The Face That Stops

Passersby on busy, bustling Las Olas Blvd in Ft, Lauderdale, Florida, are suddenly stopped by a poignant, strikingly beautiful face in a window. It seems to say look at me and forget your cares. That is its point, says artist Jamali. “It’s the essence of woman.”

And if one look is not enough, there are many similar portraits in the gallery, all with heart-shaped faces, signifying love and peace. One model alone did not serve. The face is a composite of Jamali’s mother and his three sisters. They seem to blend into a glowing artistic whole. Jamali calls his work “mystical expressionism,” and the portraits are unusually produced by pigmentation on cork.

Jamali, now 81, was born in Pakistan. He came to the U.S. in 1973 and lives in Florida. Varied and prolific, he has produced some 25 thousand works –  sculptures, photos and poetry along with paintings. But the mystical woman seems to dominate with a beguiling look that captivates viewers.

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