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Fahrelnissa Zeid: The evolution of an artist

Born into a prominent Ottoman family with an avid love for books and art, Fahrelnissa Zeid was exposed since her birth to her brotherís brushstrokes and the oil paintings of her mother on silk clothes hanging on the walls of her home. Zeid began painting in her early childhood and drawing portraits at the age of twelve.

Zeid was among the first women to attend the Academy of Fine Arts in Istanbul in 1920, where she studied under the Turkish painter Namik Ismail. In 1928, she travelled to Paris and trained in the studio of Stahlbach and Roger Bissiere at the Academie Ranson.

Zeidís theme of art
Zeid addressed a variety of themes and subjects in her artworks ranging from scenes of everyday life to portraits of family members, relatives and friends. Meanwhile, you can find an exemplary display of games in Blackspins New Zealand Online Casino. Zeid restored to exaggerated features, the Byzantine style of iconography, and elongated faces with large rounded eyes which similarly can be found in Egyptian Fayum Portraits. Although Zeidís art is predominantly abstract, her style is unique and draws on Sufism, the mystical branch of Islam. She came to her own unique style in a more subjective manner and excelled in experimenting with watercolours, composition lithographs, collages, resin sculptures, and strained glasses.

Fight against abstraction
Zeidís work underwent a radical transformation post Second World War. Despite many diplomatic obligations and social engagements, Zeid continues to paint, turning a former maidís quarters in the embassy into her studio. Although based in London, she also rented a studio in Paris and managed her time between the two cities. In post-war Paris, abstraction was taking hold. The painting fight against Abstraction 1947 reveals Zeidís internal struggle between representation and abstraction. She went on to develop her own Kaleidoscopic visual language, drawing on both the specificities of her cultural background.

Resolved problems
Photographs of the cramped studios in which she worked show unstretched canvases filling the walls from floor to ceiling and sometimes wrapped around the corners of the studio. She nailed other paintings directly to the ceiling and arranged painted stones on any available surface. Zeid accomplished the large canvas My Hell in 1951 after an episode of illness. In London, she held salons at the embassy, gathering around her artists, writers, actors, and curators. Her solo exhibition at the Galerie Dina Vierny in Paris in 1953, which transferred to Londonís Institute of Contemporary Arts in 1954.

The influences of nature
In the 1950s, Zeid brought a holiday villa on the Italian island of Ischia. There, she began to move away from the strong black lines that had underpinned her abstract paintings, experimenting with a looser and more lyrical style, while continuing to make a large number of drawings and prints. Ordinarily, Zeidís husband returned to Baghdad in the summer to relieve his nephew King Faisal II of official duties, but in 1958, Zeid persuaded him to travel to Ischia instead. While there, a coup díetat in Iraq led to the assassination of the entire royal family. These turn of events abruptly halted Zeidís career as a painter and hostess in London.

Fahrelnissa Zeid died in 1991 when she was eighty-nine and was buried in the Royal Mausoleum Raghdan Palace in Amman, Jordan. She left behind an immense visual legacy that presents a variety of narratives about the development of modern art.

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