A painting that changed a 14-year-old’s life as a painter. Just days after his mother’s death, the young artist wins an international award for painting on mothers.
My mother and the neighboring mothers
Anujath Sindhu Vinaylal, who hails from Kerala painted a picture that describes the struggles of different mothers in a day, he named it ‘My mother and the neighboring mothers’.
However, the painting was done more than two years ago, and not for any competition or contest. In 2019, Anujath won an international award in a competition held by Shankar’s Academy of Art and Book Publishing. The painting won the award at a really bad time for him and the family.
Anujath’s mother died on November 15, after being diagnosed with the heart-related disease. She was undergoing treatment at Kozhikode Medical College Hospital. Anujath’s father, Vinaylal, a designer by profession, quietly uploads a status on WhatsApp about his son’s winning the award just days after the passing of Sindhu, Anujath’s mother.
“She knew he got the award. The news had come earlier and she was quite happy about it. But by the time he got the certificate of recognition she had passed away. Sindhu had a heart problem,” says Vinaylal.
Mother being the biggest cheerleader
“My mother was my biggest cheerleader, and she would always encourage me to make each painting better than the previous one. With her faith and my father’s support, I hope to pursue this professionally after I complete my studies,” Anujath told.
The boy had a good taste for painting since he was a 4-year-old kid. He never got trained but drew and painted from his surroundings. His father Vinaylal, recognized Anujath’s art in a very different manner. He did not send him to any classes as he believed that an institution would limit his curious mind with guidelines and rules. So, Anujath started participating in various competitions through the insistence of his school.
The idea of painting
He had a keen interest in observing his surroundings and articulating them through his paintings. His subjects vary from something as simple as an ant crawling near the basin to a book lying on a shelf. Similarly, ‘My mother and the mothers in the neighborhood’ painting was created to describes the struggles of different mothers in a day.
“The idea to paint on mothers came from seeing her and other women like her work, in the kitchen and the rest of the house, all day long. It’s basically a collage of the activities a mother does all day,” Anujath says.
Young Anujath completed the painting with no intention of submitting it for any competitions. He had done it purely out of love for his mother. However, last year, his father, Vinaylal, decided to participate in an international drawing competition conducted by Shankar’s Academy of Art and Book Publishing in Delhi. The result was announced when his mother, Sindhu, was alive. However, by the time certificate and medal arrived, she had passed away from a heart condition.
Now the medal lies on her photo-frame as she had earlier liked painting after he showed it to her.
At the age of 9 Anujath got the Clint Memorial International Award for painting. And, many more awards followed including UN recognition in 2015 for paintings on the theme ‘We have energy’.
The proudest moment for the family came in when former President Pranab Mukherjee honored him for his work. The family flew to Delhi to collect the National Child Award for Exceptional Achievement on Children’s Day in 2016.