• Christies auction house James Christie logo

    Sale 7674

    International Modern and Contemporary Art

    30 October 2008, Jumeirah Emirates Towers Hotel

  • Lot 142

    Louay Kayyali (Syrian, 1934-1978)

    Maaloula

    Price Realised  

    Louay Kayyali (Syrian, 1934-1978)
    Maaloula
    signed and dated in Arabic (lower left)
    oil on board
    29½ x 35in (75 x 89.cm)
    Painted in 1972


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    The village of Maaloula is located 56 kilometres to the northeast of Damascus and built into the rugged mountainside, at an altitude of more than 1500 metres. The village has a population of just 2000, which belies its historical and spiritual significance. Maaloula, from the Aramaic word ma'la meaning "entrance", is the only place where the western dialect of Aramaic, the language of Jesus Christ, is still spoken.
    Since its establishment in the 1960s, part of the curriculum of the Faculty of Fine Arts at Damascus Univeristy has been mandatory field visits to draw and paint in Maaloula, a practice that continues until this day. Since Fateh Moudaress and Louay Kayyali both taught at the university for many years, it would explain why they both chose this mystical place many times as a subject for their paintings, over a long time period and in different media and different styles.

    Saleroom Notice

    This lot was sourced in the UAE and if bought by a UAE resident is duty exempt.