FOUR artists, all longtime expatriate residents in the Sultanate of Oman, have shown their love for the country in a special way. As the nation celebrates 51st National Day, the artists have showcased their skills with portrait paintings of His Majesty Sultan Haitham bin Tarik and former ruler late Sultan Qaboos bin Said.
Artistes Sheffy Tattarath, Reji Chandy, Dr Hafsa Banu and Anjali Babu, who practice unique styles, have devoted their time to paint portraits and give their best to the nation which they consider as ‘second home’.
Sheffy’s oil painting work on His Majesties in a single frame for The Walk Mall, Muscat, won much appreciation. He was approached by Muna al Kindi from Al Mouj for the work which he undertook through Golden Brush/Arkan Art where he has been working under Hamed Al Hinai, a well-known architect and painter in the Sultanate of Oman.
An award-winning artiste, Sheffy has experimented with various mediums, using six different photographs to create the image of His Majesty Haitham bin Tariq for the work. For late Sultan Qaboos bin Said, he changed the colour tones from the photograph provided by the client. He follows these kinds of techniques when he paints great rulers since he has had no direct access to their photos.
Another noteworthy is his work on pen and ink on Chitrapat paper blocks which he did for His Majesty’s work. He loves to dabble in this as he gets the feel of watercolour painting and the satisfaction of drawing simultaneously.
A self-taught artist passionate about fine art from an early childhood, Sheffy has judged many competitions in the Sultanate of Oman and conducts art classes both online and personal from his studio.
Reji Chandy, a ‘Limca Book of Record’ holder for his 2,000 square feet drawing on ‘Pookalam’, has drawn the painting of His Majesty in acrylic, now exhibited at Art and Soul Gallery as part of the National Day celebrations.
Reji who likes to experiment with oils, acrylics, watercolour, graphite, charcoal and pastels says the painting is based on His Majesty’s ‘Oman Vision 2040’.
His painting titled ‘Peace on Earth’ was inspired by the life of late His Majesty Sultan Qaboos bin Said whom he terms an exceptional leader. “The leaders of the world admired his philosophy of peace which has established him as an inspiring peacemaker in the Middle East,” he says.
Dr Hafsa Banu Abid, a practicing dentist turned artist who specialises in unique patterns of nail and string art, has come out with the work of His Majesty Sultan Haitham bin Tarik along with his sons, HH Sayyid Theyazin bin Haitham al Said and HH Bilarab bin Haitham al Said.
Aided by over 4,000 nails and 4,500 metres of thread, silver and gold wires, the work measured 130cm x 100cm in size and was completed in about 3 months. “It was challenging to portray such powerful personalities which took a lot of hard work and patience to bring out the intricacies of work. The artwork is very powerful and shows the continuation of the golden era of the Sultanate of Oman moving forward to a new era of prosperity,” says Dr Hafsa.
Anjali Babu, a versatile artist and painter, has used oil on canvas as a medium to paint the work of His Majesty. She has used a hyper realistic method working out all the facial intricacies as he personally favours realism.
Her work on late Sultan Qaboos won huge appreciation from many Omani artistes which gave her a lot of happiness and fulfillment. Anjali is impressed by the natural and cultural heritage of the Sultanate of Oman from where she finds inspiration for her art.