Born in Tunisia in 1937, Nja Mahdaoui graduated from the Academia Santa Andrea in Rome and the École du Louvre in Paris in 1967. As a visual artist he has mainly focused on calligraphy. Initially inspired by abstract painting, his work is remarkably innovative in the artistic field of the “written word”. The mere dimension of his lettering draws upon a poetic grandeur and the rhythmic element transports the viewer’s mind into a meditative state. He chooses to illustrate sacred myths, tales and manuscripts. The artist is regularly represented by Elmarsa gallery at international art fairs in Basel, Paris, Abu Dhabi, Dubai, Marrakech and Miami. His works can be found in many private and public collections including the British Museum and the Smithsonian Museum in Washington DC, the Mathaf – Arab Museum of Modern Art in Doha and the Institut du Monde Arabe (IMA) in Paris. He is considered a vanguard in the contemporary Arab art scene.