It is with great sadness that we hear of the loss of the great artist Marwan Kassab-Bachi. Only this time last year we presented the first solo exhibition of his work in London, showcasing a sample of the vast breadth of this incredible Syrian artists work from the 1960s until present day. It was an absolute honour and privilege for us to have this opportunity, and for audiences here to see examples of his work over such an extended period of his practice. The works were all very kindly loaned from the artist’s studio.
I have very fond memories of visiting him there to select the works we were going to show. He welcomed me with such warmth and openness. There were no requests by him for specific work to be shown, instead he left me with the time to look and select whichever work I was interested in, helped by his son Jason. I recall being so struck by the sheer amount of work he had there, how much he had produced and kept producing throughout his life. It seemed his exploration and love of paint, form, materials was limitless as he constantly worked with its potential to evoke the immaterial, the depth of human experience. We are so glad he managed to give an artist talk here during the exhibition with Professor Jörn Merkert.
Marwan’s presence will be greatly missed in the art world, but his work will live on and we hope more audiences internationally will get the chance to experience this inspiring artist’s work.