Those who are left handed, may feel awkward or embarrassed while moving in the society or face problems in handling equipment, but it is also found that left handed people are smarter than the right handed ones. At Big Foot in Loutolim, Maendra and Maureen Alvares have given the lefties the respect they deserve
Indeed, it’s an unusual creative collage of Mahatma Gandhi at Big Foot, Loutolim. Celebrating 150 years of the birth anniversary of the father of nation, Mohandas Karamchand Gandhi, a creative collage measuring 30x15 feet combining 4203 left handers’ hand prints from across the world over has been created here as a result of year-long programme initiated by Maendra and Maureen Alvares to commemorate the fact that Gandhi was ambidextrous who had the ability to use both the right and left hand equally well. Gandhi developed the ability to write with left hand, so that he did not have to be dependent only on his right hand, it is said.
So considering the fact that Gandhi was a lefty, or that he could use his left hand too, the concept was adopted at Big Foot where the Alvares couple initiated a drive to collect hand prints from the visitors to the museum Ancestral Goa a year ago, on October 2, 2018. The collage will remain open to the public till October 13 from 9 am to 1 pm and 2-6 pm at Big Foot Tiatr Hall of Fame, Loutolim.
Why did the Alvares think of this concept about having something for left handers? Maendra shares, “The idea of a museum is generally an establishment archiving memorabilia. This museum is a total anomaly in the simple fact that it dedicates itself to the highlighting of a removal of the social stigma of being left-handed. I strongly believe that such an edifice has brought about awareness, in the simplest way, that it is normal to be left-handed. But in the implementation of the displays of the great personalities, left-handed individuals look upon their orientation with honour. I feel a great deal of satisfaction in having a ‘hand’ towards this effort.”
Maendra’s idea of taking hand-prints was to carry a step further this concept. “My contributors came from all walks of life and from all over the world. But, I must admit to starting small as I had no idea of how far I could go and the first prints were those of my staff. What we ended up with is 4203 imprints. It was an artistic treasure trove for me. I decided to honour India’s greatest: Mahatma Gandhi, who is said to be a left-hander himself, with a pictorial eulogy and created a collage of the Mahatma’s profile with the hand-prints,” says Maendra.
There were visitors of all ages, who were thrilled to have their hand prints on the Khadi cloth and displayed forever at the Big Foot. Many lauded Maendra’s initiative and efforts. “It’s a great effort that the Alvares couple has put in getting 4203 left hand prints in a year, from the people visiting from all over world and making such a fantastic piece of art,” feels Kabir Kumar. A left-hander Shreyansh V shares, “As a left hander, I feel honoured to be a part of this awesome art work of Gandhiji.” Sanjay Sheth quips, “This is an innovative way of bringing people together with their hand prints on one piece of art and the efforts of the Alvares couple need appreciation.” A Solanki was motivated by the display and admitted that he, now can face the world after seeing Gandhiji’s profile and lot of other left handers.
The life isn’t easy for left handed people. The world doesn’t accept them easily. There are stigmas attached to left-handedness. The people who are lefties, have trouble in coping up with the normal, simple things as the cars, desks, tools, machineries and equipment, all are manufactured for the right handed people. Research is going on and as more scientific explanations come up, the bias approach of the society is soon diminishing and people who are left-handers are getting respect.