Iraqi artist Jaber Alwan  is the first foreigner in Italy to receive the best artist prize from the municipality of Rome, where he resides. Alwan was born in the historical Iraqi city of Babylon  rich in culture and heritage. After graduating with a degree from the Fine Arts Institute in the capital Baghdad in 1970, Alwan moved to Rome two years later to study sculpture and received there a degree from the Academy of Fine Art. Not only did he receive accolade for his work, but he also settled in the city until the present time. “When I arrived in Rome, I felt the city was a pretty woman of 2,000 years. She hugged me and cast a magical spell on me,” Alwan said. The artist’s work is characterized by a combination of random colors and brush strokes, a style he discovered in the early stages of his profession. “Once I take the brush, I am not in control anymore, and the painting is in the driver’s seat,” he said. “Critics say that my paintings have an orderly sculpturing element.” Alwan has held countless solo exhibitions mainly in Italy and Iraq but also in various cities in the Middle East.  His work is displayed in modern art museums across the globe, in countries such as Russia, Qatar , Egypt , Portugal, Chile, and Japan.