Curated by Emmanuel Daydé and produced by: Nadine Saddi Zaccour, ŠamaŠ (2017) is the latest exhibition by Zad Moultaka’s showcasing at the Sursock Museum.
ŠamaŠ is a touring presentation of the Lebanese Pavilion at the 57th Venice Biennial, 2017, which will then go on to be presented in Finland, Norway, the UK, and Australia.
The project conceived by Moultaka, combines visual architecture and sound composition. The artist merges the musical and visual research in a synergy of forms, materials and sounds.
This monumental work is a reflection on the cyclical nature of history; the intertwinement of the past, present, and future; and the subtle violence(s) that frame these constructs. Using visual architecture and sound composition, the work engages in a spatial, temporal, and aural dialogue between sites of conflict, in an attempt to revisit and renegotiate recent events in the region.
To mark the opening of ŠamaŠ, a performance by the chorus of the Antonine University, under the direction of Toufic Maatouk, will take place in the exhibition space on Thursday 31 May, at 18:00.
Speaking on the exhibition, Moultaka said:
‘Within our civilisation, which is becoming lost on the shores of materialism and drowning on the surface of the visible, it is imperative and urgent to question the sacred in the very heart of Man. The project of the Lebanese pavilion for the Venice Biennale intends to be at the centre of this questioning through a spatial, temporal and sound dialogue between Ur in Iraq, Beirut in Lebanon and Aleppo in Syria, sites of terrible violence past and present, full of symbolic power of the Near East. It will take place in the former civilian and military shipyard of the Venetian fleet.
ŠamaŠ is rooted mentally, physically and philosophically in the refusal of the drama that we are witnessing in this solar region of the world that is the Middle East, cradle of eastern and western civilisations. The Arab apocalypse, which threatens to put an end to these civilisations, is not unavoidable. Under Syria’s bombarded skies, one can still glimpse the emergence of the first codes of Babylonian laws and the desire of a wild peace. Today’s Man has been ripped from the soil and fallen down from the sky. Deaf and blind to the essence of things, he is programming his own obliteration, hastening with it, by anxiety, the crumbling of the world…’