“Why Mister Why?” 2008
Acrylic on wood
This image is a stylistic reference to his earlier works that focused on the individual: usually a desolate male protagonist, combating urban angst. However in the new context, the artist’s reference is specific to the violence in and around Islamic nations. The Urdu script that appears as graffiti on the wall is an entry point into the work—it echoes the title of the painting. Dripping paint runs down the dark background as if the letters are shedding tears of regret, and the lamenting posture of the protagonist re-enforces this regret, it is a silent plea to stop the violence.