Marking the 94th birth anniversary of master artist SM Sultan, a daylong commemorative programme was held at Shishu Swarga auditorium at Masimdia village in Narail yesterday.
Sultan Foundation and the district administration jointly organised the event.The programme included Quran Kwnani, Doa Mehfil, placing wreaths at the grave of the late artist, discussion and art competition for children. SM Sultan Bengal Charukala College also placed wreaths on the grave of the master.
But, no programme organised by any government institutes in Dhaka or even by the faculty of fine arts of Dhaka University.
Sheikh Mohammed Sultan, best known as SM Sultan, was born into a poor family at Masimdia village under the district on August 10 in 1923. His father Sheikh Messer Ali was a mason by profession.
Sultan’s formal schooling began at Narail Victoria Collegiate School where he studied five years. Then he joined his father as an assistant in masonry.
Being greatly influenced by his father’s work in building houses, he started drawing and painting during his leisure.
Sultan left the art college after completing three years of his six years course as he felt travelling attracted him more than the formal education in 1943.A lifelong bachelor, Sultan settled him down in an abandoned building in Narail besides the turbulent river Chitra where he lived forever with an adopted family and pets. He also built a mini zoo there.
In recognition of his contributions, Sultan was conferred on some prestigious awards like the Ekushey Padak, Charushilpi Sangsad Sammanana and Swadhinata Padak. The Cambridge University in UK also declared him as the ‘Man of Asia’, a prestigious honour to him in 1984. SM sultan breathed his last at Jessore Combined Military Hospital after suffering from a prolonged breathing illness on October 10 in 1994.