A Syrian refugee who moved to Huddersfield to flee the violence has unveiled his poignant artwork depicting his country’s civil war.
Talented artist Izzat Taljeh fled to Huddersfield in 2014 with daughter Salma, now five, to escape the war and be with wife, Maysoun, who was studying at the University of Huddersfield.
Izzat, who has a Fine Art degree from Damascus University, says he finds painting the harrowing scenes he left cathartic.
He now hopes to show his work - which also includes familiar local scenes - to the public.
Izzat, 45, said: “I started reflecting the pain and sadness about what is happening. At the same time, I wanted to present the Syrian civilisation and culture.”
Izzat now has humanitarian protection and lives in Moldgreen with his family. He paints at home while searching for a full-time job and improving his English.
One of Izzat’s paintings has been featured as a mural at the Kabana restaurant on Trinity Street.
Wife Maysoun Rustoum, 37, said: “When he was in Damascus he saw some horrible things.
“He came to England and he was in a bad way. My daughter was scared all the time, especially of loud noises and strange people.”
Maysoun, who now works for Viva examinations, said: “He began painting and every time he would think about the situation in Syria and paint what he thought.
“The paintings are a reflection of his emotions and feelings about what is happening there.”
The couple are currently finding ways to exhibit Izzat’s art to the public.
Paintings he has done show scenes such as people getting into boats to escape and an ancient monument similar to the one at Palmyra torn down by Islamic State, which houses faces of those who have died in the war.
The artwork is a far cry from his Huddersfield scenes, showing terraced Yorkshire stone houses, rainy pavements and even the Lindley bus.
Izzat uses watercolours and even coffee to paint the anarchic scenes.
To view more of Izzat’s work, visit the Syrian Artist Izzat Taljeh Facebook page.