Afaf Zurayk


Born in Beirut, Lebanon in 1948, Afaf Zurayk graduated from the American University of Beirut with a BA degree in Fine Arts in 1970, and later obtained an MA degree from Harvard University in 1972. Inspired and guided by both music and poetry, Zurayk’s drawings explore, in her words, “the fluctuating gradations of emotional experience,” which is reflected in intense painterly markings that capture both movement and flux – a technique that also characterizes her brushwork in both figurative and abstract artworks. More recently, her paintings have moved away from this “murmur” into an expression of a resounding stillness, where space expands emotionally to both contain and emit energy. In addition to her many solo exhibitions, both in Beirut and Washington, DC, Zurayk has participated in a number of group shows, most notably the exhibition Forces of Change held in 1994 at the National Museum of Women in the Arts, Washington, DC. In 2017 she received the Jouhayna Baddoura Award for her art. In addition, she taught art at the Corcoran College of Art and Design and Georgetown University, both in Washington, DC, as well as at the American University of Beirut and the Lebanese American University in Beirut. She now lives and works in Beirut, Lebanon.