Nov 26, 2009

Mario Miranda's Mumbai

Mario Miranda is a native of Goa, but he spent time working in Mumbai and capturing city's spirit. He depicted citizens of the city as bug-eyed cosmopolitan community suffering under lazy, ignorant, and self absorbed politicians. He packed people very closely with traffic, shops, and stray dogs. Policeman with protruding tummy and chicken legs, crying babies, pickpocket - the whole Mumbai on a page for you. Then there was a buxom secretary Miss Fonseca, office clerk Godbole (Marathi Manoos) who was bullied by his boss, and a film actress Rajni Nimbupani. They all shared the potholed roads - just like the Mumbai we know.

Mario does not have a formal training in art, but his natural talent saw him freelancing as a cartoonist and illustrator while he was an undergraduate in St. Xavier's College, Mumbai. He got his first break with The Illustrated Weekly of India when it printed few of his cartoons. Then came the rejection when The Times of India rejected his work the first time. However, the paper began to give him assignments a year later. In 1959, he went to Lisbon, and was awarded the Gulbentuan Scholarship. He worked in London for a couple of years, even washing dishes to tide over tough times. After that was a stint in the US, working with Charles Shultz, of ‘Peanuts'. Then it was back to India, sketching for The Times and its sister publications.

He received Padmabhushan in 2002.

More from Mario Miranda.... Still more Mario Miranda.