".... He is an institution
when you think of his engineering alone - he holds a master's
degree in electrical engineering, an author of three engineering texts which are taught at the
universities, president of a busy engineering firm whose work has reached from the sky scrapers of USA to
sport centers of Japan to the palaces of the princes of Saudi Arabia. Yet he finds time to be an artist. He is
an accomplished cartoonist whose panels are published in international magazines, an honored artist
of multi-media whose work received Critics' Award, an award-winning music director, and
internationally acclaimed animator & animation film producer - shining brilliantly in
each field . Welcome to Manick Sorcar's magic !"
An electrical engineering graduate from Banaras Hindu University, P.C."Manick" Sorcar came to the USA in 1970, got a scholarship and earned a master's degree from the University of Washington, Seattle. A resident of Colorado, Manick is the president of Butterweck-Sorcar Engineering Inc., an electrical engineering firm, which he and his partner started in 1974. An expert in energy-saving lighting design,he has authored several texts on the subject. One of his publications, Rapid Lighting Design and Cost Estimating, 1979, was selected as the Book of the Month. Over the past two decades, his innovative lighting design has reached several countries through projects such as the Palace for Prince Faisal Bin Sultan in Saudi Arabia, Shinurayasu and Tobu Sports Center in Japan, and Denver International Airport, USA.
Manick inherited his love for art and music from his legendary sorcerer-father, P.C.Sorcar. On many occassions as a youngster,he helped painting the backdrops, composing music and doing lighting at magic shows. In the USA, these vocations flourished side by side his professional demand.
Over the last two decades Manick has produced a wide variety of unique arts, appealing equally to people of all ages. At several exhibitions, his paintings have displayed rural India and ganut of its expressions. The first such exhibition was held in Seattle, Washington. Then a university student, Manick felt deeply for East Pakistan refugees who poured into India from the war-torn nation. He has captured the spirit of rural India and its art in water colours and acrylic.....
Manick's latest creations is a gallery of portraits of famous people with newspaper pieces which were displayed at an exhibition titled, Images of India:Transformations/Animations. Organized at Foothills Art Center, Golden, Colorado, the exhibition included a series of selected original artworks from his award-winning animation, Deepa & Rupa: A Fairy Tale From India.
The monthlong exhibition proved to be a successful show, drawing large crowds and receiving rave reviews. The Denver Post and Rocky Mountain News, two leading newspapers of Colorado with decades-old rivalry, marked Manick's theshow for the Critic's Choice - a selection made out of 211 artists who displayed in 96 galleries. In its Art Show Pick, The Denver Post selected and published two of Manick's portraits, Mother Teresa and Denver Mayor Wellington Webb, both uniquely created with newspaper pieces. Noting the absolute uniqueness of the medium, the Daily Transcript wrote: "Taking on a sleight of hand few would attempt, the artist has created portraits of newsmakers using a most unique medium - newspapers!" The Denver Post gushed: "There aren't many of us (journalists) who would confuse newspaper clippings with art, unless those clippings end up in the hands of artist, animator and lighting designer Manick Sorcar; then they become portraits of Mahatma Gandhi, John F. Kennedy, or even Denver Mayor Wellington Webb!" The portrait of Mahatma Gandhi, entitled "Our Gandhi", was a special attraction; it was made with newspaper pieces of all languages of India that has a script. The portrait of Mother Teresa with a child was made with Bengali newspaper pieces of Calcutta, honouring the anniversary of her Charity Order, founded in Calcutta 50 years ago.
The art show comprised 40 selected pieces of Manick's work which included rural scenes in water colour and acrylic, paintings of the homeless on bricks and bamboo trays, of newsmakers with newspaper pieces and original work from the scenes of his animations.
The show proved specially interesting for youngsters; in an adjacent room, a large TV screen showed, without cease, his three animation films: "Deepa & Rupa: A Fairy Tale From India", "The Sage & The Mouse", and "Sniff", which had won top awards at the International Film Festivals of Chicago and New York.
Manick is also an accomplished cartoonist as well. He contributes cartoons to several newspapers around the world and has two books of cartoons to his credit. Called The Melting Pot: Indians in America and Spices in the Melting Pot, they deal with the lifestyle of Asian Indians trying to assimilate with the U.S. mainstream.
