Youssef Abdelki, a Syrian artist born in Qamishli, began as a cartoonist in 1966, with drawings published in children's books and magazines, before moving on to fine art.
His first individual exhibition was in 1973 in Damascus. The British Museum in London, the Museum of the Arab World Institute in Paris, the Digne-Les-Bains Museum in France, the Kuwait National Museum and Oman Modern Art museum all have his work in their collections.
Abdelki is today considered one of the most famous Arab sculptors, as well as one of the most prominent graphic artists. Many of his studies regarding Arab caricatures have also been published and acclaimed.
“I do not choose to use to black and white as a specific technique, but rather as a tool that to open up tragic windows,” said Abdelki.
The chopped head of a fish, with its wide open eye, along with empty mugs and pots, a woman’s pair of shoes, and shadows of worn out wood are but a few manifestations of Abdelki’s realm of art. All are depicted only in black and white.
Since his early childhood, Abdelki’s life has been overshadowed by a series of misfortunes that have been aggravated by his political leanings.
“By virtue of affiliation to the Syrian Communist Party, my father was arrested 12 times in the 40s and 50s … I engaged myself in politics to swim with the tide,” the artist said.
His experience behind bars brought to his paintings indelible expressions of protest against his prison guards.
“The situation changed from outcry to exercising freedom, which deformed the image of prison guards. It is a watershed in my career that liberated me from fear,” Abdelki added.
To read more and view Youssef Abdelki’s art please follow the link: http://enawafeth.alarabiya.net/content/artist-engages-himself-politics