Painting has been an integral part of Mohamed Ben Slama’s daily life since the age of 17. In 2002, he was awarded a fellowship at the Cité Internationale des Arts in Paris. He was also granted an art residency in Lebanon in 2003. Ben Slama’s paintings are intended to be anonymous: faces are carefully concealed, brilliantly and delicately hidden. Stories and legends are added to these elusive faces. The artist is inspired by storytelling. From La Fontaine to the Brothers Grimm and Japanese mangas too, this curious, dynamic artist leaves nothing out. The Protagonists series is made of animals’ portraits imbued with irony, cruelty, tragedy and tenderness, which reflect all the mediocrity in which the artist drowns his characters. These animals’ portraits appear as masks and raise questions about identity, gender and politics.