(Written by Ajinkya Kawale)
Siddharth Joshi was a hyperactive child who faced many health complications. His parents, Smita and Bhushan Joshi, introduced him to therapies, which included solving jigsaw puzzles, as a method to improve his attention span. Now 27, an exhibition showcasing his collection of assembled jigsaw puzzles is being held at the Bal Gandharva Ranga Mandir from January 19 to 21. These assembled pieces of jigsaw puzzles at the exhibition include portraits of personalities, pictures of wildlife and abstract art, among other themes.
Writer Achyut Godbole, who inaugurated the event, said, “I would like to congratulate his parents for their efforts to raise him in spite of many challenges,” he added.
While describing their journey, Smita Joshi, who has documented Siddharth’s life in her Marathi book, explained that she experimented with a variety of ways to teach him things. “Asking him to solve these jigsaw puzzles was a part of the therapy. He has a collection of more than 200 puzzles of different sizes, assembled from 1,000-1,200 pieces each. His ability to recognise patterns has developed over the years,” she added.
She said, “Siddharth has found a spot in the Limca Book of Records. Although he works as an assistant teacher at the Zep Rehabilitation Centre, he continues to pursue his passion for these puzzles.” While narrating his experience and passion for jigsaw puzzles, Siddharth said his mind relaxes after solving these puzzles. “It takes a month to assemble a puzzle with 1,000 pieces. My concentration has improved.”
Random pieces of puzzles are arranged at the venue encouraging everyone to assemble them.
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