Manjit Bawa

Born in 1941 , in a small town by the name of Dhuri ,Punjab, Manjit Bawa was brought up in a spiritual environment offering stories of Mahabharata , Ramayana , Purana as well as hymns , poems and rhymes from Sri Guru Granth Sahib Ji . Manjit Bawa studied fine arts at the College of Art, New Delhi between 1958 and 1963 .Although there were many influential and high caliber professors in the institution but Bawa claimed that it was due to Abani Sen asking him to draw 50 sketches everyday which got him skilled up to the brim . It enabled him with techniques learnt over time and also inculcated the habit of working continuously . Between 1964 and 1971, Manjit Bawa worked as a silkscreen printer in Britain, where he also studied art but on his return instead of embracing the European style of painting he became one of the first painters to break out of the dominant grays and browns and opted for more traditionally Indian colors like pinks, reds and violet . Manjit Bawa painted Punjabi folklore legends like Heer-Ranjha as well as stories from Indian mythology consisting of the Mahabharat, the Ramayan, and the Puranas, poetry of Waris Shah, and readings from the holy book of Sikhs – Guru Granth Sahib on the canvas . He was not a man free of controversy . Manjit Bawa was accused of forgery by his assistant.Manjit Bawa lived in Delhi with his wife Sharda Bawa , son ,Ravi bawa and his daughter Bhavana Bawa. Manjit Bawa was in coma for three years after suffering a stroke.He died on 29 December 2008. One of his famous lines that lives with us apart from his rich paintings was ,”I don’t work on demand, but follow my heart and mind, for I feel everything has a time and a place ” .

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