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ODDO SAIDI

A MULTIDISCIPLINARY DESIGN STUDIO

Marks and mark-making have always fascinated me. A simple, unassuming line comes alive with weight, movement, dimension, direction, and inherent personality. Add color and gradation, and there is an alchemy that transforms the ordinary into the extraordinary.

I am particularly drawn to portraiture, where my objective is not to capture a mere likeness but to represent the subject’s emotional tapestry: the shape and roll of the lip line, the knitted brow, the emotion in the eyes. This requires intense focus on subtle nuances—it is the art of painting what is not visible.

In 1982, at the age of 14, I hopped on the A train and made my way to the Art Students League on West 57th Street for drawing lessons. The drawing instructor was an elderly man with horn-rimmed glasses and a distressed tweed jacket. In one hand, he held an eraser, and in the other, a chalk-tipped pointer. He delivered a lecture with intermittent arm swirls that resulted in perfect marks, all while articulating the skeleton that stood beside him. He concluded the class by emphasizing that his lesson would be moot if we failed to practice.

I discontinued painting and drawing for twenty years while raising two children, now in college, and caring for an ailing parent. During that time, I taught myself graphic design using an open-source program, which I now incorporate into my art. And I practice every day.

"Nulla Dies Sine Linea."

"Nulla Dies Sine Linea," or "No day without a line," is the motto of the Art Students League in NYC.

The Paintings above are:

eyes 1 inch dominoes
figure 2 "hope" 3 inches round

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