Gulam Mohammed Sheikh
Award Name : Padma Bhushan
Year of Award : 2014
Award for : Arts
Location : Surendranagar, Gujarāt, India
Gulam Mohammed Sheikh is an internationally renowned painter, writer and art critic. He was awarded the prestigious Padmashri award in 1983 and Padmabhushan in 2014 for his contribution to art. He was born in 1937 in Surendranagar, Gujarat, India. He studied painting at Faculty of Fine Arts, Baroda and Royal College of Art, London. He took Baroda's wounds as his own and narrated them in his works. "Sheikh's art is by its nature," writes Chaitanya Sambrani, "one that takes on task of narrating, and therefore, recreating the world. There is a close tie-in between this narrative and an act of mapping the world, which gives to the speaking subject the possibility of addressing the world as his/her own". Recently Sheikh had been working on the Mappa Mundi series where he defines new horizons and ponders over to locate himself in. Sheikh construes these personal universes enthused from the miniature shrines where he urges the audience to exercise the freedom to build up their Mappa Mundi. His deep understanding of literary tradition especially Sufism enables him to create visual couplets in his works.
Sheikh has been instrumental in initiating and theorizing the Narrative-Figurative tendency in contemporary art. His early work may be seen to be occupied with an investigation of the subliminal reaches of human existence. His work from the 1960s and 1970s can be seen to be informed with a consciousness of the surreal in the seemingly mundane.