “I was half in the closet, half-out.

Besides the usual 'Will people like it' line of

thought, I had multiple thoughts flitting

through my head. All of this faded out fairly

quickly though. I met many of my friends, I

heard a lot of feedback and it felt like a

beautiful start. Now I'm looking forward to see

the work of more female queer artists from

Kerala.”

As Revathy rightly points out, homosexuality is

still in hush-hush conversations in Kerala. It is

very vital to create positive awareness and

what better platform than art! Art helps us

express the innermost feelings, and for a large

community whose voice have been sunned

many times, it’s definitely the best available

tool of resistance as well.

About the upcoming exhibition, Dr Jijo

Kuriakose says, “As a continuation of which

we are about to realise, Metamorphism will

be another edition of self portrayals and

desires. Metamorphism is scheduled for July

this year, and shall be a response/resistance

to the law and homophobic Kerala society.”


SPIRIT OF CREATIVITY

A year and a half since The Art Outreach

Society (TAOS) was founded, supported by a

team of dedicated volunteers of all ages, I

am reassured of the powerful role that the arts

can play to enhance human life- the

presence of life connected to a larger, all

powerful energy, which is the centre of

creation, through imagination. If God is at the

centre of this energy source (and not

portrayed as a source for fearful thinking),

then the seed of creation would be through

the accentuation of visual and imaginative

power. The human brain and the human

mind - both are linked to the presence of this

energy source that fuels the imaginative

process-Imagination, which moves life

forward, an accelerator for the thrust of

life.Thus, imagination and creativity are linked

in the process of visual and material creation,

to the propagation of life itself. When stunted

without being fuelled, the human mind dims

in existence. It shrivels up and shrinks to a state

of lethargic and stagnant being. The need for

an enthusiastic and exciting purpose

is,thus,drawn from seeds of poor positive

conduits that bear weak fruit. Violence and

guile are such results, leaving the human mind

weakened and parched of the source spirit.

With the recent understanding of the power

of art,and it’s urgent need in education,

research is now turning to delve deeper into

the nuances of the human brain. And the

ignition of imagination that propels

imaginative and innovative thinking

mandatory for successful lives, both

academically and professionally. When TAOS

was started, the challenge to approach and

convince educators was a task not easy. Yet,

after hard work, we see results, some that are

visible and some, intangible but emotionally

understandable.

As educators, parents and citizens of society,

the power of the arts to change lives must be

recognised . That through a creative process,

the human brain and mind are being fed with

ingredients that allow its positive thriving.

Neglected and left unattended to, it’s time

that it’s understood that the human being is

most connected to the creative. Colours,

drama, music - they have the power to

envelope the human spirit in a soothing and

supplicating energy. Arts is not an addition,

an added positive to everyday life, but that

which is the seed for experimentation,

growth, and creation.

By supporting the arts and art education, we

change lives. We reach out to the human

spirit in harmony.And bring purposes to

fruition.


TAOS TAKES CREATIVITY TO

KAKANAD DISTRICT PRISON

In a moving and satisfying workshop, three

TAOS volunteers visited Borstal School,

Kakanad District Jail for a women on the 25th

of March 2018. The fourteen participants of

various age groups and belonging to

different parts of India, for the first time,

engaged in a creative process at the prison.

Led by our 77 -year - old volunteer and artist

Sara Mamen, the workshop showed the

women how to use watercolours and paint

images that were concerned with a bright

future. She and encouraged to think positive

thoughts that led them to create paintings of

how they see their future, in a positive

manner.

The workshop was intended to encourage

them to not only partake in Painting images

but imagine the future, create images that

indirectly create healing in the subconscious

mind and hope for the future. The workshop

lasted three hours.

TAOS volunteers: Kuku, Leah and Sara with Annmary, a volunteer at the prison

Quote from Sara Mamen:

I went for this workshop with blank brain and an

open mind. The reason was that there were more

don'ts than dos in the instructions I had received.

But seeing the participants' reaction on seeing us, I

shed my apprehension. They were like any other

group of participants of an art workshop I have

faced. I told them that “Women and Today " was

our theme. I showed them two of my painting, one

of greenery and another of sunset to emphasise

color combinations and their effect. Then one

abstract painting and drawing of women's faces.

Except a few, all participants were keen on

drawing and applying colors. Some of them had

some experience, others were painting for the first

time. My aim was to “open up their minds” to ideas

that concerned their dreams of a bright future,

which was gradually achieved. I am very thankful

for this experience, it truly was a fruitful day.”

Note written by volunteers on inmates and

their experience at the workshop

Hi all. To be frank, I went for this workshop with

blank brain and an open mind. The reason was

that there were more don'ts than dos in the

instructions I received. But seeing the participants'

reaction on seeing us I had shed my apprehension.

They were like any other group I have faced. I just

emphasised that "women and today " was our

theme. I showed them two of my painting one of

greenery and another of sunset to emphasise color

combinations and their effect. Then one abstract

painting and drawing of women's faces. Except a

few all participants were keen on drawing and

applying colors. Some of them had experience,

some were doing for the first time. My aim of

opening up of their mind to idea of their dreams of

future was gradually achieved. It was a fruitful day.

Thank you TAOS and Tanya.


