Ismail Shammout

Ismail Shammout was a Palestinian artist born in the town of Lydda (later renamed Lod) in 1930. To quote from an excellent review of his work at Howling Infinite, “His Palestine is a timeless, almost dreamlike place … there are scenes of harvest time and the gathering of the fruits of the fields and the orchards. There are grains and vegetables, olives and water melons, apricots and pomegranates, figs and grapes, and the oranges for which Palestine was long famous. Such bucolic scenes of a gone world – gone for us all, and not just for Shammout’s country folk – are juxtaposed with graphic images of the Nakba, and of exile, of expulsions and dispossession, of conquest and occupation, and of ongoing protest and resistance. And through it all are motifs of hope and of peace – flowers, songbirds, and doves – and also, of conflict and resistance – flags and banners, rifles and rocks.”

Below are some of his paintings, as well as additional links for further reading.

If you’d like to learn more about Shammout’s life, this biography from Palestinian Journeys is a great start: https://www.paljourneys.org/en/biography/9727/ismail-shammut

Here is the review from Howling Infinite which I mentioned earlier: https://howlinginfinite.com/2020/04/16/visualizing-the-palestinian-return-the-art-of-ismail-shammout/

His wife, Tamam al-Akhal, is also a famous Palestinian artist. Here is an interview with her from Artmejo: https://artmejo.com/at-the-studio-with-tamam-al-akhal/

Thanks for reading!


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