Ibrahim El-Salahi, The Inevitable


Often considered El-Salahi’s masterpiece, ‘The Inevitable’ was first conceived by the artist during his wrongful imprisonment. Deprived of paper, El-Salahi would sketch out plans for future paintings on the back of small cement casings, before burying them in the sand whenever a guard would come near. Working in this manner led to the artist developing a new style, one seen in ‘The Inevitable’, where a painting spreads out from what he refers to as the ‘nucleus’, or the germ of an idea, with a meaning hidden even from the artist himself until the work is finished.

Only when he saw ‘The Inevitable’ completed did El-Salahi realise how clear the message was; that people must rise up and fight tyranny and those that suppress them. This was something he felt was relevant not just to his own life when he created the work in the mid-eighties, but to all of Sudan.

Cite this page as: Tate, "Ibrahim El-Salahi, The Inevitable," in Smarthistory, September 10, 2021, accessed July 19, 2024, https://smarthistory.org/ibrahim-el-salahi-the-inevitable/.