Portraits in Arabic Calligraphy by Zakaria Ramhani

Zakaria Ramhani was born in the Moroccan city of Tangiers in 1983 into a family of artists where his father was well known for tackling classical issues about his country.

Zakaria Ramhani is Moroccan artist, well known by his portraits in Arabic Calligraphy.

This large painting displays a sadly famous symbol from the Egyptian revolution, widely distributed by the media: the picture of a young woman beaten to the ground by security forces dressed in riot gear, who stripped her and kicked her repeatedly.  But the artist twists the really famous picture by adding incongruous elements to the scene: gorillas, who metaphorically stand for animal-like brutality, Van Gogh’s self-portrait, Warhol ghostly face, branches of a tree, growing in between the characters…

Zakaria Ramhani is Moroccan artist, well known by his portraits in Arabic Calligraphy.

The depicted scene is extremely violent, and has a strong sexual dimension: the physical brutality and the stripping of the girl assimilate the aggression to a rape, the woman being the victim of masculine violence. The triangle composition is striking, as is the contrast between the foreground and the whitish background.

Zakaria Ramhani is Moroccan artist, well known by his portraits in Arabic Calligraphy.

About his work, Zakaria Ramhani said in an interview: “My artworks are based on two levels: first, divide the picture to letters and words and second, focus on the painting itself.”

The artist says the Internet contributes to the techniques employed in his paintings. His unique style involves massive blending of letters to the extent they morph into spacious colors, lights and shadows. He said, “I have a great interest in the images on the net and other media networks which shed light on the Arab World.”

Zakaria Ramhani is Moroccan artist, well known by his portraits in Arabic Calligraphy.

When asked about the message of his paintings, Zakaria said there is no specific meaning and the important thing is to reproduce pictures of interest for the Arab street.

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