ABOU SOBHI AL TINAWI, Syria (1888 - 1973)
Muhammad Harb, better known as Abou Sobhi Al Tinawi, was born in Damascus, Syria, in 1888. Raised in a family of painters and tapestry experts, he was exposed to art from a young age. Al Tinawi illustrations embody authentic and popular values, portraying only personalities from traditional folk stories such as Abu Zaid Al-Hilali, Antar, Abla, Imam Ali, Omar bin Wad Al-Amri, Al-Zeer Salem, Dhiab bin Ghanem, Al-Zenati Khalifa, Prophet David, his son Suleiman, and others.
He drew his influence from historical sources and Arab folk paintings while he interacted with his time and place: his art was closely related to the Syrian revolution and directed to lift the revolutionaries' spirit and set for them the examples of the hero. Al Tinawi is considered to be a primitive and folk artist, he paints with a childlike spontaneity, using bright, innate colors and derogating from the laws of painting which principals are unknown to him. He mostly paints on glass and inscribed Arabic letters and traditional verses into his illustrations.
Al Tinawi passed away in 1973.
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