This issue’s featured artist is May Elian, a Lebanese-Canadian multidisciplinary artist with a background in journalism and based in New York. Elian’s work is extremely expressive and through abstract and non-objective 2- and 3-dimensional artworks she intentionally exposes her emotions while offering time for contemplation while engaging in a conversation through poetic narratives.
Portraying traumas, human rights and ecological issues she starts “with a thought, poem, or word that [she] intuitively hide into [her] composition[s].” Her choices of materials: with acrylic, gauze and plaster help her “depict the agony generated by multiple, unhealed traumas” and enhance her combination of employing “oxymorons: concrete, anxious forms and raw material while longing for softness, slowness and closeness.”
“Art for me is a continuous conversation where even mundane items fit. In Edward Hopper’s words, ‘If I could say it in words, there would be no reason to paint,’ and I dedicate my work to what ‘not enough words can express.’ Typographical elements—Akkadian, Arabic, English, French or Morse code—are intentionally used to induce interaction. Incorporating script into my composition invites the visitor—if interested—to decipher it. It is also like a charm that can protect your space and soul if you so choose” (https://maydotelian.wordpress.com/about-me/).
Elian is currently working on transforming poetic discourses into 3-dimensional installations that activate the public space, urban and rural.