Autistic schoolboy has artwork entered into competition|
IFIELD, UK: A talented autistic schoolboy is to have his artwork entered into a prestigious competition by his proud mother after she was advised to do so by a professional artist.
Benjamin David, 11, could not speak until he was four and was diagnosed with autism at five. But his mum, Louise Nel, has been amazed at the standard of his artwork and is going to enter it into the Royal Academy of Art competition next year.
Louise, from Langley Lane, Ifield, said: "Ben is a very creative boy and his art has always calmed him down whenever he has struggled to communicate. I have been encouraged to enter it into competitions and take his work along to art galleries by the artist, Mick Bensley."
For the past three years, Mick has visited Desmond Anderson Primary, in Tilgate, and taught a small group of children with special needs. Among this group was Ben, and Mick was so impressed by his ability that he invited him to three workshops, usually only open to adults.
Mick said: "I found it fascinating watching Ben draw and he is very good.He is very independent in his artwork and doesn't want any help. You can tell he enjoys drawing because he never wants to stop for lunch. He is constantly asking me if I was as good as he is at that age and I tell him no."
Louise first noticed her son's talent when he was four. She said: "He drew a picture of the whole of Gatwick Airport in absolute detail and I was astounded by it. When Ben was younger, I would put all of his drawings up on his wall and it inspired him. Ben does not allow his autism to hold him back. He wants to be famous when he is older."
His work is being entered into the Royal Academy of Arts Summer Exhibition, with the best entries being displayed at the academy's home in Burlington House, London.
(Source: ThisisSussex.co.uk, August 8, 2012)