PAINTING - JOSEPH
MATAR: THE LAST HURRAH OF THE LAST GREAT MASTERS OF THE GRAND ORIENT
Paintings by Matar: The Alpha and the Omega. A
trinity of celestial visions, enchanted esthetics and humanism - Joseph
Matar: Wealth of Artistic creativity and abundance of mesmerizing multidimensional
The artist is an intriguing, prophetic
and captivating presence which transcended the frontiers of conventionalism
and the limitations of the power of mind and esthetical visions. For
he is a poet, a philosopher, a published author, an academician, a religious
visionary, a painter, a raconteur and...probably, the last of the illustrious
"true artists" of the Near East. Classically trained, nourished
with French and Lebanese culture, traditions, history and arts, Mr Joseph
Matar continued to discover new themes and new esthetical landscapes
through his religious and philosophical contemplations. Admirably he
paints sceneries and landscapes of the magical lands of Lebanon, its
old warm and ethnic houses, colorful villages, faces of shepherds and
peasants, small town gatherings, weddings, prairies and enchanted mountains
enrobed in captivating horizons and memories of the Grand Orient and
his majestic homeland. Equally grandiose and lyrical is his style of
blending and creating colors which transform our troubled world into
a fairytale lands and a kingdom of nostalgic beauty and enchanting serenity.
He is the prophet and grand master of colors. He is the confident raconteur
and lyrical storyteller of the mystical and sacred mysteries and stories
of colors and how they gather through Matar's stokes, passages of cherished
moments in our lives, memories of the good old times of Lebanon, the
peaceful tranquility of its small villages, the stories of the neighbors
and the dreams of a generation embarking on a long journey toward a
future built upon rich traditions from the past and new aspirations
of a multicultural society.
We sense all these humanistic and very touching feelings, and we relive
those lyrical and peaceful moments and passages of time through the
mesmerizing colors, forms and strokes of the genius of Joseph Matar.
This sublime artist and poet wrote: "For more than fifty years
one idea has tormented me, has haunted my dreams and has set me aflame.
Like the ceaseless waves of the seas and the oceans eating into the
shore, it has sculpted in my soul deep convictions leading to a creation
of another order – the creation, or rather re-creation, of the
whole history of humanity under all its aspects, social, religious,
artistic, historical, technical, poetic, and humanist and all else.
The Supreme Creator and any creator, both perform the same great act,
that of creation. It has also been my desire to lay stress on the feminine
role, that of the woman who is goddess, poet, fairy and charmer, the
woman who is motherhood, grace, love, selfless generosity and all goodness,
the woman who is mystery, beauty, heroine, courage..., virtue, wisdom
and inspiration. Finally the conception saw the light of day in the
year 2003. Research, hundreds of outlines, sketches, drawings, geometrical
tracings and forms, lines, constructions and compositions! When one
embarks on such a task there is no more time for sleep! Every three
canvases form one composition, a unity.
The first canvas opens with an incomparable feminine presence, the Holy
Virgin. During these last days of February, 2004, I have just finished
some fifty square metres, but the work before me is very hard and will
take up much time. It supposes a firm resolve, much love, much will-power,
and of course a fund of artistic ability." And this is exactly
what you see and sense in the admirable work of Joseph Matar. You witness
the divinity of art in every whisper he sends free over his canvases.
Matar is one of the greatest living artists of our time.
End of the article.
By David Nye