HERITAGE WALKS WITH SAHAPEDIA

On 14 January, 2018, 36 students from

Thoppumpady's Our Lady's Convent Girls

Higher Secondary School at the Kerala

Museum. This two-session event was

organised in collaboration with Sahapedia

https://www.sahapedia.org and the

museum.

Session one: Following introductions, the girls

were split into groups named after

international museums. They were introduced

to the idea and purpose of museums through

a visual presentation, after which each team

summarised what they had learnt.

Session two: In the art gallery, the girls were

given clues to embark on a art hunt to identify

paintings by Indian masters! After this, they

gathered in front of each find, expressed

opinions on what they could observe and told

about the relevance of the master artist.

Part of TAOS’ art education initiatives are

museum walks and gallery open studios.

ARTIST TALK BY INDU ANTONY

Residency artist of Kashi Art Gallery, Indu

Antony, spoke to the students of Sacred Heart

College in Thevara about her journey as an

artist, concepts and medium of work,

including her residencies abroad. The talk

ended with a Q&A session.


ART EDUCATION

February 23rd, 2018

Amaravathy School, Fort Kochi

A year and a half after art education was

started at Amaravathy school, the students

were ready to explore further. Artist Bibin

asked them to draw images of their school

and portray them using water colours.

February 9th, 2018

St Thomas School, Thevara

An art workshop for students of St. Thomas

School – taught them new techniques and

use a new medium. Though new to water

colours, the students’ works consisted of a

variety of images (mainly animals), each

portraying the creativity, imagination and

talent of the young artists.

January 27th, 2018

St Thomas School, Thevara

The Muziris Heritage Walk was conducted by

TAOS in collaboration with Sahapedia to

enable students to get educated in the

ancient history of the region, led by a curator

of the walk. The 40 students visited Paliam

Palace, Paliam Naalukettu and two temples

adjacent to the Palace premise.


January 14th, 2018

Our Lady’s Girls High School,

Thoppumpady

On 14 January 2018, 36 students from

Thoppumpady’s Our Lady’s Convent Girls

Higher Secondary School visited the Kerala

History Museum. This two-session event was

organised in collaboration with Sahapedia

and the museum.

Session one: Following introductions, the girls

were split into groups named after

international museums. They were introduced

to the idea and purpose of museums through

a visual presentation, after which each team

summarized what they had learnt.

Session two: In the art gallery, the girls were

given clues to embark on an art hunt to

identify paintings by Indian masters! After this,

they gathered in front of each find, expressed

opinions on what they could observe and told

about the relevance of the master artist.

Part of TAOS’ art education initiatives are

museum walks and gallery open studios.

December 8th, 2017

St Thomas School, Thevara

Working on the concept of seasons, the

students of St Thomas School put together

their thoughts in colour and sketch, from

Autumn to Winter.

January 27th, 2018

St Thomas School, Thevara

The Muziris Heritage Walk was conducted by

TAOS in collaboration with Sahapedia to

enable students to get educated in the

ancient history of the region, led by a curator

of the walk. The 40 students visited Paliam

Palace, Paliam Naalukettu and two temples

adjacent to the Palace premise.


November 28th, 2017

Amravathy School, Fort Kochi

Students at the school were introduced to

water colours for the first time. After a year of

understanding and exploring concepts and

colours, students were given the opportunity

to work with paint. Artist Bibin offered a

framework and allowed them to explore the

creating of images and the use of paint.

November 25th, 2017

St Thomas School, Thevara

Thirty students of the St. Thomas Girl’s High

school gathered together for their maiden

theater workshop at 10am. It started with

theater expert and TAOS member Feroze

asking the students to introduce themselves

using actions.

A series of ice-breakers were followed by

introductory workshops. As the workshop

tapered down to an end, students were

pushed to bring their concentration and

creative skills to the test with an activity that

called for the making of postures that spoke

of a given situation. It closed with the students

sharing their learnings.

November 4th, 2017

St Thomas School, Thevara

The art workshop at the St Thomas School

included two distinct sections. The first

involved perspective drawing in an effort to

improve the technique oriented skills of the

children. The second was expressing a

recollected memory on their pages.

This dual approach of honing technique and

letting the imagination run free is focused on

helping the children to improve their skill and

creative thinking.


THANK YOU

We would like to thank our supporters, without

them we would not have been able to reach out

to so many children. A special thank you to our

new sponsors :

Indasda

Cochin Round Table 71

Pescainde

For year puns support Thank you to:

Faber Castell

Alfa channel

Kashi Art Gallery

Jitaura

Digital Mesh

Our collaborators

Sahapedia

SOI

TISS

Kochi Muziris Biennale


OUR TEAM

Editor

Shana Susan Ninan

Design

Sujith P R

Our Art Education School Heads who make the

classes happen without a hitch

Kuku Ravi

Kavitha Kochkudy

Radhika Bachani

Shalini Dominic

Special thanks to Volunteers

Saswata and Arjun for their hardwork, endless hours on their

scooter to get work done on time for the period they worked with

TAOS

New volunteer Jessy, for deligent support on administration work


www.taos.org.in

mail@taos.org.in

www.facebook.com/theartoutreachsociety/

www.instagram.com/taos.org.in/

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