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World of birds - Salisalima Ratha
Arts Speak

World of birds - Salisalima Ratha

Divya Menon

Art does amazing things to people! It makes artists out of doctors, mathematicians, economists, corporate managers and even accountants! One such artist is Salisalima Ratha from Odisha who holds an MBA in Finance and an MPhil in Economics and is also a brilliant artist whose works are bright, colourful and dynamic. Her works are pleasantly arresting. The first thing that you notice as you survey her works is the element of positivity that is so palpable. They remind one of the enchanting cartoons of Walt Disney with their smooth contours and colours that captivate viewers of all ages.

A loving grandmother's bedtime stories packed with the adventures of birds and nature impacted her mind as a child and she grew up to love nature that she was part of growing up in the scenic locales of Odisha.  In all her works one finds a deep presence of nature and most of them revolve around birds of all sorts.

World of birds - Salisalima Ratha

To her, birds are symbolic of this freedom, destination and focus. She believes that man craves for freedom from bondages to fly high like birds.  As a keen observer of birds she says, "They are the most beautiful creations of God".  Their sounds and colours have long attracted her and inspired her immeasurably. And this beauty, love and intrigue is what she brings to her canvasses.

She is a self taught artist who believes that art education is a huge plus as being self taught has often been a limiting factor in her career in terms of exposure.  But she goes on to add that regardless of whether one holds the necessary degrees or not, the most important thing is to have the passion, the emotional  connection with art.

Talking about her forthcoming projects she says, "my upcoming project work is the painting of red listed birds. We are destroying nature and birds and for this very  reason some are endangered. We should take some steps to preserve them. I want to create an awareness through a solo exhibition of my paintings."

At a time when man has wrecked havoc in nature with his indiscriminate approach, conscientious artists like Salisalima hold the power in their brush to bring about massive changes in society's thought process, through art that stir his conscience.

Apart from painting, this artist owns and manages an activity centre where she holds multiple hobby classes for children from all age groups. She is also a poet and theatre artist who does small mini acts with children based on current topics like Swachh Bharat Abhiyan, Acid attack victim, Say no to plastic, Reduce paper wastage, Save environment and so on.

With very deep family values, she believes that the support of her husband and daughter play a very major role in helping her pursue her passion. She says, "family support is as important a factor as passion to fuel the art within"!