The good and the beautiful unify men, the bad and the ugly divide them — Tolstoy
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Hassan Massoudy was born in 1944, Irak, and at the age of seventeen, he started to work with calligraphers in Baghdad for eight years. In June 1969, he attended Fine Arts School in Paris. Hassan Massoudy's creations came out from the meeting of the past with the present, the Eastern art with the Western art, from tradition with modernity. He has been perpetuating the tradition of calligraphy craft at the same time as breaking it; he simplifies lines, tending to purer lines, adding colours opening on to a wider unlimited world. He has introduced in it some signs, letters, and words sentences throughout his creations to better express himself. Some of them are listed below:
There is a place on earth for everyone. (Schiller),
Earth is my country and mankind my family. (Khalil Gibran)
Hassan Massoudy's calligraphies carry out a rhythm, a musical structure which echoes back to the very remotest of times. The emotion is very strong when looking at the movement of his lines, their weight, their lightness, their transparency, the balance between black and white, the fullness and the vacuum, the concreteness and the abstractness. The artist has kept from his training of calligraphy, the noble spirit of a handcraft. Hassan makes his own inks and pigments from a chemistry of his own and from a personal selection of papers. Hassan Massoudy is a true modern artist in vital communication, with the outside world: he publishes books, produces exhibitions, gives speeches and teaches the art of calligraphy.
What can be admired in Hassan Massoudy is the masterful use he makes of colours in his compositions. He has opalescent washes, flows of emerald, monochromes of beiges enriched with deep wood tones and sandalwood fragrances. This is a new era, which is then open to calligraphy. Indeed, lovers of exoticism and antique may be disappointed. Hassan Massoudy is not the living fossil of the old Arabic calligraphy. He is an artist of our time. His art belongs to that very end of the twentieth century, despite the ancestral roots that he immerses in the tradition of the Orient.