By Risidra Mendis
He has travelled to places that you and I
are yet to see. He has successfully captured these unusual places of
serenity in his paintings. But today the famous Royden Gibbs has
passed on some of his unique qualities to his students.
Having held an exhibition of his own,Gibbs
now plans to hold an exhibition of his students’ paintings next
Having experienced the joy of learning to
paint, his students had this to say. "I have been interested in
art for a long time and whenever I had the time to spare I would
sketch. I love to capture on canvass or paper the beauty around me.
Under Royden’s guidance I have begun to observe more closely the
shapes, colours and effect of light in the environment. I especially
like doing portraits which I find exciting and challenging. I
consider myself privileged to have a career teaching art to
children," Devika Florrimell said.
"It was late in life that I fulfilled
a life long liking for painting. With brush and paint to make
colours move and blend to make them come alive is an exciting
experience," Arjun Delgoda explained.
"Through my art I appreciate nature
and the environment more. It gives me the serenity, solitude and
peace of mind. Time spent on painting is time spent on myself and
food for the soul. It gives me a sense of relaxation and also an
expression of thoughts in silence. I enjoy experimenting with colour
and form and learning the awesome beauty and the depth of the
environment," Yasmin Mohomed said.
"I took up art as a hobby less than a
year ago, and have found it to be challenging and relaxing. Although
I was a keen student of art during my school days I never found the
time to paint until now. I would recommend taking up painting to
anyone who would like to get away from it all and experience a world
of serene excitement," says Nilmini Nayomi Mahaegodage.
"Art was my favourite subject at
school. I continued to draw and paint when I was directed to Gibbs
to learn more on the subject. I took a great liking to learn more
about perspectives and colour. My love for art developed a new
interest in his outdoor group art classes," Tishan Perera said.
"A desire to know how to draw and
paint was very strong in me as a child. My teacher Gibbs taught me
not only to paint but also to appreciate little things,"
Kalpani Fernando explained.
"I was interested in art from my
school days. Having won the college art prize in 1961 at St. Thomas’
College Gurutalawa. I continued to further enhance my abilities by
joining the Mudliyar A. C. G. S. Amerasekera School of Art. I
remember exhibiting two of my paintings at the art gallery. I could
not continue with my art during the few years I was in the United
Kingdom. However when I met Gibbs at an art exhibition he made me
interested in drawing again. I enjoy painting as it relaxes me as
the building trade I am in is a very stressful job," Gamini
"Gibbs my teacher unravelled a whole
new world for me. A world of colour, form and perspective. I started
looking at everything with new eyes. "look at the sky, at the
sea, at the leaves and think of what colours they hold," he
told me. To me the sky was not an ordinary blue anymore. Nature he
told us was the best teacher. His love for his land and the passion
with which he paints has made him brave all kinds of weather and
discomfort while travelling for miles into forgotten parts of the
land to capture a fast changing lifestyle and landscape for the sake
of posterity. I have had the pleasure of watching him work on some
of those painting trips as an awe struck student," said Dilani
Thamara Damayathi has a degree from the
Kelaniya University (Aesthetic studies). She has worked as a
designer in the Tulhiriya Textile factory for two years and joined
Ananda College, Colombo 10, as the advanced level art teacher.
Thamara has chosen water colours as the main medium of teaching.
Paints n Brushes
an exhibition of paintings of the students of Gibbs will be held at
the Lionel Wendt on July 15 and 16.
image library in the making
Pinthoora.com which is to be
launched in August is hoping to be the largest image library in the
country. An important feature of this project is that any
photographer will be able to become a member of this image bank. It
is headed by Prasantha Dermatage, director / creative director of
the Mudra Group of companies. He has over 15 years of experience in
this field of advertising and has realised his dream in starting
such a project.
Prasantha Dermatage of Pinthoora.com explained
why he decided to start such ana agency.
