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Refaayi Ahmad



Austria | 41 Kunstwerke im online-Depot

The compass does not always point north.


Rifaae (Refaayi Ahmad), born in 1977 in Derek, Syria, showed a remarkable artistic talent at an early age. After graduating from the prestigious FINE ART ACADEMY in Damascus in 1999, he specialized further in oil painting and graduated in 2000. His participation in the Syrian SPRING exhibitions in 1999, 2001 and 2003 laid the foundation for an impressive career.

Orwell's vision in the ultrasound of time

In the heart of Damascus, Rifaae opened both a studio and a gallery, where he successfully collaborated with established artists. His early works - apolitical, realistic animal motifs and abstract compositions - testify to his artistic versatility. With increasing political uncertainty for Kurds in Syria, leaving the country became unavoidable in order to preserve his artistic freedom. In 2016, he fled to Austria, where Rifaae created new artistic cycles such as Salmon (2015-2018), Maps (2018-2020) and Birth (2020-2023).

In the Salmon cycle, the artist reflects not only the physical journey, but also his inner emotional migration. In the works of the Maps cycle, the search for localization in a new environment manifests itself. The maps here are not just geographical representations, but metaphorical landscapes of the feelings and thoughts that are experienced when adapting to a new life. The cycle Birth finally reveals the rebirth of the artist in a new culture. It is an artistic manifestation of the development of a new identity shaped by both the roots and the new environment.

Rifaae's ability to combine traditional techniques with modern forms of expression has earned him recognition far beyond the Middle East. His participation in the Open Workshops at the ALBERTINA in Vienna between 2018 and 2019 marks another milestone in his ongoing artistic development. Rifaae's works have been presented in numerous group and solo exhibitions in Syria, Turkey, Kuwait, Iraq, Germany, Italy and Austria and are part of the collection of the Syrian Ministry of Culture.

Rifaae currently lives and works in Vienna.


Since September 2023, BURN-IN has had the privilege of representing Rifaae, an outstanding artist, which represents a significant expansion and enhancement of the gallery's international portfolio. Rifaae's artworks, which are characterized by a profound exploration of current and significant issues, are thus in line with BURN-IN's values and aspirations.

Rifaae's works focus on the human and the unborn, integrating contemporary themes such as diversity and LGBT. These works create a link between art, culture and social reality and challenge the viewer both intellectually and emotionally. They illuminate the tensions between individual uniqueness and social conformity and encourage reflection on progress and regression in human nature.

This makes Rifaae's works particularly relevant for art collectors, institutional organizations and corporate collections. They are characterized by thematic depth, an unmistakable artistic signature and an impressive effect on the viewer. Rifaae's art represents a sustainable investment that will increase in value for many years to come.

online Depot

Brennende Routen (2021)
Paintings, 120 x 120 cm
€ 5.500
Lebenslotterie (2021)
Paintings, 138 x 138 cm
€ 7.300
Chor des Werdens: Embryonale Harmonien (2021)
Paintings, 120 x 120 cm
€ 5.500
Regenbogen zum Glauben (2023)
Paintings, 170 x 150 cm
€ 9.700


  • KALIMAT ART GALLERY | Istanbul, Turkey
  • SYNERGY ART HUB | Riyadh, Saudi Arabia
  • VIOLET ART GALLERY | Kassel, Germany
  • MEGA ART GALLERY | Rome, Italy
  • FEE HAND ART GALLERY | Damascus, Syria
  • SPRING Exhibitions 1999, 2001, 2003 | Damascus, Syria
  • KÜNSTLERHAUS KLAGENFURT | Klagenfurt, Austria
  • AMTSHOF FÜR KULTUR 2016 | Feldkirchen in Kärnten, Austria
  • KUNST- und KULTURZENTRUM FLUCHT NACH VORN, 2016, Vienna, Austria
  • BURN-IN, Gedankenströme, 2023, Vienna, Austria

Awards | Workshops

  • Upcoming Artist 2010 and 2011, National Museum, Damascus, Syria
  • Open Workshops at the ALBERTINA 2018-2019, Vienna, Austria