The Painful Joy of Love

The Painful Joy of Love


297 X 420 mm, pencil drawing


This self-portrait depicts the romanticised notion of the archetypal artist plagued with the ‘affliction’ of an apparently innate desire to pursue art. With the macabre image of a pencil penetrating the subject’s head, I look to convey the inner turmoil experienced during the tumultuous journey of becoming an artist.


The pages from the 1940s text Questions Of Our Day provide a direct means of contextualising the motifs surrounding this pursuit of career as a fulltime artist that I have chosen to devote my life to. This portrait shows a sense of vulnerability that is traditionally hidden in the presentation of young British men of African descent, such as myself. I hope that it can enable a discourse apropos to mental health to continue.


© 2020 Habib Hajallie art. All Rights Reserved.