"We started this project with a wider
view in mind in order for it to be a tremendous boost to the
profession and to the country at large. I have noticed that a large
number of local advertisements carry images that are foreign by
nature and therefore not suited to the local environment. This is
mainly due to the fact that advertising agencies find it difficult
to find suitable images that are intrinsically local. This is the
reason for the establishment of such a image bank in order to fill
this void in the industry. We are thus creating a platform for
photographers to benefit from such a venture whereby their families
too would finally benefit.
"Initially, we hope to build up a
library of 100, 000 images and by means of advertising and
publicity, promote the pictures to buyers both local and
international through Pinthoora.com.
"A picture is worth a thousand words,
as the old adage goes, is the idea behind the images we wish to
provide the industry, where a total 100% localised trend where this
country’s history, tradition and culture will be portrayed to
reach the public more effectively.
"Our aim is to bring out the talent of
our photographers and add value to the service and industry, through
a high level of creativity in the quality and clarity of the images
on offer, at the same time giving local photographers the
opportunity to make a name for themselves in the process. Pinthoora.com
will maintain its 100 percent local policy."
Any photographer could become a member by
calling over at our office at No. 30/63L, Longden Place, Colombo 7.
Dinesh Karunaratna, director / marketing
director of the company says Pinthoora.com will be a
transparent operation and photographers could submit their images
for sale on the site by registering themselves, after which they
will be issued a photo identity card which will be required when
collecting their payments on the sale of the pictures.
Another great feature is that any member
will be in a position to register his/her images directly onto the
site from the comfort of their homes.
hopes to be the voice for local culture, history, tradition and the
way of life of the Sri Lankan people to both local and international
There’s nothing like a sumptuous meal to
take away the blues, especially when the setting is perfect and you’re
surrounded by friends. Check out Sri Lanka’s top 10 restaurants in
the July/August edition of LIVING, which conducted a
readership survey on ‘favourite restaurants’ recently. From
seafood, through Chinese and Thai to pub grub, there’s a
restaurant out there whatever your flavour may be…
The Lagoon gets top billing with Beach
Wadiya, Flower Drum, The Mango Tree and Cricket Club Café making it
to the top five in that order – while Lavinia Breeze, Royal Thai,
Spoons, The Gallery Café and Siam House occupy the bottom half,
from No. 6 to 10. Useful snippets on each restaurant, accompanied by
mouth-watering images of the fare on offer, will prove irresistible
to many readers.
Blending in well with the cover story is
the usual restaurant review, this month featuring The Havelock Place
Bungalow. The writer is captivated by as much the setting as the
food at the restaurant and claims to have tasted the best home-made
ice cream in the country! In fact, the restaurant earns an ‘Exceptional’
rating of five stars, which LIVING has so far not given out
to many establishments.
Old and the modern
The Fortress on the southern coast is the
five-star property under review in this edition. Per AQUUM’s first
venture in Sri Lanka, The Fortress blends the old and the modern
into the resort, which targets the high-end traveller.
One of the newest nightspots in town –
Tramps – gets a look-in as well and LIVING recommends the
venue for all those who want to party hard! The magazine also
carries a handy guide to restaurants, bars, pubs and nightclubs in
the city. The stylish bimonthly, now known as ‘Sri Lanka’s
Definitive Guide to living’, is packed with features on
entertainment, fashion, hospitality, interior décor, sport,
wildlife, health and much more.
Focusing on luxurious residences, a
pictorial feature by Channa Daswatte and Dominic Sansoni breathes
new life into the interior-décor section of LIVING. A
welcome regular feature, the images of elegant homes, may well
inspire you to redecorate your own domicile.
Familiar faces between the pages in this
issue are Chinthana Vidanage, Tom Moody, Sarala Kariyawasam, Piorina
Fernando and Jackie Fernandez, who models Dharshi Keerthisena’s
On the health-and-fitness front, there is a
useful feature on why you should continue with your exercise routine
and a guide to sensible living to prevent falling victim to disease.
