Hassan Massoudy in his Paris atelier
In a Few Words
Born In: Najaf, Iraq
Lives In: Paris, France
Background: Master calligrapher Hassan Massoudy is one of the world’s most influential forces in Arabic calligraphy today.
Primary Themes: Massoudy has achieved a sublime balance that fuses tradition with modernity through his explorative career.
In a Few More Words
Hassan Massoudy was born in 1944 in the city of Najaf in Southern Iraq. Massoudy moved to Baghdad in the early 1960s where his fascination with modern art was sparked. Massoudy apprenticed under a number of celebrated calligraphists, which gave him a solid foundation in the artistic practice of traditional calligraphy. He moved to France a decade later, where he went on to study at the École Nationale Superieure des Beaux-Arts. During his time there, Hassan Massoudy focused on figurative painting drawing inspiration from the works of Matisse, Soulages, Leger and Picasso while still holding a keen interest in calligraphy.
Hassan Massoudy views letters as images that are deeply connected to our human core; through his art, he’s on a constant quest of self-discovery. Massoudy’s mission is to emit truth and sincere human emotion in everything that he creates. When choosing phrases to depict in his art, Massoudy seeks ones that evoke images and goes on a visual quest that keeps the architecture of words in mind. He then often deconstructs them only to reassemble them in ways that are rhythmical, balanced and beautiful. What makes Massoudy’s approach to calligraphy so special is that he dares to maneuver letters and turn them into abstract forms as that feel well-suited to his creative expression.