By Murtaza Ali

The majority of my artworks are based on my journey and reflections, in other words a form of self-expression. For me, art is not only just for fun or entertainment but also to build bridges between humans; reuniting and recording fragments of thoughts, feelings, and memory; and saying things that can't be expressed in any other way. All these answers are deeply personal. I love art and want to promote it, while also enhancing the knowledge about my history, culture and nation and to understand ethics and values of others. 

Being an artist, I cannot just sit and not do something for the sake of humanity. I am a visual artist and I strongly believe that painting is another powerful form of art that heels, brings laughter and creates harmony and peace. There are some people around us which suffer from depression and psychological issues. I strongly believe that art has a great power to bring positive changes in people, society and even in a country. I like the quote that ‘if we don’t start somewhere, then we are not going anywhere’. History has proved that artists have played a golden role for humanity and humans. The world is beautiful and can be made more beautiful by art.

You may ask yourself why I chose the title ‘Green Hell’ for my paintings? It has been around five years since I have lived  in Indonesia, far away from my family. It is a beautiful country full of exciting places for others. But for me, it is a hell because I have been deprived of basic rights such as education, medical care and even a casual job to support myself financially. The only reason for this is that I am a refugee here. Life here is so difficult, full of depression and stress.  And my paintings are my self-impression on the canvases.

My name is Murtaza Ali from Afghanistan. I have been learning visual art since I was very young. I love all forms of art such as musicology, performing art, and literature. Visual art is my favorite because art helps me to explore things like emotions and feelings in a positive way which I can’t express or say with words. Art has given me the power to bring out my catharsis in meaningful ways. Most of the time when I paint or draw something on a canvas it heals me – I like a joyful, soft and energetic feeling while I create any piece of art.