• International Modern & Contemp auction at Christies

    Sale 7804

    International Modern & Contemporary Art

    27 October 2009, Jumeirah Emirates Towers Hotel

  • Lot 140

    Nazir Nabaa (Syrian, b. 1941)

    The Garden

    Price Realised  


    Nazir Nabaa (Syrian, b. 1941)
    The Garden
    signed in Arabic and dated '1989' (lower left); signed and titled in Arabic, and dated '1989' (on the reverse)
    oil on canvas
    30¾ x 25¼in. (78 x 64cm.)
    Painted in 1989

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    Nazir Nabaa's work is inspired mainly by literary works of Near Eastern folklore, mythologies from pre-Islamic times, popular songs and poetry, such as the Mu'allaqat (The Hanging Poems). His depictions of women are a recurrent theme in his work, representing qualities such as Beauty, Fertility and feminine power, and evoke deities from ancient mythology such as Ashtar, or Abla.
    The present work, representative of his figural paintings from the 1980s, is softer than his earlier styles, combining as it does themes from the ancient Near East with a style much influenced by the Pre-Raphaelite paintings of 19th century England. Like Nabaa, the world evoked by the Pre-Raphaelites was a semi-mythical past pre-dating written history.

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