Prabha Shah: Hearing beyond sound

Report :Manushri BahukhandiShe is deaf from birth…yet she hears from the depth of her colours and from the magic of her paintings. She is none other than renowned Prabha Shah who is an established and has a distinguished reputation over the last 30 years.

Report :Manushri Bahukhandi

She is deaf from birth…yet she hears from the depth of her colours and from the magic of her paintings. She is none other than renowned Prabha Shah who is an established and has a distinguished reputation over the last 30 years.

Born in Jodhpur (Rajasthan), Prabha Shah received her early education at the Government Lady Noyce School for the deaf, dumb and the blind (1958-64). She studied painting as an informal student at Jaipur’s Kanoria Mahila Mahavidyalaya (1966-69), and then under the guidance of P.N. Choyal at the University of Udaipur (1969-73). Prabha’s strong point is not the human figure. Her painting often has an architectural feature ­ a few steps, a floor, a door ­ and often a natural element ­ a distant plain, trees, a placid sea. The use of strong colours, pale blues, rich reds, deep greens, alongside pure earth tones, and the effect is to make her work almost luminous.

Architecture which has imbued her consciousness since the days she spent in Udaipur, the city of palaces Prabha Shah’s canvas tells us a story about men who braved the sun’s scorching heat, it tell us a story that is so different from her own pain and horrors that are so easily forgotten by just looking at her painting. Her life is as vibrant, as sunny as the skies in her paintings. Her colours are awash with an inner peace, a meditative calm. Nothing disturbs the ordered canvas, nothing strikes a jarring note.

Prabha is always reluctant to make statements about her works: first, because they speak for themselves; second, because she thinks that others have written about it better than she can. She is too much in love with the forms, perspectives and atmosphere of the natural world. Her works are in the collection of the Rashtrapati Bhavan, Cabinet Secretariat, Raj Niwas, and Delhi’s National Gallery of Modern Art.

“We don`t choose to be the common silent minority...........

It is our right to be the uncommon and noble silent

minority...........

“If we can, we seek opportunity, not security...............

We want to take the calculated risk...

to dream and to build, to fail and to succeed....”

(By Frank James John Lala, Jr., Ph.D.)

This what Prabha Shah did………… she dreamt, built, failed and yes she did succeed.

Tags: