Photo of the Month

Jessica Shane finds art in the unexpected

Jessica Shane was in New Delhi, India, when she snapped this photo of a child lying still amidst a bustling playground. The image was taken at one of the city’s 71 Katha schools, which are run by a non-profit organization that encourages literacy and the love of reading across India. The school was located in the heart of a slum, says Shane.

“When I saw this child lying on the floor unattended, the reality of low staffing in the school suddenly hit me,” she says. “These children have become quite accustomed to being independent. In this environment, it is almost a necessity.”

The energetic movement of the other children contrasts with the stark stillness of the child. This scene, says Shane, felt relevant to the way the school functioned.

Now a second-year student at Victoria College, Shane is pursuing a degree in visual studies. She finds the beauty of art is its spontaneity and its ability to gauge emotional responses through visual stimuli. “I like to draw portraits with little poems for strangers on the subway,” she says. “I give the artwork to the subject right before I hop off the train – it’s so much fun.”

Jessica Shane’s “Schoolyard” won the W.J. Dowkes Award at the 90th Annual Exhibition of Photography at Hart House

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