Zihan Kassam is back at Talisman, this time with ‘Elysian Fields’.
Elysian or Elysium in Greek mythology refers the final resting place for the souls of the virtuous. It can also mean to be deeply stirred from joy or incorruptible in spirit.
Zihan’s Elysian Fields present more scenes from nature. She has produced a handful of semi-abstract visions of woodlands, farmlands, mountains and winding rivers. Interestingly, almost all the artwork is blue, a colour we have barely seen in her other work.
The series is a study of texture. We see etched plywood, acrylic, food-colouring, hessian cloth, clothing dye, vinyl, charcoal, rope beaten canvases and unique wooden canvas-cubes textured using sand.
Zihan says Elysian Fields are, “reprieves where the spirit recomposes itself. Looking over a vast expanse of land, the mind tends to wander at will.”
Although she appears to be circling back to nature after the popular ‘Bicycle Man’ series, Zihan tells us this will be the last of her ‘tame’ works. Working with Circle Art Agency, she is privy to high-art from the region and has decided that it is time to move on from her conservative nature-abstracts. She is exploring what that next phase will look like.
Zihan Kassam is an art correspondent in Nairobi who recently moved from The Star newspaper to The Nation. Her exhibition ‘Elysian Fields runs from August 5th to August 24th, 2014.