THE YOUNGEST PAINTER IN DHI QAR: A talented local 10-year-old has created more paintings and exhibited more times than most adult artists.

At kindergarten, his first paintings were scenes from nature. A river, the sun, birds. But that is where the similarity ends.

By Amir Al Ali, in Nasiriyah

Mustafa Asil was just five years old when his family realized that their boy had an unusual artistic talent. The family is not wealthy but his mother tried to supply the youngster with paints, paper and an easel and his father introduced him to his friend Adel Dawood, a professional artist and sculptor.

Dawood says that Mustafa first attracted his attention when the boy was just seven years old. He began to ask questions about colours and the nature of different paints and brushes, Dawood says. “Children don’t usually ask questions like that,” the older artist explains – which is why he decided to teach Mustafa more advanced painting techniques and how to use oil colours. Dawood says he’s never seen a child this young and this talented.

Mustafa is now ten years old and his work has been exhibited seven times already – he has created 49 oil paintings, most of which are kept at his home when they are not on show.

In doing this, Mustafa, whose favourite subjects are landscapes, has had to overcome some challenges. His family home is small but his mother has turned part of her kitchen into a studio space for her young son, so he can work away from his other brothers.

Despite their lower income and their crowded house, Mustafa and his family are determined to help the young artist realize his talents.

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