My dependence on the visual world began when I lost much of my hearing through spinal meningitis at 2 years of age. This loss was a blessing in disguise as I learned to depend on body language and reading lips to communicate. So, from my youngest days, I became sensitive to the people around me and the unspoken language revealed through compositions of the human body.

The seen and unseen in human existence has been a conceptual cornerstone for most of my career as a figurative artist. It is in the moment of hesitation when one moves into the interior space of thought, that I find inspiration. I strive to paint not only the delicate features of the external person but to capture the tender unseen presence that transcends understanding in the depth of a soul. In my experience in working with the people that I paint, I repeatedly discover the profound mystery of existence.

  Ali with cat, summer of 1979.

 Ali with cat, summer of 1979.