Armless Artist’s Incredible Paintings

Armless Artist’s Incredible Paintings


COMM: Forty-two-year-old Swapna Augustine was born without arms, but has found acclaim
as an artist, painting impressive pictures with her feet. She has exhibited and sold
her work in India and abroad, and has won a number of accolades, most recently an Aadhi
Aabadi Women Achievers Award in 2015. COMM: Before Swapna was born, her father Augustine dreamt that his wife Sophie would give birth
to a baby without arms who would go on to bring glory to the family’s name. When she
was born three months later, her parents named her Swapna, which means “dream” in their
native tongue Malayalam. COMM: Even as a child, Swapna was fiercely independent, and aged 4 she started kindergarten
and soon learnt to write the alphabet in sand using her feet. She continued her education,
and after graduating from St Joseph’s College for Women in Kerala, joined the Mouth and
Foot Painting Artists Association, an international society for disabled artists. She trained
with an art teacher for 2 years, and now Swapna regularly takes part in artistic workshops
with physically disabled students when she is not producing her own paintings. Over the
next few years, Swapna aims to create an autobiographical painting, telling her inspiring life story.

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