Hussein Amin Bicar (2 January 1913 – 16 November 2002), was one of Egypt’s most prominent artists of the 20th century. His paintings often reflect the rich culture and traditions of Egypt, highlighted by his vibrant use of color and texture. Being the first Egyptian artist to illustrate Arabic children’s books, Bicar has played a major role in establishing and promoting this field.
Life and Career
Hussein Amin Ibrahim Bicar was born on 2 January 1913 near Anfoushi to an Egyptian family. He was an eminent Egyptian painter, musician, writer, and art educator. At the Faculty of Fine Arts in Cairo, he taught and influenced many generations of art students. It was known that Bicar was kind, humane, and passionate about making art accessible to all.
As a young artist, Bicar acquired a wide range of skills, techniques, styles, and mediums. As a more mature painter, he developed a style that streamlined and simplified human figures and landscapes into elegant and refined forms. Using his knowledge of contemporary and modern art approaches, he combined historical Egyptian art traditions. He often drew inspiration from the rural and agricultural cultures of Egypt for his paintings.
In addition to painting, Bicar also worked as a writer and illustrator. As well as writing and illustrating for numerous newspapers and magazines, he also wrote and illustrated his own children’s books. In 1952 he was a founding illustrator for “Sinbad,” the first Arabic children’s magazine. Many subsequent Arabic-language children’s magazines were influenced by his work.
Music was also a passion of Bicar’s. As a Bouzouki and Oud player, he played traditional and classical music in a number of bands. Hussein Amin Bicar died on 16 November 2002.
Award and Legacy
He made an immense contribution, and his contributions were well recognized. In 1942, he was awarded the Medal of pride from the government of Morocco. In 1967, he received the First class Medal of Science and art. Furthermore, he received The State Merit Award in 1978. Mubarak prize (Egypt 2000) shortly before his death
On 2 January 2017, Google Doodle commemorated Hussein Amin Bicar’s 104th birthday.