Motesem Mansur (b. 1986) was inspired to begin writing and making art by his father, an artist who relocated from Palestine to Brazil in 1956. Mansur is also a traveler through his art; by creating drawings about local architecture and Chicago neighborhoods, mosques from around the world, as well as work about his own personal journey, Mansur walks us through notions of community, belonging, and periphery. Often creating several practically identical works that are formulaic and stylized but also raw and gestural, he shows his sensitivity for uniformity and marginality – or put another way – sameness and difference.
Also a writer of children’s books, Mansur is active in the anti-bullying movement, offering readings to educate schoolchildren in New York and Chicago about autism, disability and accepting others. Mansur currently lives in Crestwood, Illinois, and has been a member of Project Onward since 2010.