Mani Kaul was born as Rabindranath Kaul in a native of Kashmir family. He is a nephew of Hindi film director Mahesh Kaul ( 1911-1972 ). In 1963, he earned a college degree at the University of Rajasthan in Jaipur. Then he studied until 1966 at the Film and Television Institute of India ( FTII ), Pune initially spectacle, but then moved into the directing course, Ritwik Ghatak was where one of his teachers. Mid-1960s, he appeared in several student films of the Film Institute; In 1969 he played in Basu Chatterjee's directorial debut, Sara Akash.
His first feature film directed by a series of short films and documentaries in 1969 was Uski Roti, the adaptation of a short story by the author Mohan Rakesh Hindi. Kaul broke through with Uski Roti the usual standards of the Indian film with respect to narrative structure, sound design and composition. He brought the mainstream press against him, but won the approval of the intellectual film criticism. The film marks the beginning of a long collaboration with cinematographer KK Mahajan, whom he knew from the film school here. It marks an important contribution to the movement of the New Indian Cinema of the 1970s. At the Berlinale 1971 Mani Kaul was a member of the jury.
His second feature film Ashad Ka Ek Din (1971 ) is the film adaptation of a play by Mohan Rakesh about the Sanskrit poet Kalidasa and explores the possibilities of innovative camera work continues. Kaul's first color film Duvidha (1973 ) depicts a woman fate from a short story by Vijaydan Detha and was also listed several times in Europe. Since the mid- 1970s, Mani Kaul worked in addition to his film work as a university teacher at the FTII. For his documentary Historical Sketch of Indian Women (1975 ), which was created during the time of emergency legislation under Indira Gandhi, he refused to accept the authorship after he was forced to amend the commentary and some of the settings.
Ghashiram Kotwal (1977 ) on a play by Vijay Tendulkar turns Kaul jointly with directors K. Hariharan, Kamal Swaroop and Saeed Akhtar Mirza. Beginning and end of the movie quote Glauber Rocha's Antonio das Mortes from the year 1969. Due to legal disputes with the financing bank of Ghashiram Kotwal came after its premiere in January 1977 in Madras took two years to late for another theatrical release.
In the 1980s, the fictional shares occurred in Kaul's feature films back in favor of stronger poetic and documentary elements. After his film SATAH Se Uthata Admi (1980 ) about the author Gajanan Madhav Muktibodh ( 1917-1969 ), Kaul began to be interested in Dhrupad music of North Indian classical music. In 1982 he portrayed in the film Dhrupad Zia Mohiuddin Dagar musicians ( Rudra Veena ) and Zia Fariduddin Dagar (vocal) in search of the artistic core and origin of Dhrupad. Mati Manas ( 1984) is an episodic film about the tradition of terracotta sculptures and pottery in India. The film draws parallels between Harappa based on legends and Mesopotamia. With his portrait of Thumri singer of Benares Gharana Siddheshwari Devi (1903-1977) returned Kaul back to classical music. The Division of the film produced movie Siddheshwari won a National Film Award for Best Documentary. He also used archive footage of the only television appearance of the singer towards the end of the trailing with actors life story of the singer. With the Dostoevsky adaptations Nazar (1989) and Idiot ( 1991) Kaul returned back to fictional subjects.
Its sophisticated theory of contemporary aesthetic practice with the title lakes from Nowhere was presented in the seminar Inner space, outer space, the cultural historian Kapila Vatsyayan at the Indira Gandhi National Centre for the Arts and the Book of Concepts of Space: Ancient and Modern published. In the 2000s, he also had teaching assignments in the U.S. and the Netherlands.
Mani Kaul died of cancer on July 6, 2011 in his home in Gurgaon near Delhi.