Dr Satendra Singh, Assistant Professor of Physiology at the University College of Medical Sciences at the University of Delhi, writes: Infinite Ability, the disability subgroup of Medical Humanities Group of University College of Medical Sciences (UCMS), Delhi is organizing a workshop entitled ‘Blind With Camera’. This is an attempt to empower the visually impaired and blind student’s of Delhi University. The mission is to create a community where people with visual impairment can learn, participate, enjoy and practice the art of photography.
As workshop organizers we believe that disability is a diverse human condition, people with disability are “differently-abled” and art by them is an invaluable form of expressions. We can prove that they have interesting way to perceive and lead life and art “by” all and “for” all can lead to an equitable society.
Mr Partho Bhowmick started the Blind With Camera project in 2006 and successfully driven the project into a national exhibition travelling across India. Early 2009, he founded the Beyond Sight Foundation, a not-for-profit organization prompting the art of photography in people with visual impairment and capacity building around the “Non-Retinal” Art culture in India. It provides a platform for the visually impaired to share their “Inner Gallery” of images – their imagination and point-of-view of the visual world, and speak out about their unique experience, feelings, challenges and hopes.
Pictures taken by the visually impaired during the photo workshop on 27-28 August will be converted into touchable raised pictures, trainers will describe the picture and guide the participants to understand the raised pictures by touch. A part of the workshop will be devoted to sensory photography for the sighted. Here, in a role reversal, trained visually impaired photographer will guide blindfolded sighted people to take pictures. Sensory photography bring sighted people in contact with visually impaired – reduce the gap between “us” and “them.”
These pictures will then be exhibited in accessible ways (touch & feel images, audio tours, Braille notes, Large Prints and visual aids)along with normal photographs on 3 December 2012 on the occasion of International Day of Persons with Disabilities. We hope, this public “inclusive” exhibition will go a long in spreading awareness and encouraging specials schools to used multisensory materials for general education for the visually impaired (an approach which is not extensively used in India).
The Enabling Unit, UCMS and Equal Opportunity Cell, Delhi University are the joint partners of this workshop.