Ibrahim Abusitta - Artist of the Month

Ibrahim Abusitta (he/him) is a Palestinian-Canadian visual artist, currently residing in Toronto. Prior to pursuing a practice in painting, Ibrahim obtained his Bachelor of Fine Arts from OCAD, specializing in photography. The skills acquired during this time helped harness the structure to Ibrahim’s self-taught painting practice.

Over the years Ibrahim has participated in many group exhibitions, however more recently his first ever solo exhibition, Diary of the Usual Sadness, debuted in Smoke The Moon, Santa Fe. Ibrahim’s paintings delve into themes of colour, texture, memory and time.

To further his contributions to the art community, Ibrahim was a contributor to Canadian Art Magazine on the discussion of BIPOC representation in Toronto's commercial art galleries.

With over 30 paintings in this series, Head Space is an on-going series that has been evolving since 2018. The framework of this collection of paintings is to create imagery on a metaphysical plane, playing in between abstraction and representation. The ‘head’ motif is a stand in for the artist, the viewer, and everyone in between.

Head Space 01, 2019

Acrylic on paper

9 x 12 in

Private Collection

Each Head Space painting comes with a new world and perspective. As the series continues, you can observe how Ibrahim’s depiction of spaces sometimes blend with optical illusions. For instance, in Head Space 02 we can’t decide if the back wall is the interior or exterior of a rectangular prism.

Head Space 02, 2018

Acrylic on Paper

16 x 12 in


In this new Head Space, we sensed a story about community within public spaces. Though there are no limits or definitions to abstract paintings, joy can be found in attempting to conjure up the story behind the painting. For example:

In this public park, a prism stands tall and firm with a few feet of grass between it and the vertically running sidewalk. With colours reflected on the planes of this sculpture, we believe it is likely metallic. As a stationary object, it rests in place while spectators circle and analyze it. This sculpture sits in a public park and becomes a beacon to draw in people. It incites dialogue and therefore builds a community around it.

Head Space 05, 2019

Acrylic on Paper

12 x 9 in

Private Collection

Head Space 06, 2019⁠

Acrylic on Paper⁠

12 x 9 in⁠

Private collection⁠

This piece speaks to Ibrahim’s use of texture in his work as depicted by each brush stroke in the magenta, the crisp tape edges, and the various textures within the lime sub-sections. There are also many layers in this 14th piece. There are more colours and shapes beneath the layers of brushed and splattered paint. Even the black tape lines have deep crimson paint strokes within them.⁠

⁠Head Space 14, 2019⁠

Acrylic on Paper⁠

9 x 12 in ⁠


With a bold window fixated in the center of this work, we can’t help but think back to Khadijah’s uses of windows in her prints. Are we looking in on an intimate moment?⁠

In some multi-verse of paintings, this could actually be the same moment but created in two distinct styles.

⁠Head Space 20, 2019⁠

Acrylic on Paper⁠

9 x 12 in⁠

Private Collection

Ibrahim’s use of layering is becoming another distinctive style trait with in his practice. This work does a lovely job of framing the subject with its sharp edges and rounded corners. We also find it interesting that Ibrahim has introduced a new subject manner in this series. The introduction of this bird has us scratching our heads looking for a metaphor.⁠⁠

Head Space 25, 2020⁠

Acrylic on Panel⁠

12 x 9 x 1.5 in⁠


Although the repeated heads in Head Space 05 suggest ideas of community, this use of multiples feels like a confrontation. There are no expressions on these faces but the proximity of the three primary coloured heads signify a sense of unity against the opposing, singular head.⁠

Heads aside, we find a lot of comfort in Ibrahim’s colour palette and line work with this piece.⁠

⁠Head Space 27, 2020⁠

Acrylic on Panel⁠

12 x 9 x 1.5 in⁠


It’s been such a pleasure celebrating Ibrahim’s paintings this month and exploring the complexity of his work. Since this series is on-going, be sure to give Ibrahim a follow and send him some love ❤️

We’re look forward to the new spaces Ibrahim will place our heads into. Cheers!

Head Space 28, 2020

Acrylic on Panel

12 x 9 x 1.5 in


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