Mahmoud Hammad (Syrian, 1923-1988)
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Mahmoud Hammad (Syrian, 1923-1988)

Salamon Kawlan Min Rabin Raheem (Peace, a Word from a Merciful God)

Details
Mahmoud Hammad (Syrian, 1923-1988)
Salamon Kawlan Min Rabin Raheem (Peace, a Word from a Merciful God)
signed in Arabic, signed and dated 'HAMMAD 86' (lower right)
oil on canvas
29 ½ x 59in. (75 x 150cm.)
Painted in 1986
Provenance
The Artist's Estate.
Exhibited
Damascus, National Museum, Centre of Arab Culture, Annual Exhibition of Plastic Arts, 1986.
Special notice

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Lot Essay

Salamon Kawlan Min Rabin Raheem, reflects Hammad’s shift into the final and most acclaimed period of his career – the Abstract period – where he depicted abstract compositions that revealed an extraordinary balance between form and colour, achieving an aesthetic maturity in which Arab script and letters became the main element, derived in a Modernist style. By arranging the letters throughout the surface of the work in a modern style, Hammad added rhythm to his paintings. As such, Hammad created contemporary paintings in which the Arabic letter played the most important role and through the letter itself, his playful and joyful compositions revealed a new reality. Salamon Kawlan Min Rabin Raheem, painted in 1986, illustrates the aesthetic evolution and maturity of the artist. From the verse of Sura Yaseen in the Quran, which Hammad was inspired by in a majority of his works, the verse itself is usually recited for protection, solving of problems and is ceremoniously read at burials to ease the journey of the soul into Heaven. As such, his depiction of the letters, and masterful colour palette as they are subtly intertwined, embark the viewer on a journey of spiritual inspiration and serenity. Through his use of expressive brushstrokes, Hammad adds texture and dynamism to the harmonious composition that exemplifies the underlying meaning of the verse itself. Hammad thus manages to imbue his works with a sense of sanctity that is unparalleled.

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