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‘We need the literature of other countries to expand our
horizons and stimulate our ideas. Without it, we are not only
diminished, we are starved’
(The Times, Magnus Linklater 29/06/05)
Following My Paint Brush
by Gita Wolf
Age Range: 6-8
This is the story of Dulari Devi’s momentous journey to become an artist in the Mithila style of folk painting from Bihar, eastern India. Dulari was born into a life of poverty and hard and relentless labour. Her father was a fisherman and her mother worked in the rice fields. She never knew anything other than work. First, she helped her mother and then she worked as a cleaner in the house of an artist where she first discovered her own creativity. As she learnt to paint and draw she very soon began to develop her own expressive style.
“As time went on I couldn’t imagine a single day without painting. It was a part of my life.”
Dulari’s story is told through her own paintings and the simple, yet powerful words of Gita Wolf. Once Dulari began to paint and her paintings gained recognition, she just could not stop. “I was so proud that people wanted to know about me and what I thought.”
A beautiful book, both in terms of the remarkable story of one young women’s determination to change her life, and the charming simplicity of the artwork with its repetitive geometrical patterns and bold colour that makes it a truly inspirational read as well as being a showcase for Indian folk art.