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Dia Al-Azzawi, An Itinerary. Paintings (1963-2011).


  • Espace Claude Lemand 70 avenue Jean Moulin Ave Paris, IDF, 75014 France (map)

An Itinerary is the title of two exhi­bi­tions of works by the great artist Dia Al-Azzawi to allow European col­lec­tors to see how rich is his pro­duc­tion since 50 years. The works are coming directly from his per­sonal col­lec­tion and most of them are exhib­ited for the first time in a gallery.

Corneille. Encounters with the works of Dia Azzawi, Paris, June 1981.

3. Birds in a red Sky: after a very hot day, the sky has sud­denly burst into flames. Some birds fly fran­ti­cally across it, seeking the velvet black­ness of a dis­tant, becalmed night. The strength which emanates from this recent dip­tych is cre­ated by the con­trast of the expanse of black with the vivid, glowing red which answers it. The plastic lan­guage which the artist has forged for him­self has here achieved a true plastic den­sity. One quality in the col­lec­tion of forms which he offers to our view is a new and intense mag­nif­i­cence of colour; little by little writing and let­ters are dis­ap­pearing. He is con­stantly finding new and suc­cessful arrange­ments for the grouping of forms, so that he includes us in his excite­ment.

Out of this shimmer of colours comes forth, as it were, a chant; the harsh, fer­vent voice of the Bedouin in the desert. A human voice, beau­tiful as the voice of his friend Sadi. An authentic voice which tells of the pure, harsh exis­tence of the Bedouins, the nomads, the Iraqi peas­ants, of their piety, their super­sti­tions and their highest aspi­ra­tions.

And, too, Azzawi’s paint­ings make us think of Oriental car­pets, mas­ter­pieces of patience, charged with sym­bols and mean­ings. For the man or woman who looks at the artist’s paint­ings, the glow and beauty of his colours are not only invi­ta­tions to visual enjoy­ment. - Behind the archi­tec­ture of forms and colours with their rhythmic and musical res­o­nances hides a man who speaks of his country - or, rather, sings of it. Our eyes must listen to him.