Bashir Mirza graduated from the National College of Arts, Lahore in 1962 and, with the offer of a job of designer by the Pakistan Security Printing Corporation, made his way to Karachi. The first solo exhibition of his work took place in 1963, at the residence of the Nigerian Ambassador.
BM, as he was known, opened the first commercial art gallery in the country on Kuchery Road, Karachi, in 1965. It became a central meeting place for artists and many lively evenings took place discussing art. Though sales of paintings could not support the gallery, BM ran a monthly news letter and collected ads, and he printed a portfolio containing prints of eight beautiful drawings titled `Portrait of Pakistan’ that sold in literally hundreds and for years.
BM was very popular with the media, he was outspoken and candid, and everything he did was recorded in the press. In 1967 he went to Europe for two years, and from that experience emerged the renowned `Lonely Girl’ series of painting.
In 1971, BM returned to Karachi and opened his own Ad Agency and art gallery. During the years of Marshall Law, BM did not exhibit his work, but in 1989 he exhibited a series of 10ft by 5ft paintings, of his heroes `Dawn of Democracy’.
In 1994 he was awarded the Presidents Pride of Performance and that year became Pakistan’s first Cultural Attaché, posted to Sidney, Australia. He returned in 1996, and began his last poignant series expressing his fears for the environment with a beautiful series titled: `Save the Margallas.’