An artist with no art training, not even from his father the famous Maqsood Ali, Mansur Aye managed to make his mark on the world of fine art with his tranquil works of art. The whole country was saddened by losing such a remarkable artist in 2008. However, he is still alive in our hearts and through his exceptional artworks, which people have been cherishing since. One of the few artists who accepted modern art with wide open arms and promoted it in Pakistan, Mansur Aye has a place in the art world like no other.
Mansur Aye held shows for over 40 years. His first exhibition was held at the Karachi Arts Council in 1962, in a two-artist exhibition shared with Jamil Naqsh. In the same year, he created a name for himself in the art world when he won a prize in the Karachi artists exhibition. Two years later, he gained national recognition by winning the third prize in the National Painting Exhibition of Lahore where the president of Pakistan, Ayub Khan, honored him by presenting the prize to him personally. After this moment of recognition, he remained active in the art scene by creating tremendous art pieces for the rest of his life.
Mansur Aye experimented with diverse subjects over the years, but he became famous for his moon-faced girls in different guises and sizes. The spontaneity in his brush strokes was a perfect tool to reflect the emotions of peace and shyness on these faces. The application of interesting color combinations, with a domination of gestural delineations, added a layer of complexity to the work, showing the moods and gestures of the girls with extreme finesse. The girls were often accompanied by additional elements like the moon, a bird, a flower, or a flute to add an atmosphere of even more serenity to his work. This distinctive signature work shows the strength of the artist’s inventiveness and chromatic sensitivity. In fact, the moon-faced girls became such a signature of his that there wasn't even a need for him to actually sign his name.
Mansur Aye excelled in his artistic versatility in various mediums, including pencil, paints, chemicals, watercolors, acrylics, oil paints, and mix media. He also worked with compositions containing still life objects, male musicians, as well as nudes.