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Trinidadian Artist, Sirju Mohan –Born to Love Art

POMPANO BEACH – Renowned Artist, Sirju Seeharack Mohan, was born in San Fernando, Trinidad. He attended St. John’s EC School, a primary education institution where he demonstrated superior skills in penmanship and drawing. He later graduated from the San Fernando Technical Institute, where his art expanded and took on new dimensions.

During those years he used commercial house paints on hardboard and depicted scenes from his own life. His focus soon became the composition of objects, the history of architecture and the tropical landscapes of the Caribbean.

As a member of the Southern Art Society, Sirju has participated in four art exhibitions, most notably at the Trinidad National Museum. He cites his father as his primary influence and Ralph Baney, former education art Officer of Trinidad and Tobago, as his mentor. Both encouraged him in his lifelong love for art.

With his deep passion for art, he continued to further his studies at the University of the West Indies and the University of London. He also mastered calligraphy through study in Milan, Italy.

Mohan also received honors from the Stratford Career Institute for his extensive use of all media in art, and he earned a certificate in calligraphy and stone sculpture through the Boca Raton community schools. His favorite medium is oil paint.

Sirju’s works are exhibithed at various museums and art galleries throughout South Florida. Last year he hosted a solo art exhibit at the Doreen Gauthier Library, Lighthouse Point, Florida. Attendees included The Honorable Dr. Anil Ramnanan, Consul General of Trinidad and Tobago in Miami, Ms. Lamar Fisher, Mayor of Pompano Beach, Ms. Charlotte Burrie, Pompano City Commissioner and Mr. Kamal Abdool, President of Trinidad and Tobago Diaspora.

Approximately sixty works from various media, including: oils, pastels, watercolors, acrylics, pen and ink, calligraphy and sculpture were on display. Several examples of portraitures were included. The exhibition lasted one month.
As part of his portraiture genre, Sirju has completed portraits of the Honorable Kamla Persad Bissessar and President Barack Obama of the United States .. One of his masterpiieces is the painting of the ‘Fatel Rozack’ ship in honor of the 165th anniversary of Indian Arrival Day in Trinidad.

Sirju’s art reflects his international travel experiences. He combines the unique, multi-ethnic and multi-cultural mix of Trinidad and Tobago with the artistic expressions of Africa, India, The Middle East, Latin America, Europe and the West Indies. He is currently concentrating on abstract art, noting that, “There is a huge market for the abstract art here in the United States.”.

The average size of his work is 16 inches by 29 inches. He favors a mixed color palette, with an open and free style to create realistic images of the human form, land and seascapes and still life.

Sirju gets satisfaction from any type of art, whether it is drawing, painting, sculpture creative, abstract, realism, surrealism, landscapes, mosaic, portraits or even constructing a building. Because of the proven longevity and the luminosity of the oils medium manifested in most of the works of the great masters over the centuries and the astronomical and incredible prices, he prefers to practice painting with oils on canvas he also works with pen and ink, water, pastels, pencil and acrylics”.

“I was born to love penmanship, drawing, painting, colors and Art, excellent results showed up in all my reports, art grew with me and within me. I believe that it was somewhat genetic as I remember my father had a flair for drawing, doing embroidery and sculpting faces, with mud and clay & making crowns for the Hindu bridegrooms who wore them on their wedding day”, said the Artist.

Although, art is his lifelong passion, Sirju made his livelihood by working as a footwear designer for Bata Shoe Company. When the company closed their Trinidad facility in 1988, Mohan emigrated to Florida.

“ Since my involvement with this subject has been solely for the passion of it , I do it on a daily basis. Soon I will release paintings for the forthcoming Trinidad & Tobago’s Independence, the Pitch Lake at La Brea, Trinidad and a portrait of a renown Trinidadian”.

Sirju keeps a collection of works ready to exhibit at a moments notice and for sudden invitations or requests by charitable organizations desirous of displaying them or for the purpose of simply decorating their events.

Presently, Sirju is in the process of documenting his Artwork with the objective of designing a hard cover publication featuring all of his works in full color together with a biography to create a compact disc for the purpose of airing in the electronic media in his homeland.

He is also preparing to host another Solo exhibition in a few months, venue will be
announced later.

Among his many awards, is an award by the Trinidad & Tobago’s Government on the
50th anniversary of Independence for his outstanding work in the field of Arts.

“The art of Calligraphy in Trinidad & Tobago will diminish if the present trend continues, hence I am contemplating returning to my homeland to help the younger students to continue or revive this wonderful art form”, said Sirju.

Sirju resides with his family in Pompano Beach, Florida and can be contacted at sirjumohan@hotmail.com

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