|This biography from the Archives of AskART:|
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Born in Cairo, Egypt in 1958, Essam Marouf graduated from the Mural Painting Department of Helwan University's
Faculty of Fine Arts in 1981. After completing his studies, he traveled to Rome to attend the Accademia di Belle
Arti, establishing a home in Europe upon obtaining a graduate degree in 1985.
Marouf currently lives and
works between Amsterdam and Cairo. Since his first exhibition at the Nile Gallery in Egypt in 1989, he has
gone on to participate in shows throughout the Middle East and Europe, notably at such venues as Art Paris
(Abu Dhabi), L'Institut du Monde Arabe (Paris) and the Complesso del Vittoriano Museum (Rome).
His work is
housed in private, public and corporate collections around the world.
From legendary songstresses to unidentified women, Marouf extracts the nature of his subject through
experiments in light, color and composition. Using an unusual palette when isolating his figures against
uniformed backgrounds, he appears more interested in capturing their mood than any realist state. Although
depicted with great detail, his current focus is on the use of tonal variation to accentuate their forms, posture
and disposition, making for fascinating contemporary portraits that break from conventional painting.
Appearing through washes of fluorescent hues, his female protagonists serve as enigmatic vehicles to an
intensely delicate world.
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