Deaf painter Pooja Bodas’ feelings & imagination come to life on canvas
Black and white or colour, deaf artist Pooja Bodas brings amazing imagination and skill to her works of art.
When Shrikrushna Mukund Bodas painted in his spare time, watched closely by daughter Pooja, little did he imagine this would spark off a lifelong interest and passion.
“As a child I would observe my Baba doing many paintings as a hobby”, recalls Pooja, who is 32 years old. “It was interesting for me”.
Pooja was seven months old when she was diagnosed with permanent bilateral hearing loss. Her father’s job took him to various remote areas across Maharashtra.
“For a while I was in service in Mumbai and I could provide good schooling for Pooja”, says Mr Bodas. “After 1994, I was in remote areas working on rehabilitation programmes. So, Pooja studied at home on her own with our guidance and cleared Class 10 as an external student”.
Amazing range & repertoire
When the time came to choose a career path, art emerged as an attractive option.
Baba suggested a career in art as he said that without uttering a single word art will speak for you. That
convinced me and I enrolled at the College of Fine Arts in Satara. Every year, I got more engrossed as I found painting to be the best form of self-expression. All the thoughts and emotions swirling inside are captured in my paintings. – Pooja Bodas, Painter
Pooja’s preferred medium in acrylic. “I have tried other forms like oil and water but felt more comfortable using acrylic”, she adds.
Having led a sheltered existence, college was a challenge at first for Pooja. “I worried about how I would learn through lectures when I can’t hear a single word”. Until she found out that she was the third student with a hearing impairment to attend the college. Her principal and class teacher ensured she had the support needed. “They gave me extra time and used sign language so I could learn”.
Has held solo & group exhibitions
Pooja has displayed her paintings at exhibitions – solo and group – in Mumbai, Pune and Kolhapur. She was also invited to do a demo at Samarth Vidyamandir, a school for children with disabilities in Kolhapur.
Her range and repertoire are quite incredible given her age. From portraits to landscapes to compositions, her work show vision as well as ambition. “I have great inclination towards abstract or modern art”, says Pooja. “Some inner force helps me visualise and helps me present that in canvas or paper.
Going ahead she wants to explore ways to give meaningful strength to her expressions. She is inspired by Indian as well as foreign artists.
The man who inspired her down this road watches her progress with pride. “I ask her about her creations and tell her to explain them to me as an art lover. I find this makes her more certain in her expressions”. says her father.
Watch in Sign Language
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