"Every child is an artist. The problem is how to remain an artist once he grows up,” the century-best artist Pablo Picasso had once said.

Picking the pulse from right where Picasso left, Raghuvansham School of Modern Art is working hard since over a decade to retain every child’s art in its purest form.

To nurture the promote young fine art talent in India, the Delhi-based modern art institute held a week-long art exhibition – PRADARSHINI 2016-17, from December 30, 2016 to January 5, 2017, at the All India Fine Arts & Crafts Society (AIFACS) here.

“PRADARSHINI is a platform for everyone, where they can exhibit their work. It’s an effort to give artists a feel of what is the future of fine arts and how they can exhibit, and what horizons they can scale if go professionally with it,” Raghuvir Shah, director of the Raghuvansham School of Modern Art, told thestatesman.com.

As many as 72 students, from pre-primary class to college going students and house wives, participated at the event to showcase their world of imaginations and thoughts on canvas with alluring paintings of subjects like Buddha, Krishna and landscapes.

Besides the painting exhibition that demonstrated a stronger future of art in India, the modern art institue organised various online competitions, for which artists were honoured with awards as well. Icing on the cake, AIFACS presented each artist with a participation certificate.

Raghuvir believes such awards boosts the morale of an artist and when an artist gets honoured at such a tender age, the awards becomes larger than life.

“The govt has approved the ECA (Extra Curricular Activities) quota recently, so the students will get a benefit of this certificate in their career as well. They may add this certificate in their portfolios. It's a national level gallery, so these awards here will definitely give a flight to their career and motivate them to better with their art,” he added.

Unlike the story of the institution, the story of artists weren’t much in a straight line. Their age and temperament varied and so did their stories.

“I am coming here, since the age of five or six. Initially, I had no interest in art but then I started doing pottery in my school. I really liked it, did better and then I came here to explore my hands with the colours,” Manav Gupta, Class XI, GD Goenka Public School, said.

Manav’s painting, an aghori (saint) smoking, didn’t appear like a child play as it depicted an intense idea over a black and white canvas with bright colours on the forehead of the subject. 

Talking about the inspiration behind the painting, Manav added: “I am a teenage boy so when I saw such figures around me, I was very much attracted, so I decided to paint this. You see the forehead is the centre point of the painting, so I kept it vivid to make it stand out of the entire canvas.”

Despite having a fair hand with the brushes, Manav somewhere fears to continue painting as a profession. “I want to do MBA and might join my family business, or else, my first preference would be to become a jewellery designer. So that, I can pursue my passion with a secure future.”

However, Manav has a strong family support as they want him to pursue his passion in fine arts. The boy’s father, Shashank Gupta uttered the word “proud” when asked how does he feels to see the creations of his child.

“Every time I have a look at his work, he amazes me with his talent. He has a calm composure but make me convinced with his work that he can do better with every passing day. I see a lot of potential in him with fine arts. I would love to see him as an artist in future.”

Just like Shashank, another proud father, Balgovind Aggarwal, whose two daughters — Vaishnavi Aggarwal, Class II and Vaibhavi Aggarwal, Pre-primary — won second and first prize in their respective age-group categories, stood strongly in support of his children interest.

“We feel proud to see their alluring work at such a young age. Things that we couldn’t do, they are doing so beautifully. They have our full support,” Balgovind said.

Both the girls used to draw and scribble on home walls, but then the institute brought the art alive on paper, the mother of these girls, Meenu Aggarwal said, who seemed to be filled with the joys of spring.