Visit any touristy area of the city, and you’ll find a plethora of art. The subject matter ranges from local fruit (remember the pomegranates from the recent “Guess that Fruit” post) to cityscapes and landscapes to people. While the subject matter is often the same, each artist finds their own unique way to express themselves. However, that wasn’t always the case.

Under former regimes, the artists of this country were often forced to paint commissioned pieces where creativity wasn’t welcomed. One student shared that her grandfather, a painter during that time, received threats of harm if every medal on a military leader’s jacket wasn’t rendered precisely. Thankfully times have changed, and while artists might be swayed by what sells best, they are free to choose their subjects and mediums.