Faisal Khouja is a Painter and Printmaker with a unique style of work which can seem deceptively simple at first but is, in fact, quite involved, intricate and sensitive. In his work, which consists mainly of expressive Linocuts as well as some oil paintings, Faisal seeks to create evocative, uplifting and highly coloured pieces which truly lift the soul.
Subject matter is, more often than not, traditional, in line with the Impressionists and Post-Impressionists of yesteryear. But his expressive techniques are anything but traditional. Faisal will often use methodologies such as syringing, finger-painting and heavy impasto with a blade and to invoke a more “Primal” feeling to the artwork. However he is equally at home with brushes for the finer details. The Linocuts are gouged out expressively, often seeking to enhance the geometry found in the Natural World. As many as 5 separate colour plates are used to achieve the final hand print which is executed using a traditional Letterpress. Aesthetically, compositional balance and finding and championing the natural patterns and “rhythm” of the Natural World is key. The over-arching aim is always to be as expressive and original as possible with the paint or the ink as the artwork evolves organically.
Faisal started Painting and Printmaking after a long illness lead him to give up his job as a professional photographer. Being bed-bound for many months he would dream up bright and colourful pictures in his mind’s eye, an art therapy of sorts, and promised himself that, when he recovered he would dedicate his life to bringing these “memory pictures” to life and to generally endeavour to create positive work with the sole criteria being to try to make people feel uplifted when in the presence of the artwork.
It could be tempting to overlook the work as being purely decorative and not serious enough. In fact Faisal could not be happier than to leave the “conceptual work” to Art school graduates and concentrate on creating artwork saturated with optimism and hope in a World that surely needs more joyful, uplifting Art.