Fateh Al-Moudarres

  • Born 1922 in Aleppo, Syria
  • Died 1999 in Aleppo, Syria
Fateh Al-Moudarres is recognized as a leading figure in the development of modernism in Syria. His early, realist painting drew inspiration from sources within Syria, such as Christian and Muslim iconography and Assyrian antiquities. During his studies at the Accademia di Belle Arti (Academy of Fine Arts) in Rome, from 1954 to 1960, Moudarres was influenced by modern art movements, particularly Surrealism. He began to incorporate abstraction into his painting at this time, blending the traditions of Syrian art with Western techniques and stylistic developments. When he returned to Syria, Moudarres’s painting became increasingly political. From 1967 he turned from non-objective painting to social themes, critiquing the upheaval to Syrian families and social relationships wrought by modern life. He was acutely concerned about the damage to Syria’s rural population due to the agricultural crisis—a situation which forced the artist himself to move to Damascus in the 1960s. He continued his studies at the École nationale supérieure des Beaux-Arts (National School of Fine Arts) in Paris for three years in the 1970s. Moudarres subsequently became an influential teacher at Jāmi‘atu Dimashq (University of Damascus). Through his use of rich color coupled with thick, roughened paint, Moudarres depicted everyday people and their ordinary problems with an air of loss and mourning.

Artworks by Fateh Al-Moudarres in the exhibition