Ramsey Chahine is a Lebanese American artist who lives and works in New York City.
His paintings are marked by the relentless pursuit of an ideal with most paintings containing multiple painted-over elements buried below the surface. This layering process creates rich textured surfaces that reflect his interest in human psychology and the layers of the unconscious mind. Though time consuming, this painting-over aspect of his practice represents something essential about Chahine's work-- the desire to get it right.
A believer that creativity is revelatory and mysterious, Chahine has a classical view of art, seeing it primarily as a product of instinct, intuition, or guided by muses.
His current work with the Self-Portrait is an adventure into the depth and range of personality. Along with the practical advantages of using oneself as reference, the self-portrait also provides a platform of implied intimacy. Chahine believes painting is a useful tool for the expression of internal forces and experiences, and should create a personal bond with the onlooker.
With his self-portraits Chahine illuminates the underbelly of selfie culture and explores psychological trends of contemporary western society. He regards the self-portrait as a tool for and symbol of the most fundamental human experience, one that is reflective and self-conscious. In this way he identifies the self-portrait as a counter-culture symbol defined by a confrontation with one’s own flaws and vulnerabilities, a process which develops the strength and perceptions of the artist.
As a self taught artist it is one of Chahine's primary values to communicate with an authentic voice. Alongside his visual arts practice he is a lifelong martial artist and experienced ultramarathon runner.