Exhibition At Wadi Finan, Zaid Shawwa

Zaid Shawwa

Brief statement about my work: I was born in Amman in 1978. I studied Engineering at the University of Jordan, and did my MBA at the American University in Dubai.

My love and interest in art started at an early age, mainly working on portraits and landscapes in a classic form and using monochromatic shades of mainly charcoal as a medium.

With time, I felt the need to free myself from the boundaries of classic form into the more abstracted interpretation of figures and surroundings. The early paintings of this stage were abstract expressionist for the most part, relying essentially on expressing the idea in a spontaneous, subconscious and natural way, not shying from the extensive use of color and materials to convey the message behind the painting.

My style evolved into my present form that mainly combines the emotional intensity of abstract expressionism with the deconstructive nature of cubism, in a minimalist expression of the figure and its relationship with its surroundings, encounters and associations.

My paintings are mostly based on real moments in life, intensively sketched and studied to create an image that reflects a feeling rather than an act. I paint mainly using acrylic and oil, my canvases are usually treated with warm underlayment, with cooler colors on top, allowing some of the glow of the warmer shades to spell into the surface, probably portraying the reality of the human soul and what lies behind it. 

In my work, I aim to deliver ideas and feelings that are based on real experiences and that will live and have a meaning to the world.



- Academic Figure Painting and Portrait Painting, The Florence Academy of Art, Florence, Italy.
- History of Art, Several Courses, University of Oxford
- Experimenting with Collage, MoMA
- Deconstructing and Cubist Still Life, The Ruskin School of Art, University of Oxford, UK.


  • 2 Group Exhibitions, Ministry of Culture, Oman, 1994
  • Group Charity Exhibition, Press Club, Ministry of Information, Oman 1997.
  • Collective Exhibition, Press Club, Ministry of Information, Oman 2000.
  • Collective Exhibition, Wadi Finan Art Gallery, Amman, 2016

About the painting:

“Music is a higher revelation than all Wisdom & Philosophy “ Van Beethoven.

There is something about Music and how it touches us, how it relates to time and place, to feelings of love and acceptance... 
It’s part of our memories and nostalgic world, the voice of our mothers, the rhymes of our childhood, the new horizons of adolescence, the memory of our first love and the first cry and laugh of our children. 

In my continuous obsession about Music, I continue relating it to the human soul and its surroundings. I see people as instruments, and travel beyond place and time with each piece I listen to. 
I find relief and refuge in the vibrations of a string, I smell nature in the wood, I seek and find the origin of life in the shape of a Cello, a motherly warmth in the sound of a Viola, a shy speech of love in the whisper of a Flute and a grand presence in the sound of the Piano.... I see the streets of our old towns and its people in the singing of the Oud.  

In this collection I try to capture this unique relationship between man and string. I portray moments of our lives being lived as a musical composition, where love, family, lust, laughter and even silence are the melody that plays, and color and figures are the instruments on the stage of life....

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