Requiem for Free Speech
Washington Post journalist, US resident, and Saudi citizen Jamal Khashoggi was allegedly murdered in the Saudi Arabian consulate in Istanbul on October 2, 2018. It is said that he was dismembered while still living, and that the assassins wore headphones to block out his screaming. This incident has stood out to me among so many other atrocities in the past few years, partly for its open disdain for human rights and free speech, and partly for its brutality.
The painting shows Khashoggi's name written in the Perso-Arabic script, followed by the letters of his name broken apart inside the final letter of his name at the bottom left of the painting. Perso-Arabic writing is a joined, cursive system, and when the letters are written separately and unjoined, they have a different appearance. Here, the name Jamal Khashoggi is written in ordinary cursive and then in the separate (dismembered) letters.
Rest in peace.
Acrylic on wooden panel, 2' x 4'.