Following My Paint Brush

by Dulari Devi and Gita Wolf

Dulari Devi worked as a cleaning lady for an artist in India. After watching the... read more

Dulari Devi worked as a cleaning lady for an artist in India. After watching the artist painting, she went home to find “my hands were itching to make something beautiful too.” With no paper or paints, Devi used the mud outside her home to make a bird. She was so thrilled that she found the courage to ask the artist if she could learn to paint. “She said ... yes!” Devi began by learning how to hold a paintbrush and draw a line, and went on to master the “rules of painting” in order to create her own original works. “I couldn’t imagine a single day without painting. It was part of my life.” Devi has gone on to become one of a small number of women artists who have adapted the Mithila style of Indian art, which draws on traditional and Shamanic designs, to depict contemporary themes. Here, an engaging, first-person narrative is accompanied by Devi’s intricate paintings depicting scenes from her life. There is a pleasing sense of color and balance, not to mention a spirited playfulness, in Devi’s distinctive work. “My way of telling stories is through painting, so I’ve painted my story for you here.” (Ages 8–12)

© Cooperative Children's Book Center, Univ. of Wisconsin - Madison, 2012

show less