Ahmedabad, April 1: A taxi driver in Ahmedabad who lost his source of livelihood during the Gujarat riots, has today reinvented himself as an artist of some repute.
Surviving as an unknown tourist taxi driver, Munnavvar Hussein,46, used to sketch monuments during his idle time.
He used stippling art, a technique of using small dots to simulate varying degrees of solidity or shading.
But after riots, he was left with no work and took to sketching seriously.
With about 30 sketches of different monuments and figurative sketches Hussein put up his first exhibition. It attracted a lot of public attention that ultimately added to his self-confidence.
He has never looked back since then.
"During my taxi driving days, I used to get a lot of opportunities to visit different places, mostly monuments, along with the tourists. While the tourists used to do their work, I used to do sketching. I was ignorant of the art I was doing," said Munavvar Hussein, riot victim and stippling artist.
"Ater riots, the inflow of tourists decreased. I didn't have any job and faced survival problem. I had some 31 sketches mostly of mosques at that time. My first exhibition saw my entire work of about 31 paintings purchased by one Dharmendrabhai Patel. It encouraged me tremendously," he added.
Today, Hussein has over a hundred of such eye-catching photo realistic pictures. He has sketched both Hindu and Muslim monuments like Sarkhej Roza, Champaner-Pavaghadh, Khajurao and Modhera Sun temple.
Hussein's family has also gained popularity due to his new vocation.
"Today my father has moved forward successfully. Everyday his paintings are being sent to France. I pray to almighty that he keeps progressing in his vocation," said Aiman, Hussein's daughter.
Hussein is presently sketching a Surat Dutch Cemetery for last 20 days. Shortly, his work will be displayed in Netherlands. By Ami Sharma