Sixth Annual IAAC 2009 Erasing Borders Exhibition of Contemporary
Indian Art of the Diaspora

Adil Mansuri

Adil Mansuri Adil Mansuri

Artist Statement

An Endless Journey into Curiosity – Adil Mansuri
Born in 1936 in Ahmedabad, Gujarat, India, Gujarati is both my native language and mother tongue. I later learned Arabic, the language of the Quran, in a local Madrassa. The very same year of my birth, my Father performed the Hajj pilgrimage in Makkah. He was led by a Moallim (teacher), Syed Abdullah Ba'Faqih, who would later play a key role in my journey into curiosity.

In 1947, a country divided and become two and prompted my father's curiosity. The following year, in 1948, he embarked on a direct train to Karachi to discover opportunities in a newly born country. He settled there for 8 years with 10 children – 5 girls and 5 boys. Of those 10, I am the eldest amongst boys.

I began attending school in Karachi and a new language, Urdu, curiously entered my world. In 1952, My father's Moallim, Syed Abdullah Ba'Faqih visited us in Karachi and stayed with us. It was at this time that I would learn Calligraphy from him, and later on begin writing poems, especially Urdu Ghazals Several years later in 1955, having suffered a stroke and heart attack, my father returned to India and struggled to resettle in our native land.

After we returned to India, I continued writing, poems, and now plays – this time in Gujarati. I published several collections, many of which were well received and bestowed several awards. Around the same time, I spent time with Piraji Sagara and became inspired to experiment with art and oil paintings on canvas. This led to solo shows in Jehangir Art Gallery in Mumbai and Sansakar Kendra in Ahmedabad, sponsored by Sarabhai’s Darpan Academy.

1985 brought us new opportunities for curiosity with our migration to the United States. Settled in New Jersey, I participated in shows and poetry recital programs (mushaira) across the United States, Canada, United Kingdom, Middle East, and India.

The technological revolution has established itself as the essence of the the 21st Century. It has also sparked my curiosity, as these days, I engage in creating digital arts, as well as oil on canvas, and writing poetry. I am curious about shapes, colors, forms, light, horizon, time, language, scripts, and everyday I move ahead into curiosity, my endless journey.


1936 Born in Ahmedabad, India
1948 With family relocated in Karachi, Pakistan. Learned Urdu at school in Karachi, started writing poems in Urdu and Gujarati
1952 My father's Hajj Moallim from Mecca, Syed Abdullah Ba'Faqih stayed with us for a few weeks. He ignited interest in Arabic Calligraphy.
1955 Returned to Ahmedabad, India
1972 Solo Show, Sanskar Kendra, Ahmedabad. Sponsored by Darpan Academy
1975 Solo Show. Jehangir Art Gallery, Mumbai
1985 Immigrated to New Jersey, USA Since participated in several Group shows Several books of Poetry and plays published in Urdu & Gujarati Honored with numerous awards for writing over 5 decades Participating in poetry recitation (mushaira) in India, United States, Canada, United Kingdom, and the Middle East. Completed over 4000 Digital art works in calligraphy and abstract expressions.

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