You've heard of rags to riches stories and you've heard of rags to riches stories. Here's the ultimate.
Daira - Centre for Art and Culture is organising an exhibition of drawings and mixed media paintings by Toofan Rafai from 18th to 31st January. A collection of 34 of Rafai's recent works are on display. All the paintings have been done with natural dyes.
Toofan Rafai is an 82-year-old senior artist who was born in a community of beggars. His life, then, is a typical rags to riches story. After begging on the roadside for 19 years, Rafai managed to find a job in a factory in Ahmedabad. One day, accidentally, his hand slipped into the machine, and most of his fingers on the right hand got chopped off.
As he was admitted in a hospital and crying over his fate, one of his ward nurses got him a paper and some paints, and convinced him to paint a picture. Inspite of his handicap, he painted an astonishingly stunning picture.
Realising his hidden talent, the nurse secured him admission to a diploma course in drawing & painting at Sir J J School of Art, Mumbai, and since then there has been no looking back. He went on to complete his P G in Mural Decoration under the Government of India Scholarship Program, at Mumbai. He then began research into his chosen subject