Masks for Mollem

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To give people a chance to showcase their creativity while also creating awareness on the need to save Mollem from destruction, RizVlogs is organising a mask painting/decorating competition called ‘Speaking Through Silence’. NT BUZZ reveals the details

RAMANDEEP KAUR | NT BUZZ

H aving started vlogging about a year ago to try to spread some laughter and joy through platforms like YouTube and Instagram, Rizval Fernandes (RizVlogs) has now taken up a social issue by organising a mask painting/decorating competition called ‘Speaking Through Silence’.

A resident of Agassaiam, Fernandes says that many people are still unaware of the situation in Mollem and through this competition he hopes to bring some awareness towards it. “During this pandemic it is difficult to protest or be present in person but through the power of unity on social media, I think we can make a difference. The competition is called ‘Speaking Through Silence’ as a nod to art as an expression. Our art speaks for us,” he says, adding that there are a lot of people and groups on all social media platforms working really hard for their voices to be heard, trying to save this destruction of the ‘Lungs of Goa’ to make way for three development projects. And through this competition he would like to stand with them.

The idea for the competition, he says, came about when he came across Lifa Silveira’s custom made mask featuring a tiger and titled ‘golden mollem’. “That’s when I thought about turning it into a competition. Right now, everyone wears masks. So if you happen to wear a mask that portrayed the message ‘Save Mollem’, chances are that people will ask about it and that will lead to more people knowing about it,” says the youngster.

The competition is open to everyone. And a student himself, Fernandes who is currently studying at St Xavier’s College, Mapusa says that they have a lot of students entering and it would be great to see other age groups as well. “Anyone who knows about Mollem or wants to speak through their art, young or old, Goan or not, is more than welcome,” he says.

To participate one can pick up a mask and paint it on the theme ‘Save Mollem’ and email the picture of the mask along with the details (Name, Contact Number, Age, and Residence) to [email protected] One could also decorate the mask using sequins, craft paper or embroidery. The last day to submit entries is October 10.

The top three winners will get cash prizes of `2000, `1500 and `1000 respectively. Apart from this there will be a few special surprises. “But the real prize would be to make a difference. Even if you’re not a professional artist, give this a try to make a little difference.”

The participants will be judged by a panel of three judges on creativity, originality, presentation and most importantly accuracy in conveying the message of the theme. The participants work should be original and digital artwork or paper masks will not be accepted.

This is the first time Fernandes has organised a competition like this. And he believes this is a very important issue and we can’t afford to overlook it. “Let’s hope that we will be able to stand up for nature in the future as well. For now let’s pray for a win here and do the little we can to save Mollem.”

(Open to all. Free Entry. The last date to submit entries is October 10. Results will be declared on October 18 at 12 noon on RizVlogs. The entries will be uploaded on the Instagram page ‘mollem.memory.project’)