Fadi Mikhail was born in Harlow, Essex in 1984 to Egyptian parents. Before graduating from The Slade School of Fine Art, London, Fadi was apprenticed to the renowned Egyptian icon-painter Prof. Isaac Fanous in Los Angeles, where he trained as an iconographer. In 2013, Fadi was commissioned by Royal Mail to produce their 2013 Christmas stamp ‘Theotokos’. Soon after he was again commissioned to produce 2 matching icons for HRH Prince of Wales and his recently born grandson Prince George. Several churches and cathedrals worldwide are decorated with paintings by the artist, and he is equally collected by international ambassadors and clergy.
Fadi’s work has always taken 2 parallel routes – that of Egyptian Christian (Coptic) Iconography and that of figurative oil painting.
The subjects or inspiration for his figurative works are drawn from his love of all things literary, childlike and fantastic. From stories like Mary Poppins, Narnia, Charlie and The Chocolate Factory and Peter Pan, Fadi celebrates images and stories he has enjoyed since his youth.
From European folklore, to Roald Dahl's fictional characters, to Walt Disney’s films, Fadi remains determined to relive images of his youth by painting them over and over in thick semi-abstracted daubs of oil until a satisfactory balance of shape, colour, line and structure has been found. It is this pushing and pulling of paint to create the same 'hard-won' image spoken of about Frank Auerbach and Leon Kossoff's work that Fadi finds most interesting.