Jaber grew up as orphan brought up by his sister.
He was illiterate, worked as assistent in baker shop.
Profession / occupation: shepherd, baker, street artist, storyteller, performer.

Art form / medium: painting, collages, plaster-modelling.

Start artwork: in France, to gain an additional income.

References: Michel Ray; ‘Jaber, Grand Seigneur of the streets’, 1999, to accompany the show ‘Jaber’, Museum De Stadshof, Zwolle, 17-12-1999 / 27-02-2000.
Outsider Art Source Book, (Raw Vision) 2016, p.125.

Jaber likes using words in his art works, despite his illiteracy; he works at night.

Jaber Al-Mahjoub was born in 1938 in M’ Saken, Tunisia. Orphan at the age of three years, he was raised by his sister. In the 1950’s he became a baker’s apprentice in Sousse, arriving in France in 1956. In 1958 he became a boxer and still later an actor-singer and travels the world, returning to Paris in 1980. Earns a modest living as a street artist, storyteller and musician.

At night Jaber Al-Mahjoub loves working in gouaches, acrylics, and clay. His work is characterized by the use of rich colouration of space and faces surrounded with black. His works often are often covered with heterogeneous inscriptions made by figures and by words.

A peek into the creativity of Jaber al Mahjoub, a street artist, originally from Tunisia and now living in Paris, France. Encouraged at an early age by the French artist Jean Dubuffet, Jaber calls himself the “Happy Idiot,” obsessively making paintings, sculptures and songs that express the immediacy of life and experience.

Jaber al Mahjoub
1938 Tunisia - 2021 Paris, France