'I avoid interpreting my art. I can explain or justify anything else, sometimes with a single word, however I find myself completely unable to hold on to a specific and clear idea that can be used to explain anything that relates to my painting, even the basic agreed measures, such as colours, shapes, lines, symbols or expressions.’ Hani Mazhar

Hani Mazhar’s exhibition at Hay Hill Gallery is presented together with exhibitions of two other Iraqi artists, Ali Jabbar and Ala Bashir. Originally from Baghdad but leaving and working in London since 1991, the artist has produced artworks that are both timeless and iconic.

Symbolic are the birds, flowers and crowns that decorate the paintings. These characters seem to possess wisdom that mere mortals could not understand. That is the reason we are so attracted to Mazhar’s paintings, trying to grasp some knowledge hidden their metaphors and riddles.

His paintings are a mix of the heavenly, fantasy, and reality, countless shades of human nature.

Born in Iraq, Hani Mazhar now lives and works in Britain. His magpie eye for various cultural influences draws from a myriad of sources; from Japanese art through to Mexican literature. Mazhar’s luminous style weaves together traditional, spiritual and mythical references. Contemporary issues are given context by the richness of individual cultural histories, and our mutual tendency to view past events through rose-coloured glasses. The resulting paintings are modern and iconic: strikingly original but with a strong sense of permanence- as though they had always existed.