Born in Damascus, Syria in 1976, Elias Izoli is a self-taught painter whose creative talents were revealed at a young age. His intricate paintings of children caught in the crossfire of political violence are executed in startlingly vivid colours, creating emotionally laden portraits in compositions that defy conventional portraiture. His unique and bold use of colour, which is applied through gestural and fragmented brushstrokes, enhances the loss and sadness portrayed in his subjects’ expression. In 1993, he held his first solo exhibition at the age of 17 at the Russian Cultural Centre in Damascus and he exhibited at Ayyam Gallery in Beirut and Dubai in 2010, 2012 and 2013. The artist lives and works in Damascus.