Artisans and cancer survivors come together for a unique initiative, headed by the Apollo Cancer Centre (ACC), New Delhi. ArtCan recently launched by ACC is a medium that uses art to spread awareness about breast cancer. With the help of Kerala Mural arts, this initiative brings forth 8 steps of SBE or self breast examination ways that encourage women in the early detection and prevention of breast cancer.
Art transcends all languages, borders and barriers and is an excellent platform to convey a message. ArtCan uses art created on a ‘can’vas for awareness about ‘can’cer. The ArtCan project has 8 murals that portray women performing self breast examination. The visual artistic SBE explanation is accompanied by stories of breast cancer survivors in the book – Chitrasutra.
Chitrasutra is thus, ArtCan’s most interesting and earnest attempt at making women aware of the SBE methods, along with the poetic prose and stories of real women who survived this disease due to early examination, detection and treatment.
Breast cancer is globally the most diagnosed cancer. 25% of cancer cases across the world are breast cancer cases, however, early detection can lead to 90% survival rate or more. Every 1 in 8 women are affected by breast cancer and thus it is important to raise awareness about the warning signs and self examination methods to prevent women from losing lives. Early steps are the key in survival for breast cancer and ArtCan through Chitrasutra hopes to encourage, guide and inspire women to face cancer and beat it.
Also, breast cancer is caused due to several factors, including lifestyle and environmental changes, anomalies in aging, as well as, it is genetically inherited too.
Chitrasutra is a wonderful collection of 8 murals that visually and artistically depict the 8 self examination ways to detect breast cancer symptoms. With an attached prose and the story of a breast cancer survivor, each mural is a succinct, yet passionately honest endeavor to touch the lives of the people, especially women reading it. In simple steps it explains to women the basic self examining steps to undertake on a regular basis. Besides, the stories of women cancer survivors help identify and acknowledge these real heroes who fought the disease with courage and strength.
Life imitates art and ArtCan hopes to use the power of art to spread awareness about breast cancer. SBE and mammography at regular intervals is the best way to detect and protect oneself against this disease. Finally, as a line from Chitrasutra sums it all up – “From care to cure, we need to progress in this direction, then only you can win over cancer.”