A guided tour around some art galleries in Beirut.
Galerie Janine Rubeiz
July 20 – August 26
Participating Artists: Rached Bohsali | Elie Bourgély | Bassam Geitani | Joseph Harb | Leila Jabre Jureidini | Jamil Molaeb | Elissa Raad | Aida Salloum
Hanibal Srouji | Ghada Zoghbi
Inaugurating this luminous season, in spite of the asynchrony we are living, Galerie Janine Rubeiz is proposing this collective exhibition of paintings as a sign of hopeful conjecture.
Back in 2021, Galerie Janine Rubeiz launched its Fall art season with a series of exhibitions focusing on “painting”. Today, this collective exhibition follows through with the gallery’s efforts to present known and emerging artists to the art scene, in an attempt to shed light on what “painting” is today in Lebanon.
Aram Jughian | Fireworks
July 6 – August 5
Galerie Tanit launches the summer season with a colourful solo exhibition by painter Aram Jughian.
New works by the artist will take over the gallery’s main space bursting an amalgam of colours meticulously combined on large canvases bringing out nature, its elements, and its changes.
The show will run in parallel to an exhibition titled “Trois Regards,” by three women photographers presenting their disparate gazes of life and stillness. Joumana Jamhouri’s industrial shots lay the foundation for Randa Mirza’s Beirutopic representations of a city under construction.
As for Rania Matar’s work, it presents the woman, throughout her life, her varied contexts and settings from her series SHE.
Art on 56th
Maroun Hakim | A Salute to my Country
July 14 – August 6
The collection of artworks is composed by 36 new paintings created between 2017 and 2022 along with 13 sculptures created between 2016 and 2022 (except for one which was previously exhibited in 2001).
I am clothed with the soil of my country, I will not abandon the soil, I will not abandon my country.
I gather my personal pain, gather the sorrows of my slain country. Take refuge in a dream with hope, with beautiful patience, with wisdom, and with will, and prevent tragedy, prevent disaster and the disappointments of time, from achieving victory over me.
The wounds are thick, the paths are dark and closed, and the beasts gnaw at the body of the city and perch on its ruins.
The wounds heal, the mind calms, I arrange the sorrows, I conjure the coloured spaces and begin to restore the face of the earth, declaring peace, raising its flag, in search of light, or the wing of a bird, or a rose that emanates its smell from the groans of rubble.
Before the big explosion, before its volcanoes erupted, my Nature was magical, inspiring, luminous, and serene. I painted and coloured it as if it were fountains of light and joy:
Flirting with the clouds of its Spring and Summer, with the warmth of its snows, with the hotness of bricks, with the serenity of the earth after the harvest seasons and the olive picking. Enjoying its sunrise and sunset, its moonlit nights, glimpsing the mountains guarding the plains, its stillness, its dialogue with the sky, its clouds flirting with the mist, and its sun fleeing at sunset, but on the promise of return.
Our earth is our mother, from its sweetness I create splendor. Her pains are maternal pains, her tremors inciting the births of creation.
The works of this stage are characterized by their bright colours and bright lights. It is characterized by different densities of colors and textures in the sensory and visual texture, and spaces that call for joy and pride, in the seasons’ prayers and the change of their climates between sunrise and sunset, and in capturing the temptations and desires of light.
Suddenly, without warning and due to a mysterious rage, dreams vanish: the light withdraws, the horizons darken, and the city is blown away.
Darkness prevails, and death reaps crowds of loved ones in my country. Bodies mingle with doors and windows, stones, dust and darkness, and all paths lead to the unknown, to the crushing darkness.
Hope becomes a mirage before the ruins of the surrendered city and its angry entrances.
Dreams fade over the ruins, in the fall of disappointments, the darkness of the roads, and the bottom of the abyss.
In this era, my feelings freeze, my creative abilities stagnate, and my desire to formulate artworks that embody the horror of tragedy is paralyzed.
In the struggle of reflections, obsessions, and suffering, in the bitterness and horrors of bereavement, my brushes, paints, and chisels await the moment that leads me to the white paper, to the cloth, to the stone.
… And when the terrors of emotions and storms subside, when the land of ashes gathers its sorrows, to declare that it is a land of peace and love in a time of wars, and when they decide to rise up from the depression of their disappointments and heal their wounds, and when they are armed with hope so that the homeland does not become cemetery or exile, I regain my creative health, and I decide to express in color through movement this critical stage in the history of our country, but without tension, without directness, leaving my artistic feelings to frame this solemn event with works that remain purposeful aesthetic witnesses.
In this section of the works, the subject shifts from the countryside to the city, with its buildings and rubble. I focus on the scattering of buildings and what they contain, and on narrow spaces, squeezing themselves with opaque colours devoured by the scattering of door and window openings and crashes, suggesting ruin and fragmentation. It is as if behind every hole a human eye bears witness to the bereavement and its horrors.
From the heart of this hurricane, hope creeps into this darkness, expanding the space for some light so that hope and resurrection can breathe in the spirit of the homeland and its components, in an optimistic view aimed at cooling souls and calming congestion, hoping that this aesthetic and human moment will be our opportunity for new beginnings.
Agial Art Gallery
A Search for the Fantastic: The Doche, Séraphim and Barrage Group
July 21 – August 12
A flashback to modern Lebanon of the 60s and 70s, pre-war Beirut, through this exhibition linking the works of a group of 3 avant-garde artists friends, Georges Doche, Juliana Séraphim and Fadi Barrage who have disappeared and been lost over time…
This project aims to create an identity for three Lebanese avant-garde artists and bring them together under the same school by highlighting the influence of the imaginary and the fantastic on their work.
The exhibition highlights the artistic journey of Georges Doche (1940-2018), Juliana Séraphim (1934-2005) and Fadi Barrage (1940-1988) through a selection of 25 works, and therefore represents a tribute and a revelation of their friendship. The various works proposed will sail around the notion of dreamlike, moreover, vestiges of their common past will reinforce the coherence of the works as the history that they shared together.
These artists appealed to the fantastic and the marvellous, a world of their own, in order to express their aspirations rather greater than those of the world in which they lived. By each adopting their own style, the 3 artists have used art to escape the reality of a country as beautiful as it is difficult to accept their free spirit.
The red thread of this exhibition is the world of dreams and the fantastic in Lebanon in the 60s and 70s. However, I dwell on the search for the fantastic and seek through this exhibition to highlight the revolution of these artists against moral and even sexual social taboos, their attempt to overcome contradictions through their paintings and even also to rediscover a part of the unconscious man-son that tends to be masked by authority, order and traditional values. Their works will aim to show the public their desire to liberate the spirit, the man and even the art as well as their dream of a better society where the passions of each individual, freed from all repression, harmonize for the good of all ; a world where art, freedom and love reign.
This exhibition is aimed at a very wide audience of the Lebanese population, the sole purpose being to promote a rediscovery of the past through the dreamy eyes of these artists who could easily take the public into the world of wonders. – Lawra Doche Saadé (Curator).
Art residency- Mauricio Yazbek
After over three months of relentless work at MACAM, Brazilian-Lebanese visual artist Mauricio Yazbek will be presenting his in-situ installations in August.
The museum is the perfect place to foster creativity and there is true power in self-expression through art. Children will learn real artistic skills while having fun. Focus and freedom go hand in hand, all in a nurturing, non-competitive and respectful environment.
There is also a lot to do for parents, from having a beverage in our breathtaking outdoor space with a book from our “reading zone”, to wandering through our permanent collection of over 350 sculptures and installations.
For more information, write to firstname.lastname@example.org
The fair is taking place from the 14th – 17th of July, 2022.