A Mathematical Artist
EL Singapore|September 2021
Currently showing at Redsea Gallery in Dempsey Hill are paintings by Taher Jaoui. We learn more about this self-taught artist, including the inspiration he finds in maths and music.
Rebecca Bisset

A French artist with Tunisian roots, Taher Jaoui studied financial mathematics, engineering, and computer science – he didn’t have a formal education in art. His mother, a maths teacher, familiarised him with the world of formulas when he was a child, and it’s the symbols and signs from these formulas that are now incorporated into some of his compositions.

Tell us about your paintings on display at REDSEA Gallery.

During the process of making my compositions, I like to listen to music, and sometimes I integrate the influence of the songs in my painting process. For example, one of my paintings, You Can’t Make No Mistake, is inspired by the song “Make No Mistake” by Keith Richards. The Ecstasy of Gold refers to a song by Metallica – the beginning of the song is from the movie The Good, The Bad and the Ugly. I really love this movie and I pay homage to it in this painting. I refer to the interaction between the different energies of the characters, something like the cyclical fight between yin and yang.

The Elephant is in the Room was made in 2020, when Donald Trump was in the media a lot. I see Trump as an elephant in a Chinese porcelain shop – and that’s what I’m referring to in the painting!

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