Manhal Issa_bwBorn – Tartous, Syria and now lives and works in Paris
2003 – Graduated from the Faculty of Fine Arts, University of Damascus, Syria
2008 – Master of Fine Arts from Paris Eight University

 

Tracks on Mount Qasioun No.3 – mixed media on canvas, 40 x 40 in, 2019

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Tracks on Mount Qasioun No.2 – mixed media on canvas, 40 x 40 in, 2019

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Tracks on Mount Qasioun No.1 – mixed media on canvas, 40 x 40 in, 2019

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Without Borders – mixed media on canvas, 158 x 90 in, 2012

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The Story – mixed media on canvas, 36 x 36 in, 2014

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Conversation – acrylic on canvas, 40 x 40 in, 2014

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Dancing Figures – acrylic on canvas, 40 x 40 in, 2004

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ARTIST STATEMENT

Manhal Issa was born in Tartous, Syria and now lives and works in Paris. He’s a painter, sculptor and digital video artist who arrived in France in 2000 and became a naturalized French citizen in 2008. His work is influenced by the abstract expressionism by revisiting the myths and mysteries of his Syrian culture and adopted French lifestyle. His style became more gestural representation after the start of the Syrian war which influenced his recent work by using mixed media and runs with a car tire over his painting to emphasize on aggressive gestural human behavior that ran over his mother country.

“Perhaps my work is about the invisible; maybe about elusive things such as light, seduction, freedom, anger and joy” Mr. Issa said. The most recent work is about the savagery of humans that left a deep scar and influenced the way he portrays the horror that fell on his city and people in the urban areas particularly in the coastal area of North West of Syria where he’s from. His medium became more aggressive to express his anger about the invasion of the innocence of a child and the political hypocrisy.

The influence of the war is evident in his paintings which swings between demolition and construction, between the beauty and the act of smearing the surface of his canvases. Mr. Issa recalls his impression of how he can conduct during the process of creating a painting, either as a criminal or as a victim; it swings between the possible and the impossible. He acknowledges the new change that swept his mother land, the swing between the nostalgia of his native country and the lifestyle and culture of the country where he is currently residing are constantly on his mind and reflected in his work.

Education
2003 – Graduated from the Faculty of Fine Arts, University of Damascus, Syria
2008 – Master of Fine Arts from Paris Eight University

Professional Career
2010-Present – Visual Arts instructor and lecturer at Visual Arts Center in Paris and Angers, France

Solo Exhibitions in Syria
2004 – Atassi Gallery, Damascus
2005 – Ishtar Gallery, Damascus
2006 – Damascus Gallery – Damascus

2006 – The Levant Gallery, Aleppo

2007 – Gallery Alsayed, Damascus, Emar Gallery – Lattakia

2008 – Cultural Center, Lattakia

Group Exhibitions

2015 – “Damascus Diaries” – “Orient House”, Amman – Jordan

2015 – Selected works by Nizar Sabour – Hallbienne 4 Hanover – Germany

2016 – “Al-Kalamoon” Exhibition “Mark Hashim” Hall Beirut – Lebanon

2017 – Exhibition (Icon Damascene) – hall “sv” Beirut – Lebanon

2015 – Kaleemat Gallery, Istanbul Marmara Muze

2016 – Cappadocia Museum

2016 – Quzah Gallery, Damascus

Awards

2011 – Won the 1st prize in paintings at the Lion’s Club spring fair in Angers, France
2000-2007 – Several awards from the Ministry of Culture in Syria and other French prizes.

Collections
Manhal Issa’s work are in museums and private collections around the Middle East, Russia, Europe and U.S.A.