Artist Jean-Paul

Essay by spoonful September 2006

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I participated in an Art Exhibition by artist Jean-Paul Abou-Dib on Wednesday, January 25th at noon. Exhibition Gallery. Because of the art gallery's location, which is next to the library, I often saw his portraits previously whenever I passed by. Without knowing any basic theory about artwork, I often concluded that those were drawings someone just did for himself or for his assignment. However, I soon realized that I was wrong.

A young artist, Jean-Paul, started to explore his world. He looked very confident and charismatic. Most of his works were paintings that were translated from photos which were focused on the condition of people and their relationship with the background. I found several interesting things about his pieces of work. First, the artist used mainly blacks and whites, so most his works looked rather dark. The artist said it is dark but still sticking with the family color.

I think what he meant was that his work is not black but that he wants to express the dark side of human nature. Second, everything in the piece is somehow very blurry, so I thought the pieces were failures, Third, all the people in the pictures were looking at something else, not directed at the onlookers. Their eyes were almost pointless.

Among all the pieces, I found one piece named "everything I love is..." that I interestingly and carefully observed for a while. It was a boy just literally standing with his arm dangling at his sides. This piece was also a little bit blurry and the one of the eyes appeared to be melting down. At a first glance, I thought it was a monster or disabled. At a second look, I was able to identify that it could have been me or anyone else who was feeling...