Khaled Makshoush, a young Saudi freelance artist, is pioneering pixel art in Saudi Arabia and is enjoying promising success on the international scene, including a planned appearance at Paris Fashion Week 2021.
He had started this discipline in 2016 as a hobby, far from suspecting the success that his works would later meet on an international scale. Today, as he has just been commissioned to produce artworks to decorate the Paris Fasion Week, Khaled Makhshoush measures how far he has come. “It didn’t happen overnight,” the artist tells Arab News. “There was a time when I was already delighted to receive a few hundred likes by posting my works on social networks. Today, the game has changed, and the Saudi receives thousands of thumbs up on virtually every one of his posts from fans, both international and local.
At only 28 years old, the man who was born and raised in Riyadh is happy to have received the recognition he needs to “feel like an artist”. But recognition isn’t everything, and since you have to be pragmatic, let’s note that he now receives requests from clients all over the world, some of whom have even advised him to review his price range, as he wasn’t valuing himself enough.
Not your everyday painter
His hobby is pixel art, a visual expression from the digital world whose basic material is the plastic representation of a pixel. What seems at first glance relatively simplistic takes on a whole new dimension when an enthusiast raises his hobby to the rank of art. His paintings revisit existing landscapes, in Riyadh or elsewhere, and all carry the graphic identity of 8-bit and 16-bit video games of yesteryear.
An aesthetic bias that allows the young freelance artist to serenely cross borders and successfully export a fresh and current vision of contemporary art. And his compatriots, undoubtedly impressed by such a rise in power, join the hype to further increase the order book of Makhshoush. The circle is closed…