Odtülüler Dershanesi

Louay Kayyali

Louay Kayali was born in Syria in 1934. Kayali studied decoration at the Academy of Fine Arts in Rome from 1956-61. He served as a teacher in Syrian high schools before becoming a professor in the Faculty of Fine Arts at Damascus University.

The first exhibition of his paintings was held in his hometown of Aleppo in 1952. In 1967 his controversial exhibition ‘Fi Sabil al-Qadiyyah” including thirty black and white works in charcoal, was criticized by many artists and journalists as being very pessimistic. After Israel’s victory in the Six-Day war and the occupation of Arab territories, Kayali went into such a deep depression that he destroyed all the works from the show.

The Arab world’s most important socio-political artist, Kayali became best known for his paintings of simple folk going about their daily business, their suffering and fatalism conveyed through their eyes and mannerisms. His own mental suffering led him to personalize these figures. He died in 1978 alleged to have committed suicide.

Many of his works are now kept at the National Musuem of Damascus and in private collections across the Arab world. Kayali’s canvases depict subjects in a style that is a mixture of both Realism and Expressionism.

Artwork for Sale

by Louay Kayyali


38 X 38 inches