Easel Art Foundation was launched in the year 2015. The objectives of the Foundation are to generate ideas and solutions for future and exploring the areas of ecology, pedagogy, health, art, culture and community in the social and cultural context of Northeastern India. The Foundation’s focus is to work with the children in the rural areas, and to guide them. Secondly, it makes an effort to collaborate with creative minds from multiple disciplines to bring their ideas to life for self-growth by providing wider community access. This information was shared by Wahida Ahmed, founder Secretary of Easel Art Foundation, with a section of media in Guwahati in an informal interaction with them on completion of one of her dream projects, “The Blurred Perimeters.”
The Blurred Perimeters saw the convergence of 12 eminent artists of India at the Kaziranga National Park area. They spent two days interacting with local artists and school children sharing with them intricacies of artwork and giving them a direction for excelling in this field. The workshop conducted by the artists spread over two days, March 3 & 4, in which there were art lessons, field visits, interactive sessions, and exchange of ideas. On the first day, 51 underprivileged children drawn from local schools, were divided into 15 groups, each consisting of 4-5 students, and they were given comprehensive lessons on using dots and lines to create a work of art representing day to day activities of life. The young artists were told that if they took art seriously, it could be a lucrative profession for them.
The 12 eminent artists – Gogi Sarojpal, Farhad Hussain, Vinod Sharma, Sudip Roy, Anand Panchal, Dileep Sharma, George Martin, Laxman Alley, Shampa Sirca Das, Binoy Verghese, Simanta J Baruah, Dharmendra Prasad, and Pallav Saikia – came from Indian metro cities such as Delhi, Mumbai, Bhopal, Hyderabad, and Thiruvanantapuram. They were overwhelmed not only by the scenic beauty of Kaziranga but also by the creative ability of the local youngsters.
Wahida Rahman added, “With a motto to educate and serve the underprivileged children of the region, we have been conducting art workshops and other creative activities, particularly in the rural areas to acclimatize the kids with the rudiments of the beauty of art, and how it can be channelised to bring their ideas to life for self-growth by providing wider community access.”
During the two-day programme in Kaziranga, the children were taken to cultivation fields and made to replicate what they saw on ground to paper and canvas given to them. Easel Art’s plan to reach the vernacular schools and to motivate the students to make art a tool of daily life was fulfilled to a great extent through the programme, Blurred Perimeters.
While State Agriculture Minister Atul Bora attended the event and felicitated the visiting artists, the State Tourism Department extended various kinds of support for the success of the programme.
Wahida Ahmed also informed that her Foundation had started a commercial art gallery in Zoo Road in 2008. The same will be reopened in Kharguli during the forthcoming Bihu festival. The creations of the children during the workshop will be displayed in the gallery.