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Biography of the Artist

Shriniwas Balkrishnan (Shriniwas b. Agawane) is a Marathi Indian painter, designer, illustrator, and essentially a writer who takes interest in writing for children. You will find the bifurcation of his work as per these labels on the website.

His life journey so far…

He spent 15 years of his childhood in the world-famous Dharavi slums. Yet he had an inborn instinctive aloofness that insulated him from the adverse effects of the notorious environ . A part of the credit of this insulation goes to the school where he learned which encouraged him as a child to have a different perspective towards art, and also to his parents who gave him the freedom of imagination, his extraordinary friends, his siblings and also to the enchanting world of Cartoons and cinematic characters.

In most of his childhood memories are locked the glimpses of Urban lifestyle along with the various non-urban places which he used to visit during his school vacations. As a result of these childhood imprints, one can co-relate or find these features in most of the illustration work in his books.

When he was in junior college, he got a huge opportunity as a cartoonist through a publicity department. Thereafter he graduated in first-class from the prestigious ( and a bit snobbish ) J.J School of Arts in Mumbai.

The journey of understanding the basic fundamentals of any painting had now culminated into an attraction for the subtlety of minimal paintings. The experience collected so far was displayed into a solo Gallery sponsored exhibition.

He later shifted to the suburbs of the main Mumbai city which changed his vision towards painting.

“Humans adjusting to the rapid changes forced by globalization” became the theme subject of a series of his illustrations.

Further in his professional journey, he had to work as a visual merchandiser. But being a visionary dreamer at heart, perceiving an ordinary job just to keep the home fires burning was not his cup of tea.
Hence he decided to work as an art teacher in a residential International school located in the scenic laps of Dharamshala in Himachal Pradesh. He worked there for a year tutoring the students hailing from all corners of not only India, but also from the world. There he felt a need to drastically change the rigid pattern in which art education was given to students and this urge gave birth to the book. ‘” I hate colouring books “.

This was a dual language ( English and Marathi ) and an interactive book published in Mumbai.
The parents of budding artists liked it a lot for its stand out quality and creative content. Since then he has been working as an illustrator and designer. He has worked for Scholastic publications, Rajhans publications, and Hindustan Publications for various books commissioned so far.

The next series of ‘ I hate coloring books’ will be soon published. ‘ Dhoomgolu Pahila on ?’, ( Who is first ? )
Gutterfutter, Lockdown Lion ‘ are a few more informative and illustrative picture books which will be published soon in the near future. These books will focus on the factual situation happening around the globe.
‘Goshta eka dhotraaachi, oh majhi cycle, Susu, bhuta’ these are a few imaginative and comic cartoon books.

‘Cartoon shikaychay malaa ‘ ( I want to learn drawing cartoons ) this is another informative book.

All these books are on the verge of getting published and he is like an eagerly expectant mother awaiting the joy of delivery.

To understand as well as to attract the viewer’s attention towards the political and environmental issues, he has initiated installation sculptures/structures

The political viewpoints of Shriniwas are neutral till today and so the cartoons posted on social media platforms are for the sake of or from the viewpoint of a vigilant citizen.

He fully believes that many students not only from rustic-provincial rural areas but also from impoverished backgrounds in urban areas get very few opportunities to express their views or thoughts. Whereas many schools strictly enforce their students to stick to the old rigid patterns of thought processes and parrot learning which is just wrapped in the new coating.
As a solution to this imprisoning torture, he has started a trust called ‘Chitrapatang Samuh’ which encourages and gives free rein to the most out of the box artistic views. One can view this on

This trust provides art-camps for students, workshops for adults, and giving art syllabus to schools.

To date, he keeps writing his observations in the form of articles in newspapers, and magazines for kids regularly. ‘Cartoon Gaathaa , Jiv chitra’ these are a few well-appreciated jobs done so far.
Also, presentation on visual Arts is regularly conducted in Art Colleges and through Educational workshops.

So that’s the tale of this meandering river so far. The ocean is still eons away.

श्रीनिवास बाळकृष्णन (श्रीनिवास बा. आगवणे) ची व्यावसायिक ओळख म्हणजे मराठी चित्रकार, कला मार्गदर्शक, डिझायनर, इलस्ट्रेटर आणि विशेषतः लहान मुलांसाठीचा लेखक अशी आहे. याच लेबलानुसार आत्तापर्यंतच्या कामाचं वर्गीकरण या वेबसाईटवर दिसेल.

बालपणातील १५ वर्ष धारावीत, तिथल्या समस्यांचा थेट परिणाम त्यांच्यावर पडला नाही. त्याच क्रेडिट कलेला प्रोत्साहन देणारी शाळा, स्वातंत्र्य देणारे पालक, टोकाचा वेगळेपणा असणारे मित्र, भावंडं आणि सुंदर कार्टून-सिनेमातलं विश्व याला जातं. त्यात शहरात राहून, सुट्टीत विविध ठिकाणी जाऊन येऊन असल्याने बालपण गेल्याने अनेक परिसर त्यांच्या चित्रपुस्तकात येतात.

