Passion for art rekindled | Geelong Independent

Jasmine Bizhani, an optometry student at Grovedale, rediscovered her childhood love for art at the Bluebird Foundation after fleeing Iran with her family at the age of 12.

The 19-year-old recalled government officials interrogating her mother and jailing her father before her family migrated to Indonesia, where they spent four years in a camp while awaiting Australian visas.

“My mother wanted to become a Christian, but she couldn’t in Iran,” she said.

“You must be a Muslim, otherwise you will go to jail. “

As a child, she loved to play music and act, but was “limited” to this also under the Iranian regime, due to the fact that she was a girl.

She feared that she had lost her love of art between the years, until she began painting with her mother during Victoria’s first lockdown.

Then a social worker put her in touch with the art programs of the Bluebird Foundation in South Geelong.

“After a while I was like ‘let’s try it’ and absolutely loved it!” she said.

“I had no idea I was really good at this! “

In May 2021, she and other attendees enlarged one of her larger-than-life works, pictured, after showing the artwork to Bluebird resident artist Cam Plapp.

“He was like, ‘I think we should paint this on the garage door,’” she said.

“It was time to relax, have fun and spend some time spray painting.”

But the COVID-19 pandemic has hit the Bluebird Foundation hard financially, and now the group is appealing for donations for its Propeller Project, to help children and youth like Jasmine.

To donate: bluebirdfoundationinc.org.au

About Pamela Boon

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