Mani Nagarkar, a 35-year-old Dutch national, became the first foreigner to appear for the state-level intermediate examination for drawing.
The exam was held between September 14 and September 16 and the results will be declared in February 2013.
Nagarkar, who has a special interest in commercial arts and wants to pursue a career in sculpting, said, “I have decided to pursue my career in arts and recently took admission for a four-year degree course in commercial arts. But the college administration told me that I have to clear the state-level intermediate examination for drawing.”
Nagarkar has been residing in the city with her husband and three children since May. “My first visit to India was two years ago during which I visited Agra to see Taj Mahal and other heritage buildings in the city. Now I am planning to visit Ajanta caves. I have heard a lot about Indian art, especially sculptures in India. I am really happy that I got a chance to continue my hobby in India,” Nagarkar said.
Nagarkar appeared for the examination from Vishwakarma Vidyalaya in Bibwewadi. School’s drawing teacher Suneel Borle confirmed that Nagarkar was the first foreign national who appeared for this examination.
“Every year around five lakh students appear for the intermediate exam. But in my last 22 years of service I have never seen a foreigner appearing for this examination,” Borle said. “She is passionate about her career in commercial arts, which is a positive thing. Though our country has rich cultural background, we are neglecting subjects like drawing and singing at school-level itself. On the other hand, Nagarkar is fulfilling her dream.”
Nagarkar said she had initially tried securing admission at JJ School of Arts in Mumbai. “My first preference was JJ School of Arts. But my family resides in the city so I took admission in a city college,” Nagarkar said.