Hong Kong Christian Service

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Issue 006
2015 Mar

Art talent uncovered
An EETC graduate awarded with gold medal

Everyone is beautiful in their own way. Keung Yuk Lun, a student in our Tuen Mun Early Education and Training Centre (TMEETC) won the gold prize in the student division with his painting "In the Field" in "Cross All Borders: Hong Kong Festival Showcasing New Visual Artists with Disabilities 2014" organised by the Arts with the Disabled Association Hong Kong. He won the merit prize in this competition one and a half year ago when he was the youngest among the awardees.

Art opens the door to communication

Yuk Lun is now 7 years old, studying in primary two. He used to be quiet and shy, he did not know how to express himself and seemed restless. It was when he entered the world of art, he began to be very engrossed in art creation. He becomes very enthusiastic whenever he speaks of his paintings, he would joyfully explain to others, and then we are able to enter into his inner world and imagination. Art has opened the door to communication between him and his parents as well as those around him.

Recently, the primary school where Yuk Lun is studying is holding a personal art exhibition for him. Notice boards in school are full of his work. Yuk Lun's mother said, "Yuk Lun loves painting to the extent that he will draw one each day". His parents are planning to publish his paintings with the scholarship. They gave Yuk Lun a 'mission' to let him decide which painting to be included in his art album.

The talent of Yuk Lun was discovered in 2012 when he participated in an art group in TMEETC. At that time, an art training course was co-sponsored by Redford Charitable Foundation and Eco-Home International Limited. Teachers and artists took the students into a different environment of art creation where marking scheme is not the only criteria and students could express themselves freely. In this process, parents let go of their inner conflicts and look at their children from a different perspective and some even explore the imaginative world of their children.

A breakthrough from the tradition and a path to appreciation and respect

At that time, Yuk Lun’s mother participated in the course with Yuk Lun, she at first was also bounded by the traditional concept of art, hoping that Yuk Lun could imitate his painting on real objects, but after the course, she changed her way of thinking about her child and art.

"I used to think as the sky is blue and it should be painted in blue, when the painting is of a different colour, I want it to be changed to blue", said Yuk Lun's mother. It was after a debriefing by teachers in the centre then Yuk Lun's mother learnt that there is no specific style for art, and this however enables her to find more ways to communicate with Yuk Lun.

During the process, she found Yuk Lun very immersed in his paintings, ever when he encountered failure, he can release his frustration naturally through art creation and he has improvements in observation and expressing himself.

Yuk Lun's father also said, "In the one and a half year's training in the centre, apart from hoping that Yuk Lun could eventually enter the mainstream education, his talent blossoms. He is able to express himself in his drawings which let us explore another side of Yuk Lun: his attentiveness, self-confidence and language abilities."

Mrs. Keung also encourages other parents who have similar situations to look at their children through the perspective of appreciation to find out the gifted side of their children, to help them build up their self-confidence. They would face frustration somehow; however, self-confidence can help them get over difficulties.

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