A perspective on how to discipline your kids, with expert views from
across the globe, is also included.
Available on news-stands this week, LIVING
contains useful discount vouchers from hotels, furniture
suppliers, skincare specialists and many more. A good mix of
articles, from entertainment to real estate and wildlife to fitness,
this comprehensive leisure and lifestyle journal is a thoroughly
good read, with many useful directories of essential services.
published by Media Services, the publisher of LMD and THE
LMD 50, and presenter of the weekly business television
The Colombo Centre for Special Education is
a place for rehabilitation and care of the mentally disadvantaged
males. Those who are enrolled at the centre are those with down
syndrome, autism, cerebral palsy and slow learners which have made
them retarded in their mental growth.
This centre is in the process of looking at
the long term needs of these young persons, when those who now care
for them may be unable to do so, with permanent hostel facilities
The centre is a non profit making
organisation and all funds collected are used for centre activities.
At present the centre is funded through voluntary donations from
individuals. The centre has its own respite care facility where the
students can stay overnight.
The centre strives to develop the potential
of the students’ creativity in a relaxed atmosphere. It has been
decided to hold an Art and Craft Exhibition to encourage the
students and to create more awareness among the public. The chief
guest will be Marie Alles Fernando, a renowned artist. The centre is
taking this opportunity to display the range of talents at the
centre as well as create awareness and respect for individuals with
similar needs in society
Items made by the students include greeting
cards — birthday, anniversary, thank you, plain etc., Note pads,
Envelopes, Gift tags, book marks, jute rugs, serviettes, dish
towels, pot holders etc., wrapping paper, woodwork articles, bread
baskets, wall hangings and other articles.
This exhibition will be held at the Lionel
Wendt Art Gallery on July 18, from 9 a.m. to 7 p.m.
recently to a play staged by the young Visakhians at their
auditorium in Colombo. It was the fourth presentation of the Jataka
story Migara during a span of almost 50 years.
It was an emotion filled experience to see
Ms. Karawita who was our deputy principal in the 1950s, Dr. Mrs.
Lalitha Katugaha (nee Wijesuriya) and Kamala Kapilasena (nee
Wadugodapitiya) gracing the occasion as the chief guest and guest of
Going down memory lane it was that affable
pedagogue Ms. Karawita, who almost single handedly created this
great play in 1958. I think most of her lines and lyrics are still
used. This dramatisation also held a special appeal to me as it was
my sister Lalitha, that versatile one time head girl, who played the
lead role as Migara, in the inaugural show.
This in itself was a lavish presentation,
with a large cast, exquisite costumes, impeccable diction and fine
music that blended very well. This was truly a tribute to the
All in all it was one great show. But
special mention must be made of the 14 year old Mudushani
Seneviratne who played Migara and Nethmi Adikari who was Visakha.
They won the hearts of that august gathering and showed a lot of
promise. It is my wish they capitalise on their talents.
My thanks to the producers and the young
actresses, who gave us a most entertaining evening.
Mrs. Manel Panditharatne
Piano: Local Edition
of its rich past and tra-ditional historical assoo ciations, in the
hands of a thinking improviser, the piano has the capability of
being transformed into a musical instrument of the future.
Jazz Piano: Local Edition,
an evening of innovative jazz music presented within a distinctively
Sri Lankan framework, promises to do just that.
Led by pianists Eshantha Peiris, Cumar de
Silva, and Harsha Makalande, this concert will consist of three sets
of tunes mainly composed by the performers themselves. Joining the
pianists in their quest for thought provoking entertainment will be
drummers Sumudi Suraweera, Shiraz Nooramit, Aruna Siriwardhana,
bassists Alston Joachim, Dulip Gnanakan, Upula Madushanka, and
guests including a percussionist and a poet/spoken-word-artist.
Jazz Piano: Local Edition
begins at the Russian Cultural Centre Auditorium on Friday, July 13
at 7p.m. Tickets are available for sale at the venue (open 9