As it is widely known, true versatility knows no limitation. People search for the will and skill to be excellent at their most priced passions, and still win at life in whatever career they choose. More often than not, that is not the case. One of the few who have beaten the odds and shown that one man really can wear several hats without compromising efficiency is Dr Sanjeev Handique, a radiology expert, a painter, and a cyclist; a true Jack of all trades, and indeed, master of all.
Social media over time has evolved and now acts as a wider platform for everyone to gain name and fame; Dr Sanjeev has recently become a sensation for his surreal artwork that has themes of childhood nostalgia and a deeper message.
Dr Handique works as the director at the radiology and imaging department of GNRC Hospital, in Guwahati. He is a doctor who specialises in MRI and CT scanning. Dr Handique has a wealth of experience in the medical field that so many can only wish for. With over 27 years of experience, he is an authority in his field, with several research papers published in national and international journals to his credit.
Apart from exhibiting great medical acumen, Dr Handique has always been in touch with his creative and artistic side ever since he was a child. “I’ve always had a knack for painting and drawing from early in my childhood,” he says.
“My drawings used to be a source of amusement to my uncle and his friends. My uncle used to tell the story of one particular instance where I was asked to draw a moving car, which I did, I even added the dog by the window,” he added with a grin.
Growing up in the small town of Digboi, in Upper Assam, Dr Handique explored several things and soon enough, he found out he was good at painting and drawing. He notes: “I was pretty good and in no time a lot of my uncles became my patrons.”
Little Handique’s uncles were delighted with his work and often gave him special requests. They would give him different pictures to paint or draw and by doing that, he improved his skill. Although some of these relatives are no longer alive, these precious paintings have been preserved by the families. Dr Handique says, “My mother, who also loves my paintings, saved some from when I was a child.”
Dr Handique started out with oil painting and developed into a master in that medium of art. It wasn’t until 20 years ago, he began his journey with watercolour for the first time. He finds this particular medium of painting to be challenging and beautiful.
Dr Handique’s medical career became overwhelming and soon covered up every other area of his life, including his art. In addition, he began a family and his center focus became catering for them. Drawing and painting eventually drifted away with the passage of time. It wasn’t until a couple of years ago when his wife had to be taken to Mumbai for medical reasons that he rediscovered his passion for art. He soon discovered an art shop in the Four Bungalows area in Mumbai, filled with attractive resources, that once again peaked his interest in watercolour painting.
Most artists require inspiration to paint. Dr Handique says that the major inspiration for him to paint is the people and buildings all around Guwahati and Assam. All over the world, during this lockdown, people are picking up new interests and equipping themselves with self knowledge. Dr Handique isn’t left out either; he highlights how the lockdown has given him extra time to pursue his passions and do more of his hobbies.
“For example,” he says, “I have always been passionate about cycling, for various reasons. Although, before the lockdown, the frequency of my rides was, I still ride once in a while. I am also passionate about gardening and during this period, I engaged in gardening more because of all this extra time I have. Pursuing a hobby is great for stress relief and it provides happiness,” he adds.
Currently, Dr Handique is only into watercolour painting, although he previously used to paint in oil. He also is into 3-dimensional representations of various car models which he displays on his social media profiles.
Speaking on how he selects his muse, Dr Handique says, he takes inspiration from lifestyles around him. “I take note of people and how they do little things. I also like to paint the urban environment around me. I try to ensure people can recognise the area I paint, by just looking at the painting. I also like to capture bits of the Assam heritage, like the type of wooden bridge and houses,” he notes with a smile.
Dr Handique gets great support from his family. He tells us his wife has been amazing, always encouraging his passions. He is also grateful to his mother who has been there for him ever since the first flames sparked off. His children have also been a solid support system as his biggest cheerleaders.
As a person, 57-year-old Dr Handique continues to find fulfillment with every passing day. He has been a blessing to the world through his prowess in medicine and the arts.
Follow his works @sanjeevhandique