In this series of large-scale works,
Bassmi Ibrahim escapes the confines of conventional applications of paint by abandoning the bravado of the brush to reveal purity of color and form. Utilizing “pours” of luscious and hypnotic veils of colors layered onto white grounds, Ibrahim creates enigmatic and seductive manipulations that depict more than a current experience - a brief lull. Instead, these paintings document the experience of “intuitive knowing” - connecting with one’s higher consciousness, the “soul self” - leaving behind the physical “self” as in the sublimity of the meditative state.
Born in Cairo in 1941, Bassmi Ibrahim’s aesthetic education began at home with his father, who was devoted to photography. Bassmi went on to study at Ain Shams University, receiving his BA degree in art in 1963. Bassmi attended 4 years of non-credit studies at the College of Fine Art, and while the curriculum focused on making art in older styles, ranging from Classical to Impressionist, Bassmi was deeply attracted to modern painting that eventually became his lifelong preoccupation.
In the mid-1960s, Ibrahim moved to New York, immersing himself in the world of abstract art. One day in Greenwich Village, Bassmi encountered one of his artistic influences, Mark Rothko. Later, while viewing Ibrahim’s work, Rothko encouraged Bassmi in his path as a painter, and Rothko remains a spiritual mentor. Other important influences include the Abstract Expressionist De Kooning and Pollock, and the Color Field painters Paul Jenkins and Helen Frankenthaler. Ibrahim expands these vocabularies by more readily suggesting the manifestation of energy or spirit in the biological world.
Bassmi’s work is in several corporate and private collections and has been widely exhibited in the United States and abroad. His recent solo exhibitions include those at St. Petersburg College, the University of South Florida, Eckerd College, Salt Creek Art Colony, Pensacola Museum of Art, Panama City Art Center and Parkersburg Art Center, West Virginia.