Zim Syed

Zim Syed Artist Profile Image

Artist Photo Credit © Alexandra Colegado Dobell

Zim Syed is an expressive representational painter. His upbringing and experiences as a Bangladeshi-American have vastly shaped his artwork. Born in Atlanta Georgia, Syed spent his childhood between the United States, Bangladesh, and the UAE. The vast economic differences between these countries sparked an early interest in socio-economic issues and made a lasting impact on him. Syed moved to Pittsburgh to attend the University of Pittsburgh where he became involved in the arts.

In our networked world, Syed's paintings are a re-versioning of existing forms to inform our wider cultural environment. It's not only his own experiences, but also his place in time that leads him toward the remix. By bringing together deconstructed images into one singular image, Syed provides fresh perspective on social issues, economics, gender, and culture. Working mainly in acrylic, Syed uses brushstrokes to emphasize his emotions. He playfully bends time and space mixing artists, genres, styles, and iconography to re-write history. Syed aims to combine these ideas on his canvases by balancing abstraction, detail, and light.

This fall, Syed received a BIPOC Micro-Grant. A new arts funding initiative created by The Pittsburgh Foundation’s Center for Philanthropy, the BIPOC Micro-Grant gives artists maximum freedom in use of the grant and is a way for the Foundation to carry forward Mac Miller’s creative and artistic legacy and his family’s vision for helping artists, particularly younger artists, recognize their full potential. In addition, Syed was the lead artist on the John Lewis mural at 1815 Locust Street in Uptown to promote visual messages about police brutality, systemic racism, and gun violence. He hopes to continue his artwork aligning with his personal history by creating large-scale murals, intimate paintings and works on paper, and working with film.