He has no formal training in the art of painting. He is partially colorblind and differentiates colors through shades of gray. He uses house paint and acrylic on 2'x2' board.
The writings on his paintings are in Greek, Latin, Aramaic, Hebrew, Arabic, Amharic, Sanskirt, Pali, Burmese, and several other languages.
He has painted more than 250 religious folk art paintings since his retirement. He has given away many of his paintings as gifts to friends, churches, temples, and museums.
Some of his paintings have been sold at the Slotin Folk Art Auction in Buford, Georgia, which is considered to be one of the largest folk art events in the United States.
Dr. Gyi's pseudonym as a folk artist is "MONJI". His website is monjifolkart.com.
He taught Psychology of Language and Communication, Signs, Symbols and Language Systems, and other related courses at the College of Communication for more than thirty years. He was known as a professor who reads, writes, and speaks 12 languages.
At Ohio University, he received several honors including the Outstanding University Professor Award in 1973 and 1981. He also served as a Visiting Scholar at Harvard University and The Johns Hopkins University in 1982 and 1983.
He retired from Ohio University in 1995. He and his wife, Patricia, moved to Georgia in 2005 to be close to their grandchildren.
Dr. Gyi has served as the Chief Instructor of The American Bando Association in the United States for the last 50+ years.