An interview with our artist of the month – Zeinab El Azzazy
About Zeinab and her Art
What is your Name, where are you from, when and where were you born?
Hi! My name is Zeinab Yehya El Azzazy and I was born 28 June 1978 in Cairo, Egypt.
If you could describe yourself in three words, what would those words be?
Humble, happy and honest
Tell us something about yourself that you would like our audience to know.
My number one passion in the whole world is my Art. Not a single day passes without me sitting down and practicing with my tools.
What is the type/ form/ style of artwork you focus on?
Paintings in all its forms, but my favorite is oil painting.
Describe your creative process?
Since childhood, my dream was to hold a pencil and be able to interpret what I see on paper. Unfortunately, I was not able to join the Faculty of Fine Arts due to family reasons, but I never quit my dreams. When my children grew up, I decided I would take a step towards achieving my dream, so I joined the Dubai International Art Centre in 2014. Since that day, I have never stopped drawing or painting – not even a single day.
How did you commence your journey into Art and what was the first piece of Art that you had crafted?
When I joined the Art Centre, I started out with drawing lessons and soon after, I started experimenting with all kinds of mediums such as charcoal, watercolors, and oils. My first painting was a still life painting of a pot of grapes. It was done in oil and it won a merit prize in the Dubai International Art Centre’s annual members’ exhibition.
How has your style changed over the years?
Of course, my style has developed over the years, and now I am more in control of my paintings than before. I love details, and now I have become even more well-versed with my style.
How do you differentiate your work from the rest?
Details are a very important aspect of my paintings, unlike a lot of modern/contemporary artists nowadays. So I guess you could say that the attention to detail differentiates my work from the rest.
Do you ever experience creative blocks? How do you deal with them?
I think everybody experiences creative blocks every once in a while, but to overcome this, I try to break my daily routine by changing scenery. Sometimes I take trips away for a few days just to recharge and come back with more ideas and more creative thoughts.
If you had the chance to dine with an artist, who would it be and why?
Al Pacino – he is a master of his art.
What drives you to create art and where do you get your inspiration from?
Everything I see is an inspiration to me, even the simplest forms of structure. I like to analyze and interpret even the smallest aspects of using my tools.
Who inspires you as a person, and as an artist?
To me, everyone who is able to conquer or defeat obstacles is an inspiration, for example Taha Hussein. As far as artists go, my teacher “Alem” is my inspiration.
What is your own favorite artwork and why? What’s the story behind it?
My favorite artwork is everything the Ancient Egyptians were able to create. In my opinion, nobody will ever be able to create such extraordinary, exquisite and unique pieces. Every monument, every engraved stone, and every temple are masterpieces.
What role do you think artists have in society?
Artists have a great role in pushing the society forward and upgrading peoples’ tastes. Without artists, the coming generations will be degraded and ignorance will prevail.
How do you see the future of art?
Art has such a great future and a very promising one, especially with our new technological breakthrough . Today’s generations have a great deal of support when it comes to art.
Can you name a book that impacted you as a person or that has left a mark on you?
‘ Dialogue with an Atheist ‘ by Moustapha Mahmoud.
Our brand name is ‘Osheq’ which means Extreme Love or Extreme Passion – what does the word Osheq mean to you as an artist? or what is your own Extreme Love or Osheq story?
My Art is my Osheq.