Exhibition: May 31st-June 30th, 2019
Opening Reception: Saturday June 8th, 6-9pm
Painting is inherently autobiographical. As both an indigenous individual and child of a Libyan immigrant, my work allows me to investigate these experiences through painting. My painting practice is based on remembered landscapes and landscapes described to me by family members, the paintings are about the reclaiming of land and memories. I choose to abstract these landscapes into all consuming compositions, painting in styles that are appropriate to both of my cultural backgrounds. I aim to meld Yurok and Arab sensibilities by abstracting landscape and blending the subject matter almost out of existence. In Yurok art, nature is represented through iconography and abstract shapes, and in Islam the figure is not painted but made present with mark making and color, these all consuming compositions remove the figure and blend the landscape into a pattern.
My recent paintings are about reclaiming space, emotional, physical, ancestral and mental. This current body of work attempts connection with family and ancestors through imagining a shared presence in a world unscathed by the legacy of colonialism and the march of hyper-capitalism that we live in now.
The paintings are an experience of color, contrast, plant life and abundance, a dense experience of shape, color and form.
To stay connected with Saif and keep up with his work, follow him on instagram: @like_a_safe