Ringing echo of silence

Vitebsk hosts exhibition of pictures created by deaf children

By Galina Yevmenova

Echo of Silence captures scenes from everyday life, revealing the thoughts of children who are hearing impaired. For them, the world remains quiet, yet deafeningly tender at the same time. They learn to understand without sound and speak without words. Gestures and expressions allow them to reveal many emotions, but there are some feelings that cannot be ‘read’ on one’s face or through the wave of a hand. However, it’s easier to reveal one’s feelings with the help of a brush.

Vitebsk has gained acquaintance with the creativity of Minsk children who study at Farba workshop (at school #14 in Minsk, for children with hearing impairment). Their works have been exhibited in Switzerland, France, the UK, the USA, Israel and Japan to date.

The Echo of Silence project has been implemented with support from the National Art Museum, the Belarusian Education Ministry and the American Embassy. Each painting is filled with splashes of warmth, love, sincerity and the great desire to be heard.

Works by these young artists are fascinating and surprising, inspiring us to ponder our place in the world. Ordinary schoolchildren explore the works with pleasure, as do pupils from specialised educational establishments in the Dvina River Region and those from Maladzik Aesthetic Education Centre, which is hosting the exhibition. Photos by Marina Batyukova are also on show, capturing the lives and communications of the children who live in their world of silence. Of course, they aren’t deprived of other opportunities to perceive our bright world.

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