Artist Hajra Mansoor studied on a Scholarship from Lacknow Art College in 1962 and graduated from the Lucknow Art College in 1964, Hajra and her sister Rabia Zberi shifted to Karachi. They were together known as Zuberi Sisters, she opened the first art school in Karachi named Karachi School of Art. Hajra married the distinguished contemporary painter, Mansoor Rahi in 1969 who became the Principle at Karachi School of Art.
She organized Karachi School of Arts in Karachi and researched in creative synthesis of painting and entered in the evolution of periodical phases in life time work. She has proven her mantle in different styles Academic Realism, Classism, Oriental Intuitionism, Oriental formalism and Neo Romantism.
Hajra is one of the most sought after artists in Pakistan and her style is inspired by tradition combined together with modern artistic sensibilities.
Hajra Mansoor's Paintings:
Hajra Mansoor’s art work has delighted audiences in Pakistan and Worldwide. Her themes are linked to the romance of an olden age inspired by traditional schools of Mughul Miniature art. Hajra created a unique genre by introducing experimental nuances into the work with contemporary media techniques, rhythmic flow of her brush strokes and decorative elements rendered in a transparent luminosity, hold a universal appeal.
Hajra Mansoor does not use models for her paintings, She derives her inspirations from Asian ideals of beauty and focuses on promoting and enhancing them by exaggerating the features like big, colored eyes, very clear skin with a tinge of pink and delicate lips along with articulating hand gestures.
Some of the women in the paintings are seen beautifying themselves, just as if they are expecting a loved one. The figures are seen combing their hair, holding a kohl (surma) box or putting their jewelry on, Others are painted with different birds like pigeons or peacocks, as if sharing their secrets of love with them.
Hajra regularly exhibit her solo exhibitions every year since 1963. She has held exhibitions in all corners of the world places like Bangladesh, India, China, Japan, Turkey, Iran, France, England, Germany, HongKong, Tokyo, Mumbai and America. She shifted to Islamabad and is currently working in her own studio with her husband, running her own gallery and museum. The wife and husband duo have worked towards developing a culture of artists and art appreciation in the city. Instead of confiding her talent in her own self she is busy in introducing new phases and techniques to the young generations in the spirit of promoting art in Pakistan.
Over the years, it has grown into a major art institution which has produced many well-known artists of the country.
Recognitions and Government Awards:
- Hajra is the recipient of the National 1969 Chughtai Award Chughtai Award in the All Pakistan National Exhibition sponsored by the Pakistan National Council of Arts PNCA.
- Then in 1982, she got the First prize in HaidarAwards, conducted by Abasin Arts Council, NWFP.
- President’s Pride of Performance In year 2009. she has been declared "Safeer-e-Mashriq" of Pakistan.