Yazid Oulab, 'Untitled', 2016, Graphite and oil on canvas, 100h x 81w cm, Unique, Selma Feriani Gallery
Yazid Oulab, 'Untitled', 2016, Graphite and oil on canvas, 100h x 81w cm, Unique, Selma Feriani Gallery 

Through his drawings, paintings, and sculptures, Yazid Oulab depicts various linguistic forms. In a re-visitation of Sumerian cuneiform writing, he distorts nails with his own hands and transforms them into Alif letters. Within this process is embedded a visceral interest in the philosophy of Sufism and in Sufi contemplation, Sufi silence, Sufi repetition, and Sufi solitude. Oulab’s influences include Paul Cézanne, from whom he borrows the magic of simple forms, Antoni Tapies, whose work frees him from the ‘beautiful’, Joseph Beuys, with whom he assumes mysticism as a way of being in art, and William Turner through whom he preserves the mystery of the landscape.

In the late 1980s, Oulab left the School of Fine Arts in Algiers to join Luminy, the Marseille School of Art. His work has been featured in group exhibitions in Grand-Lancy, France (2015); Paris, France (2014); and Bad Hombourg, Germany (2013). He has had solo exhibitions in Tunis, Tunisia (2015); Lisbon, Portugal (2014); and Paris, France (2012).