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Syful Islam - From a Child to the Man of Today

Syful Islam was Born in 12th August 1946 in Meherpur, Kushtia. His father – Mohd. Naimuddin Biswas was a Government service holder. His mother was Rahela Khatun. Both of his parents were very much pious. Syful Islam had two brothers and four sisters, Family gave him a nick name - Hiller which became Hitu later on. Full name Mohd. Syful Islam means Sword of Islam.

Father Naimuddin was also a writer. He wrote several Novels and poetry. These writings were published by Syful Islam in 1993 in Dhaka in the name of ‘Kalsrot’. From his childhood, Syful was very much fond of old classical paintings like Renaissance paintings, Russians and Chinese revolutionary paintings. His most favorite painter is Rembrand and Sculpturist was Henry Moor.

In 1969 Syful reached Dhaka and stayed with his elder cousin Mr. Mohsin ali. Soon he displayed a solo art exhibition in Pakistan Council Hall in Segunbagicha. Justice Moudud inaugurated that exhibition.

Little popularity didn’t help Syful. For his existence in life, He took a job in the then 'Fauji Foundation' as an Assistant Account Staff with a monthly salary of Tk. 225. He started living in a 3 seated mess room is Arambag. At that time he drew a portrait of Prince Karim Aga Khan for his Dhaka office. On the 26th March Morning 1971, when Liberation war broke out he took shelter in his generous friend Mr. Mortuza’s at his residence in Gopibag.

Soon he was doing many Banglobandhu’s portrait. His Fauji Foundation office was not happy with this and they transferred him to their Ghorasal office. After that Syful quit the job and became a free lance painter. Syful was in all processions & public meetings of Awami League during the period.

In 1972 he shifted his living place from Gopibag to Gulshan in Mrs. Dr. Shaheed Samsuzzaha’s house. With his initiative they started the 1st private big art gallery in Gulshan named Desh Art Gallery with other two partners - Mr. Yusuf Saeed & Mr. Shamsher Azad Chowdhury. Mr. Mizanur Rahman Chowdhury the then information minister inaugurated the Gallery 1972. It lasted for 2 years This Gallery gave Syful a sufficient fame and popularly in the town. At that time He used to paint Bangobandhu Seikh Mujibur Rahman in all most every paintings - For the President, For Awami League office, For Gonobhaban, For Bangobhaban. In 1973 after closing Desh Art Gallery, he shifted from Gulshan to college Street, Dhanmondi in one rented room which was quite sufficient for his work and living too.

In 1974 he again organized one solo art exhibition in Dhaka art College Hall. Barrister Amirul Islam inaugurated that exhibition. In the same year the then Malaysian Ambassador Mr. Ali Bin Abdullah became his friend and send him to Kualalumpur for 3 months. he did many Portraits and paintings there - He painted Tunku Abdur Ramna’s Portrait too. Coming back from Kualalampur he again started doing painting in Dhaka.

In 1975 opposing education ministry and foreign ministry’s approvals- Bangobandhu Seikh Mujibur Rahman as President sent him to Moscow USSR with his special fellowship for portrait painting training. While in Moscow he felt home sick and returned Dhaka in 1796 and started new life again.

He got married in 1975 April 21st, in with a Urdu Speaking family girl name Shahnaj Parveen, her mother was from Kashmir and father was from Bombay at Kushtia. Just after marriage syful joined in a Foreign Bank named BCCI as an account assistant, veteran banker Mr. Nooruddin Ahmed offered him this job. Only after two years Syful didn’t like Banking life. He left the office permanently and started his own art Gallery cum Art school at Banani in 1981 – named after his first son’s nick name ‘Cezanne’.

At present he is vigorously working with paint and Brush regularly and creating hundreds of creative all types of oil paintings and ink drawings.




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