But his most notable artwork came in the past six years. These are a series of one-man animated videos for children: "East Meets West I and II" (1986 and 1987), "Two Songs From the East" (1987), "Deepa & Rupa: A Fairy Tale From India" (1990), "The Sage and the Mouse" (1993), and "Sniff (Gandhabichar)" (1993). Entertaining and educational at the same time, they promote cross-cultural values and innivative arts. In many of these videos, he had deftly mixed hand-drawn art with computer-generated art and animation. He has scored the music himself, replete with the Indian spirit. The creations were instantly acclaimed as a "bridge between the East and the West" and was lapped up by schols and the press while bagging a host of international awards....
Since its premiere on the PBS Channel (KRMA-TV, Denver) on September 13, 1990, "Deepa & Rupa" was telecast in many parts of the world and received key awards, including The Gold Plaque at the Chicago International Fim Festival, The Golden Eagle by the Council on International Non-Theatrical Events (CINE), Washington, D.C., the Silver and Bronze Medals at the New York International Film and TV Festival, the Cindy Award, Los Angeles, and nominations in three categories for The Heartland Regional Emmy Awards.
The schools found his videos to be "an invaluable material. Not only was it a popular fairy tale for young children, it had educational values for high school students studying the many uses of computers as wel", said the Aurora Public Schools. Manick started getting a surge of requests from schools to make presentations of his art-videos and discuss the state-of-the-art technology on computer graphics and animation with students...
The chain of success continued in his last two productions, "The Sage & The Mouse" and "Gandhabichar" which are fully animation videos and took two years to make. The two were premiered on the PBS television station of Denver on July 1 and re-telecast on July 14, 1993, the Independence Day of the USA. They received sensational response, again from viewers and rave reviews from the press.... "The Sage & the Mouse", which is based on a fable from the Panchatantra, received the Gold Medal for its music and the Silver Medal for its animation at the New York International Film Festival, and the Bronze Plaque at the Columbus International Film Festival. "Gandhabichar" (Sniff), which is based on Sukumar Ray's famous nonsense poem, was awarded the Golden Eagle by the Council on International Nontheatrical Events, Wshington, D.C.....
Taking another story from the Panchatantra, Manick Sorcar, at present, is working on his latest production, "The Woodcutter's Daughter", which he hopes to release in January, 1997. Produced in English, this half-hour animation is skilfully woven with live action.
A busy professional, how does he find time to work for children?
"Creating miracles is my birthright," he says with a smile, "during the day I'm an engineer, at night I'm an animator. I'm a Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde except that I really need Mr. Hyde's work to make it through another day as Jekyll. Hyde charges my batteries." But isn't it tiring? "It is so fulfilling that there is no time to feel tired. Animation is the best medium to attract and communicate with children of any age - it has no language barrier! Through this nedium I can take the children to India and teach them our culture. Can anything be more fulfilling than that?"
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Excerpts from INDIA TODAY, (India), February 15, 1997:
Magic, Movies, Medals - An Engineer by profession, he roams imaginary worlds, not just on canvas, but on video and computer as well
He doesn't exactly pull rabbits out of a hat, but his sleight of hand is worthy of a magician. His tools: a magnifying glass and a paint-brush with just two fine hair which he uses as a paintbrush. Give him a peanut and he'll give you a portrait of the most famous peanut farmer - Jimmy Carter-on its surface. The smaller his canvas, the more he rises to the challenge: Richard Nixon on a penny and Abraham Lincoln on a grain of Rice. In his hands, old newspapers turn into dramatic portraits of Mahatma Gandhi and John F. Kennedy.
Meet P. C. Manick Sorcar, engineer-magician
of Denver, Colorado, son of the late P.C. Sorcar, India's legendary magician.
During the day Sorcar is president of an electrical engineering firm that
has done lighting projects for Denver International Airport, Tobu Sports Center
in Japan, and the palace for Prince Faisal Bin Sultan in Saudi Arabia. By
night he creates imaginary worlds, not only on canvas but also on videos and
the computers.....Sorcar has done a series of one-man animated videos for
children,mixing his hand-drawn art with computer-generated art and animation,
along with original music to showcase Indian culture. What started as efforts
to introduce his two young daughters to their heritage has evolved into award-winning
films.....Sorcar is proof that prosaic electrical engineers who write tomes
about lighting design and cost estimating can also be magicians at heart.
Manick with Richard B. Long, president of Columbus International Film Festival, where he received the Bronze Plaque for "The Sage and The Mouse"
P.C " Manick " Sorcar
Engineer, Artist and Magician