1920 - 1990




Artist Profile


He was born in Bombay, Maharashtra. He was born of Ismaili Khoja parents, originally from Gujarat. 1935 He came to madras at the age of fifteen, and was groomed for the confectionery business which his father had embarked upon. 1954 Member of Progressive Painters` Association, Madras. 1963 Member of the Indian Delegation to the First All- Asia Art Exhb. and Conference, Nepal. 1967 Member of Artists Handicrafts Association, Madras. 1968 The Foreign Office of the Federal Republic of Germany sent him on a sight seeing tour of West Germany. 1969 He joined K.C.S. Paniker at the Cholamandal Artists` Village, Madras. 1970-77 Vice Presedent, Artists Handicrafts Association, Madras. 1977-80 President, Artists Handicrafts Association, Madras. Travelled in England, sponsored by the British Council, London. Also visited Paris and other centres to see important Museums and Galleries. 1970-90 He was a freelance painter.


1939-45 Studied at Govt. College of Arts & Crafts, Madras, earning a first class Diploma in Painting. 1946 Learnt Textile Designing at Govt. Textile Institute, Madras. 1947 Diploma in Photography- Linghams Institute of Photography.


  • 1946 Solo exhb. at Hindi Prachar Sabha, Madras.
  • 1949 Solo exhb. at Theosophical Society, Madanapalle, Andhra Pradesh.
  • 1956 Contemporary Indian Art Exhb. to Romania, Hungary, Bulgaria, Czechoslovakia and U.S.S.R., Govt. of India, New Delhi.
  • 1956-89 Participated in all the National Exhb. of Art, Lalit Kala Akademi, New Delhi.
  • 1957 First South East Asian Exhb., Manila, Philippines.
  • 1959 Indian Contemporary Art Exhb., Villa Hugel, West Germany.
  • 1960 Exhb. of Contemporary Indian Painting to U.A.E., Lalit Kala Akademi, New Delhi.
  • 1961 Indian Art Exhb. to Latin America, Govt. of India, New Delhi.
  • 1962 Participated in the First International Exhb. of Fine Arts, Saigon.
  • 1962 Exhb.`Commonwealth Art Today`, Commonwealth Institute, London, U.K.
  • 1962 Indian Art Today to Bulgaria, AIFACS, New Delhi.
  • 1964 Solo exhb. of drawings, Triveni Gallery, New Delhi.
  • 1964 Solo exhb. of drawings, Gallery Chemould, Bombay.
  • 1965 Ten Contemporary Indian Painters,


National Gallery of Modern Art, New Delhi. Lalit Kala Academi, New Delhi. Ford Foundation, New Delhi. Air India, Bombay. Panjab Museum, Chandigarh. Andhera Pradesh State Museum, Hyderabad. Bharat Kala Bhavan, Varanasi. National Art Gallery, Madras. Indian International Centre, New Delhi. Birla Academy of Art and Culture, Calcutta. USIS, New Delhi. Raj Bhavan, Ahmedabad. Massachussets Institute of Technology, Massachussets, U.S.A. Brandeis University, U.S.A. Berlin Museum of Indian Art, Germany. Commonwealth Institute, Sydney, Australia. Masanori Fukoka and Glenbarra Meseum, Hemeji, Japan. Institute of Papua New Guinea Studies, Papua New Guinea Royal Tropical Museum, Holland. The Asia and Pacific Museum, Poland. Delhi Art Gallery, New Delhi.


1945 Award for painting `The Divine Light`, Fine Arts Exhibition, Madras. 1947 Awarded Scholarship for studying textile-designing course at Government Textile Institute Madras. 1953 Award for painting `Struggle`, All India Swadeshi Exhibition, Madras. 1956 Award for painting `Winter night`, Academy of Fine Arts, Amritsar. 1957 Award for painting Shilpa Kala Parishad, Patna. 1958 Punjab Govt. Silver Medal, Academy of Fine Arts, Amritsar. 1963 President of India`s Silver Plaque`, for best painting `Sea Life` at the 33rd Annual Art Exhb. of AIFACS, New Delhi. 1966 National Award (for drawing), Lalit Kala Akademi, New Delhi. 1976 Special Award of Honour, Karnataka, Chitrakala Parishad, Bangalore. 1978 National Award (for painting) Lalit Kala Akademi, New Delhi. 1985 Silver plaque presented by AIFACS, for contribution to Art at the `2nd Veteran Artists Exhibition`, New Delhi. 1986 Conferred Fellowship of the Tamil Nadu Oviam Nankalai Kuzhu (Tamil Nadu State Lalit Kala)


His pictorial language is basically symbolic, which was markedly influenced by his direct experience of tribal life and culture. No wonder his art had so much spontaneity and purity in it. Creatures and Forces of Nature assume anthromorphic forms, symbol of powers, both earthly and magical. The complexity of meaning is also reflected in the corresponding complexity of technique. He developed a very elaborate way of representing space: figures are superimposed on figures, colours merge into each other, forming misty and defused effect, which could be read as a mass of detail.


1947-48 Senior Instructor, Painting Dept., Govt. College of Art and Craft, Madras. 1951-54 Art Instructor, The Rishi Valley School, Madanapalle, Andhera Pradesh. 1954-69 Exhb. Officer, Lalit Kala Akademi, New Delhi.