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The Journey of an Artist

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One memory from my childhood that stands out clearly above all else, is of me sitting at the dining table, sketching. My mother would save all sorts of paper, pencils and pens for me to use when I returned from school. Such freedom gave me a foundation of curiosity to explore art of all kinds.

Through school, college and beyond, I seemed anchored in creating my own world in different hues. It never occurred to me to study art formally, and I pursued my education in Psychology instead, which was another subject that I enjoyed intensely. I went on to get a degree in Education followed by a Diploma in Counselling.

It was while working at SAARTHAK – an NGO active in the field of mental health – that I realized, first hand, the calming and soothing effect art had on most people. I started working out art-related activities for small groups of children and adults. These were not art-therapy based as much as they were therapeutic in nature.

The art room soon became a safe and encouraging environment for members to be in. It was insightful to see how people across age groups responded to color, line, space and materials.

It was around this time that my focus shifted to my own creative journey and I decided to give it my full attention by exploring mediums and subjects that excited me. I spent more time learning, reading, painting and sketching than I had ever done before. It was challenging yet highly rewarding. This culminated in my first solo show in 2005 at the India Habitat Center.

Read the full article here in our October 2020 issue.

Prenita Dutt is a Delhi-born, self-taught artist with a degree in Psychology from the University of Delhi. She has had exhibitions across India and her works can be found with collectors from around the world. Prenita’s paintings can best be described as a joyous celebration of existence and what she likes to call ‘the simple pleasures of life’. Her role as an art-facilitator for adults with disabilities, spanning over a decade, has been crucial in shaping her attitude towards art. Prenita recently illustrated a book by the celebrated author Ruskin Bond, titled, “While the Birds Still Sing”. Her own writing and sketches have been compiled into a book, “Notes from my Garden”. At present, she is working towards an art exhibition scheduled for April 2021 at the Visual Art Gallery, India Habitat Centre, New Delhi.

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