"Creating art, it is necessary to go within, discovering your inner self and learning to express it."
Jehad Taisan. For his Art work, he uses Jehad Saoud, his father’s name. Jehad Taisan was born in 1968 in South Syria in Daraa. His parents lived in Damascus and this is where he has lived since he was born. He had a quiet childhood, and was the youngest of four children.
Jehad Taisan recalls that when other children played, he did not participate. Instead, he went alone into nature to look around - at the sky, the clouds, the trees, and plants, at everything.
After Jehad Taisan went to university to study art, he went regularly to the museum of Damascus. The old civilization fascinated him. It was his starting point. He mixed materials, sometimes making his own colors. People admire his complex techniques. He uses colors from nature.
Jehad Taisan showed and sold his work in Syria but he also had expositions in London, Beirut, Canada. There also were collective expositions. His paintings have been sold all over the world. Now he lives in Holland and shows his work there, this summer in the City Hall of the city of Bronkhorst, in Hengelo (Gld) near where he lives.
Jehad’s artwork depicts a celebration of the divine feminine. With a touch of innocence, elegance, truth, love -he is able to capture the essence of a woman in the most splendid manner. Jehad conveys a potent message -the value of a woman. His art details moments, characteristics and stories in a sacred-like way. All pointing to the beauty, strength and importance of women. He delivers the simple realization that without these glorious beings, we just simply would not be.
Q. What rule does the Artist have in society?
A. The Artist is a mirror of society and reflects the history, as well as the present of society. Internet, unfortunately social media and other media like film makes art and music have less importance for young people.
Q. What’s your best childhood memory?
A. When I was young, I always had spots of paint on my clothes. My friends already saw me as a painter. It makes me proud now that they already saw what was still hidden to me.
Q. As a child, what did you wish to become when you grew up?
A. Deep inside I always knew that I wanted to be an artist.
Q. Do you remember the first art you made? What was it and how old were you?
A. I was about 6 years old when I made a clay object representing an animal. I was surprised about the result. It was my first piece of art.
Q. How and when did you first become seriously interested in Art?
A. Art secondary school, when I was 16 years old I decided to go to art university. During my secondary school I studied art for 6 years at Aziz Esmahil, a famous artist institute in Syria.
Q. What does your art aim to express?
A. I want to give a new vision on the old civilization and mix it with modern art.
Q. What personality trait has gotten you in the most trouble?
A. Sometimes I am very impatient. Because of that I work at night, so I have time enough and won't be distracted.
Q. What have you had to sacrifice for this career?
A. I could have chosen many studies, I had good grades. My family wanted me to choose architecture, so I would be secured, but I followed my heart and chose art.
When leaving Syria, I had to leave all my work behind. I had to start all over painting and trying to sell paintings again. In Syria, I was a well-known artist, in Holland I had to start again.
Q. Who are your biggest influences? Are you inspired by the work of your peers or anyone else in particular?
A. I am influenced by Paul Gaugain. I admire him. And of course, the old civilization.
Q. Is the artistic life lonely? What do you do to counteract it?
A. In the atelier, you work alone and must deal with the white surface. When I leave the atelier, I have a lot of activities, sport, swimming, my family, reading and so on.
Q. Apart from art, what do you love doing?
A. I love biology, nature, and history. And I like to read about those topics.
Q. What is your philosophy in matters of art?
A. Art is a message to all for more peace, love and beauty. Art and war are opposite to one another.
Q. What does 'success' mean to you?
A. Success is development and search for new creativity and continuation.
Q. What are the biggest things you've learned in life thus far?
A. Patience, optimism, let it flow. It helped me to start a new life in Holland.
Q. What’s the best piece of advice you’ve been given, and by who?
A. If the sun does not shine, you must learn to grow under the snow. A French author wrote this and it moved me.
Q. What advice would you give to the next generation?
A. Try and make beauty where you can, make peace. That is all that matters.