"In my next life, I would like to be a butterfly." So begins this simple video montage depicting the paintings and dreams of young students at two informal schools in India run by the non-governmental organization Calcutta Rescue. Calcutta Rescue provides free education to nearly 300 slum children in that city and here, the impetus behind the lush series of water-color paintings on display is voiced by the artists themselves. "I imagined standing by a river like this. I have never seen a river, but I have seen pictures," says one. And another: "I live on the street with my parents, brother and one sister. I would like to have a big house so that we can all live there."

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  • Francoise Herzog-Shapiro

    What inspired you about this video?MY OWN WEB PAGE HERZOG FAUVE.COM ALL MY WORK.

  • FRancoise Herzog-Shapiro

    I M AN ARTIST.I LOVE ALL THE WONDERFUL DRAWINGS FULL OF LIVE AND DREAM FROM THOSES KIDS... THE WATERCOLOUR ARE WONDERFUL AND SO REALIST...I WICH TO A BUTTERFLY IS SO TRUE...AND SO TOUCHING.MY HOPE IS TO COME TO CALCUTTA AND BE THEIR OWN ART TEACHER...I MET JACK PREGER 20 YEARS AGO,TO BE AN ART TEACHER,BUT I WAS TOO YOUNG AND NOT READY.KNOW I AM READY TO BE WITH THEM AT LAST...THAT S MY ONLY DREAM...LIKE THOSES CUTES KIDS.BRAVO FRANCOISE HERZOG SHAPIRO HOPE TO SEE YOU IN CALCUTTA.SEND MY REGARDS TO JACK PREGER PS I M THE BEST FRIEND OF TYFFANY TAVERNIER.WHO CAME TO CALCUTTA.

  • Michael Turner

    Wonderful paintings, wonderful work Kolcutta Rescue... www.learningspacefoundation.in/

  • Anita Bhatty

    Stupendous work!! I shared this video with my art students, and they were more than inspired! Thank you.

  • Christie

    Thank you for the inspiration! christiefarley.typepad.com

  • Raquel Perkes

    The intelligence of these young minds shines so brightly in these absolutely remarkable paintings.

  • choclet pi

    Wonderful paintings. those are my favourite kind of paintings..full of joy and colours. I wish I could paint that well but I'm too old now! What important work these people are doing. I think education and literacy for ALL will be one of the things to save the human race and the planet.

  • Ruth benjamin

    Painting is very theraputic and as an artist I know the joy of painting. The children's paintings are full of joy, hope and colors sparkle. Keep up the wonderful work and help them heal.

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  • Learn more about Calcutta Rescue, which operates the two informal schools shown in this video.
  • Check out Kids with Cameras, another promising initiative that grew out of working with children in Calcutta, and harnesses the power of art to transform the lives of both artist and viewer.
  • "Every child born," wrote the poet Tagore, "brings with it the hope that God is not yet disappointed with man."  Remember this, and honor the potential in all children.

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