Sina Ata

Country: Jordan
Nationality: Iraqi


Born into a diplomatic family in New York in 1955, Iraqi artist Sina Ata had an unusual and historically compelling entrée into art.  Trained as an engineer – he earned his BA in Civil Engineering from Baghdad's University of Technology in 1977, followed by an MA in Building Management from the University of London in 1980 – it was the critical timing of his post-education return to Iraq that was to radically alter his fate.  "Two weeks after I arrived," the artist explains, "the war started."  Drafted into the army and forced to serve five long years of the Iran-Iraq War, Ata was overwhelmed by the countless human atrocities and injustices he witnessed.  To keep himself sane, he began painting, allowing the horrors of war to fuel his artistic vision. "It was therapeutic at first, but then it slowly developed into a passion and a way of life."  Twenty years later, Ata has managed to build an extraordinary international reputation as an artist.  He has participated in group exhibitions from San Francisco to Cairo and from Switzerland to Kuwait, and his work has been the subject of one man shows in London, Baghdad, and Dubai.  Now based in Amman, Jordan, Ata continues to use his heightened awareness of injustice to inspire his artistic production.

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