Various art forms have been a great way of expression for the students at Jai Vakeel Foundation (JVF), be it music, art, or dance. For our collaboration with the 77-year-old NGO that serves the Intellectual & Developmentally Disabled (IDD), We at Mesmerize hosted a workshop at the school with six of their incredibly talented students.
Meet The Artists:
A group of high-energy and curious kids with infectious smiles were eager to learn new things. They also happened to have intellectual disabilities & other associated disorders.
Utkarsh is a friendly, charming 17-year-old boy with a mild intellectual disability. Sports serve as one of his eternal passions and he is the happiest when outdoors.
Harsh is a 15-year-old with autism spectrum disorder and intellectual disability. He works well when clear instructions are given.
Zahid is an enthusiastic 17-year-old with a hearing impairment and moderate intellectual disability who loves school.
Prajakta is a quiet and shy 17-year-old with moderate intellectual disability but with the most dazzling smile.
Shravani is a 16-year-old with moderate intellectual disability who has problems with concentration. She is very social and loves company.
Pranali is a 17-year-old with a mild intellectual disability. She loves craft activities and is the happiest being with her friends.
Their dedication and talent prove that a person is not a disability. A person is a person.
At the Workshop-
Our team along with the teachers at the Jai Vavkeel foundation helped conduct a workshop on three different art forms with the children. We started with the galaxy print, which included washes of black paint all through their canvases. Following this, the sponge technique of adding color to these black canvases was a fun experience for the children. The second painting in the lineup was alcohol-ink, an art form done by fluid paints. The kids used all their creativity and dropped the perfect combination of fluids onto the paper. The results of this session were hugely impressive. The last workshop was tie and dye, made through dipping tied cloth in a phased manner in hot dyes.
To assist them in the process, the teachers of JVF and our team members put in their best but these talented kids didn’t seem to need much guidance. Creating, drawing, exploring expression through different artistic means; it was a great day seeped in art where everyone had a fun time.
The art forms created at this workshop were galactic, tie & dye, and alcohol ink to develop digital prints from these art pieces. To respect their dedication towards art, we at Mesmerize have decided to launch an exclusive collection of fashion accessories based on the art pieces made by them. We aim to use our voices to start a dialogue about inclusion. We all live within a vast network. Encouraging awareness and inclusion, by recruiting students, families, and businesses in a network requires each of us to raise our hand and participate. Inclusion starts with one, imagine the ripple effect if each of us took responsibility to challenge our assumptions, push ourselves and be more accepting of others.
Spending time with the children made us realize that what we have in common is more important than what keeps us apart. Our entire team was so honored and grateful for this experience, as it touched our hearts deeply. We would urge you all to spend time on their campus someday. See if you can walk away with your heart unchanged.