26 July, 2021

'It Was A Defining Moment, I Went To Art School'

Satish Gujral turned 13 in 1938

'It Was A Defining Moment, I Went To Art School'
Art started off in my life quite literally as an accident. At the age of eight, while on a holiday in Pahalgam, I fell into a river. I was saved but my leg was so badly injured that I spent the next two years in bed, undergoing a series of operations that did little to help me walk but resulted in my going deaf as well. By the time I was 13, my father was seriously concerned about my education. He brought me books to read, but since I hadn't yet got to the class where they taught English, the books were in Urdu and far beyond my age.

Then he heard of a new school for the deaf and dumb in Delhi. He took me there. But all the children there were born deaf and dumb and used sign language. The headmaster who became close to me noticed that I talked less and less and was resorting to sign language. He advised my father to pull me out of the school.

I was back at home. It was at this time, lying idly in bed, that I began doodling. My doodling was perhaps no different from other children's at this age, but my father was desperate. He...

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