ज्युनियर कॉलेजमध्ये असताना पब्लिसिटी डिपार्टमेंटमध्ये त्यांच्यातील कार्टुनिस्टला एक मोठी संधी मिळाली. त्यांनतर जे जे स्कुल ऑफ फाईन आर्ट मधून पदवी शिक्षण प्रथम श्रेणीत पूर्ण केले. चित्रांच्या मूलभूत घटकांना समजून घेण्याची ओढ शेवटच्या वर्षापर्यंत मिनीमल स्वरूपातल्या चित्रांपर्यंत पोहचलेली. त्या दृश्यानुभवाचे गॅलरी स्पॉन्सर सोलो प्रदर्शन झाले. मूळ शहरातून दूरवर (आडबाजूला) शिफ्ट झाल्याने त्यांचा चित्रविषय बदलला. ‘जागतिक बदलाच्या रेट्याला सामावून घेणारी माणसे’ हा चित्रमालिकेचा विषय झाला.

पुढे व्हिजुयल मरचंडायजर म्हणून नोकरी करणं भाग पडलं. परन्तु निरस कामातून पैसे कमावणे हा पिंड नसल्याने ही नोकरी तात्काळ सोडत हिमाचल प्रदेशातील परदेशी विद्यार्थ्यानी भरलेल्या रेसिडेंसियल शाळेत कला शिक्षकाची वर्षभराची नोकरी केली. तिथं कलाशिक्षणाच्या प्रक्रियेत बदल करण्याची गरज वाटू लागली. यातून पहिल्या पुस्तकाचा जन्म झाला. ‘आय हेट कलरिंग बुक’ हे द्विभाषीक व इंटरकटिव्ह पुस्तक मुंबईत प्रकाशित केलं. पालकांना त्यातला वेगळेपणा आवडला. मग तेंव्हापासून आजपर्यंत इलस्ट्रेटर, डिझायनर म्हणून काम करत आहेत. स्कॉलास्टीकसाठी, राजहंससाठी, हिंदुस्थान प्रकाशनासाठी अनेक पुस्तकं इलस्ट्रेट डिझाजन केली आहेत.

आय हेट कलरिंग बुक याचीच पुढली सिरीज लवकरच प्रकाशित होणार आहे. धुमगोलू, पहिलं कोण?, गटरफटर, लॉकडाऊन सिंह ही चित्रपुस्तके वाचकांना जागतिक वास्तवता हाताळायला देणारी आहेत.

गोष्ट एका धोतरची, ओह- माझी सायकल, सुसू , भूतं ही काल्पनिक व विनोदी अंगाने जाणारी पुस्तके आहेत. ‘कार्टून शिकायचं मला’ हे महितीपुस्तक, ही सर्व पुस्तके प्रकाशनाच्या वाटेवर आहेत.

राजकीय किंवा पर्यावरण समस्यांकडे लक्ष वेधण्यासाठी मोठी मांडणीशिल्प (इन्स्टॉलेशन) केली आहेत. श्रीनिवास यांची राजकीय मतं आजवर तटस्थ राहिली असून सोशल मीडियावर होणारी राजकीय कार्टून ही दक्ष नागरिकांच्या चष्म्यातून असतात. त्यामुळे डिजिटल मीडियाद्वारे ती प्रकाशित होतात.

खेड्यापाड्यातील, शहरातील गरीब मुलं अनेकांगाने पिचलेली मुलांमध्ये नवा विचार करण्याच्या- मांडण्याच्या फार कमी संधी उपलब्ध असतात. याची जाणीव त्यांना होती. बऱ्याच शाळा सरधोपट पद्धतीने नवा म्हणून जुनाच विचार मुलांना करायला देतात. यावर उत्तर म्हणून ‘चित्रपतंग समूह’ ही कलाशिक्षण देणारी ट्रस्ट त्यांनी सुरू केली. इथं त्याची माहिती पाहू शकता.

मुलांसाठी कलाशिबिर, मोठ्यांसाठी कार्यशाळा, शाळांसाठी कलाअभ्यासक्रम या माध्यमातून दिला जातो. वर्तमानपत्रातून, मुलांसाठीच्या मासिकातून नियमित लेखन चालू असते. कार्टून गाथा, जीवचित्र ही त्यांची उल्लेखनीय वार्षिक सदरं आहेत. अनेक आर्ट कॉलेजात, शैक्षणिक कार्यक्रमात कलाविषयक प्रेझेंटेशन करतात.