Ala Bashir


Ala Bashir

1939 - Iraq

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Ala Bashir is an Iraqi painter, sculptor and plastic surgeon, who is noted for his portrayals of the human condition. He earned his Bachelors of Medicine and Surgery (MBCHB) from the Iraqi College of Medicine in 1963 while also attending the Baghdad Institute of Fine Arts (1959-1962).

In 1970, after serving in the Iraqi Air Force (1963-1966), he obtained his Fellowship from the Royal College of Surgeons, Edinburgh (FRCSEd). In 1979, Dr. Bashir became the Head of the Department of Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery at the Al Risafa Surgical Emergency Hospital in Baghdad. He subsequently led his department to become Iraq’s most prominent Center for Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery, Al Wasiti, at which he served as Director from 1980 until 2003.

Bashir’s works of art have been shown in several international exhibitions throughout Europe, Yugoslavia,Russia, Qatar, Morocco, Libya, India, Tunisia, Egypt, the United States, and Iraq.  Ala Bashir has earned many national and international awards, including the Gold Medal in the Biennale International Exhibition in Baghdad in 1988, the second prize in the International Poster Exhibition in Paris in 1983. He earned the State Award for Medical Science, Iraq’s highest medical award, and in 2003, the State Award for Fine Art, Iraq’s highest art award.

In 2005,  Bashir authored, “The Insider: Trapped in Saddam’s Brutal Regime”, an astonishing testimony of a man who found himself an unwilling confidant to one of the most infamous dictators in history.

Ala Bashir has crafted historically important monuments in Baghdad, including “The Union”, a statue (73 feet high, made of stone, weighing 970 tons), which was destroyed by the Iraqi Authority in February 2010. He also is the author of “The Cry”, a statue (27 feet high, made of bronze), depicting the tragedy of the Amiyria shelter, where 400 women and children were killed by an air strike in February 1991 during the First Gulf War, the monument is located close to the shelter.