India’s most controversial artist, Maqbool Fida Husain turns 94 on Thursday.
And while he may be in exile, the Indian literati has decided celebrate the event.
Sahmat — the Safdar Hashmi Memorial Trust is holding a “Saalgirah Mubarak” titled “FOR HUSAIN AT 94” in association with the outreach programme of Jamia Millia Islamia. The event would include an exhibition of over 100 artworks made by eminent and emerging artists and art students at the MF Husain Gallery in Jamia.
Through the day, Husain’s films would be screened including Gajagamini (2000), Meenaxi: A Tale of Three Cities (2004), and Through the Eyes of a Painter (1966). Filmmaker K Bikram Singh will be delivering a lecture on Husain’s work while the vice-chancellor of Jamia Millia Islamia, Najeeb Jung, will release Singh’s book on the artist. The evening is scheduled to end with an iftaar outside the MF Husain gallery.
“The programme is both a tribute and a celebration of the work and life of Husain from artists and a reminder to Husain that in spite of attempts to denigrate his art and his forced exile, the creative community holds him in the highest regard,” a Sahmat statement said on Wednesday.
Husain has been in exile since 2006, and shuttles between Dubai and London.