Manhal Issa

Syrian French born in Tartous, Syria, lives and works in Paris
2008 – Master of Arts and New Media, Paris VIII University, Paris, France.
2003 – Graduated with honor from Versailles School of Art, Paris, France.
1996 – Graduate from the Faculty of Fine Arts, University of Damascus, Syria.

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.

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.

2008 – Master of Art and New Media from Paris VIII University, Paris, France
2003 – Bachelor of Art Versailles School of Art, Paris, France
1996 – Graduated from the Faculty of Fine Arts, University of Damascus, Syria.

professional Career
2016-2018 – Art Instructor, Course drawing, painting, living model expression and technique of representation for the LISAA school, Paris
2009-2018 – Art Instructor, Municipal courses for adults, section: drawing, painting, live model expression and technique of representation for the City of Paris.
2015-2018 – Art Instructor, Course for adult drawing, painting, ceramics, Town Hall, from Vitry sur Seine, Paris.

Selected Solo Exhibitions
2019 – “Masks of the Warriors” sculptures at the Lions Club Gallery, Trélazé, France
2019 – “Torn” SV Gallery, Beirut, Lebanon
2018 – “Transgressions” Artistik Gallery, Boulogne, France; “Torn” Galerie Hiba, London
2017 – “Recent Work” Ouberture Ateliers S’Artistes, Bouchemaine, France.
2017 – “Olives” Kaleemat Gallery, Istanbul, Turkey; Solitaire Gallery, Beirut, Lebanon
2015 – “Transgressions” “Transgression” Former stables of Trélazé.

Selected Group Exhibitions
2021 – “Crossing Borders: Artists from the Middle East & the Americas” Scope Art Show, Miami, FL
2020 – “Emerging Art From War-Torn Syria: War & Hope” Curated by Tony Khawam, presented by ArtServe, Miami, FL.
2019 – Oct 9-10 at Florida International Trade & Cultural Expo, Ft Lauderdale Convention Center, Oct 4-6 at Verasoni, Fairfield, NJ; Sept 27-29, Syrian Arts & Culture Center, Brooklyn, NY.
2019 – “Contemporary Art in Syria” Takla Foundation, Bremen, Germany
2019 – Salon de Printemps-Angers, guest of honor, sculpture
2018- “Hope” Former stables of Trélazé – Renceray-Angers Abbey; Spring Fair-Angers;  Salon 49 Regards, Trélazé
2017 – “Memories of Cities” Willesden gallery, London; Art in movement, Nice; Funun festival, Germany- Bremen; Exhibition 49 regards, Trélazé; Bucharest ArtWeek 2017, Bucharest; Gallery “Gil Acrobati” Torino.

2018 – 1st sculpture prize, Lions’ club d’Angers spring show
2011 – video art award at the 1st Izmir Art Biennial, Turkey
2002 – 1st of the painting lion grand prize (Nice national convention), France
2002 – 1st prize at the 9th international horse show in Saumur, France
2001 – 1st prize for painting, spring show of the Lions’ club of Angers, France.

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

Bibliography/Press (selected) (open links with Google Chrome for English translation)
Ma Mairie News, “Issa Opening to The World” The Lions Club of Angers in Trélazé” (Feb 2020); “Meet Manhal Issa” Agendo Culture French Online Art (March 2020); News “by Asaad Arabi “Sculptures Madness” Dec 2019; Almayadeen TV, Metro “Interview with Visual Artist Manhal Issa” (Nov 2018); Lebanon TV, Good Morning Lebanon “Interview with Manhal Issa” (Oct 2018).

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