27 February 2024
I Was Born a Poet...
Part of Alserkal Art Week
Starts 6:00 pm
Venue Volte Art Projects
First solo exhibition of artist Manjit Bawa
(1941-2008) - an Indian figurative, Modernist master in Indian art. Showcasing a seminal body of
work after over a decade in its entirety.
About Manjit Bawa
A modernist master of the figurative genre, Manjit Bawa was one of the few artists who took figuration right from the outset. His focus was always on the expressive nature of painting; the simplicity of line and form was always contrasted by the subtle graduation of color and the artist's use of chiaroscuro.
Born on July 30, 1941 in Dhuri, Punjab, India. He draws inspiration from India’s perennial spirit,
music, literature and poetry. He always felt that beneath his country’s cosmetic changes, India
remained in many ways unchanged. Music in particular, has always been a connected facet to his
life, from the tabla he played while his wife Sharada was learning the Sitar, to the Pahari love songs
he plays on the bamboo flute at his cherished studio at Dalhousie. Manjit’s childhood memories
remain, the Himachali shepherd as he saw him in his travels across the state, the cows, bulls, goats
which are an integral part of the Indian metropolis, and now of his works. His subjects were often also inspired by icons and myths which represent the dual polarities of the human and animal
world; although they share the same environment they 'occupy separate mental universes'. That
visual reference and the recollection of it remains on the periphery of his subconscious and through
his work, he questions the dynamics of these relationships, and how one communicates with the