The Custodian: Artistic Visionaries: Inaya Hodeib

Rima Nasser: Can you tell us how your relationship with the Dalloul Art Foundation began and your perspective on it as an artist?

Inaya Hodeib: I connected with Basel online in 2014, he reached out with a “hello I love your work”. My first thought was “hmmmm, I have heard of that name before!”. I answered and ever since we have been in close contact.

At first Basel expressed interest in my canine series, and as we got to know each other more, he supported both my themes in painting and sculptures. He was the first patron to commission a canine portrait, and the first to acquire one of my sculptures. I find it difficult to put our connection into words as we share personal and professional interests. Our absolute love for dogs, especially Temi, Ellie and Simsim, and future work plans are two of the topics we often discuss. There is a lot of trust between us, and I am able to freely express and discuss my thoughts and ideas about work with no reservation. I believe Basel’s direct and clear approach to communication means that, for me an artist with a lot of social anxiety, I never have to read between the lines, attempt to guess what is meant, worry about something missed or stress over potential misunderstanding. Communication is one of Basel’s great characteristics, augmented by his worldly experience, open minded approach and ability to absorb and understand the people he interacts with.

This trust is often reflected in my work for Basel and DAF in the form of total freedom. We are on the same page, and I feel comfortable enough to ask for advice, suggestions, and guidance as needed. This empowers me to explore different subjects and approaches freely and with confidence.

RN: The Dalloul Foundation has been a key supporter of your artistic career. Could you elaborate on the significance of their support in terms of your creative journey and development as an artist?

IH: DAF currently has more than a hundred of my works in several mediums. This includes sketches documenting products and curiosities from the 80s and 90s in Beirut. This series is part of a much larger project called Stories from B Town in which I try to archive the history of the familiar, from Tatra and Nido cans to sweets, portraits of people, and even shops. The project is my work to document, immortalise, and safekeep certain memories of my city, as it changes rapidly year after year.

RN: Basel Dalloul, as a prominent figure in the art world, has been instrumental in supporting emerging and established artists. How has his vision and commitment impacted your work and artistic aspirations?

IH: The works from the series currently at DAF started as a 20-piece collection. I showed Basel the initial portion and asked for his personal experience and memories of the period, this discussion brought back more memories that I had forgotten about including Yes 3 bwahad a very popular commercial that evolved during the 80s and 90s. We kept bouncing ideas and memories. I felt incredibly motivated to collect as many products as possible, which led to reaching out to all my contacts including family to build a portfolio of images and ideas of what we call “hratee2” or memorabilia going all the way back to the 50s. This transformed the series into a massive collaboration.

RN: The foundation’s support often extends beyond financial assistance. Can you share specific examples of how their mentorship or resources have influenced your artistry and career trajectory?

IH: The support offered by DAF and Basel personally goes beyond financial support and art collecting. Basel’s and DAF’s patronage plays the role of sponsor and advocate for the expansion and preservation of the arts and culture sector in Lebanon and the wider Middle East. This is no easy feat, as recognising the importance of an artwork, its timelessness and relevance, and supporting the artist behind it is a monumental task.



SELECTIONS is a platform for the arts, focusing on the Arab World.

Selections editorial presents a quarterly print magazine and weekly online publication with high quality content on all subjects related to Art and Culture. Full of world-leading artworks, exquisite brand imagery, original creative illustrations and insightful written articles.
Selections Viewing Rooms presents carefully curated online art shows aiming not only to shed light on contemporary art executed by living artists, but also for viewers to buy contemporary fine art, prints & multiples, photography, street art and collectibles.
Discover the previous and current shows here.
Cultural Narratives foundation is an extensive collection that is travelling the world by leading established and emerging talents aiming to reflect the culture of the region in their works.


‘Unveiling the Shadows of the Past: The Hidden Icon of Photography in Africa’ by J. K. Bruce-Vanderpuije at Efie Gallery Dubai

Efie Gallery announces its representation of the estate of the late Ghanaian photographer J. K. Bruce-Vanderpuije, a pivotal yet under-recognised figure in 20th-century African photography. Ahead of the solo exhibition which is taking place at Efie Gallery Dubai from 12…

Artistic Unity: Art in the UAE: Interview with Art Dubai’s Benedetta Ghione

This article appeared in The Artistic Unity Issue #67 that was dedicated to the art scene in the UAE in which we unravel the threads of unity by exploring the perspectives of various stakeholders within the UAE’s art community. Through…

‘Gauze’ by Hazem Harb at Tabari Artspace

Tabari Artspace joyfully announces the solo exhibition “Gauze” by Palestinian visual artist Hazem Harb, curated by Munira Al Sayegh. This exhibition is a significant milestone for the gallery, celebrating its 20th anniversary as a trailblazer in promoting Middle Eastern and…

The Custodian: Artistic Visionaries: Hady Sy

Rima Nasser: Can you briefly describe your relationship with the Dalloul Foundation and how their support has influenced your artistic career? Hady Sy: My relationship with DAF starts primarily with the personal friendship that I have with Basel Dalloul that…

‘No Title’ by Fadi Yazigi at Galerie Tanit Beirut

Galerie Tanit Beirut presents ‘No Title’ by Fadi Yazigi taking place from January 10, 2024 – February 16, 2024. Spanning various mediums, including paintings, sculptures, and reliefs, Fadi Yazigi’s artworks share a thematic cohesion, predominantly centred on everyday life in…

Artistic Unity: Art in the UAE. Interview with Munira Al Sayegh

This article appeared in The Artistic Unity Issue #67 that was dedicated to the art scene in the UAE in which we unravel the threads of unity by exploring the perspectives of various stakeholders within the UAE’s art community. Through…

february 2024

24oct(oct 24)09:0017feb(feb 17)09:00Growing Kopi, Drinking Qahwa; Stories of Coffee in Qatar and Indonesia

26oct(oct 26)09:0005mar(mar 5)09:00'MEHDI MOUTASHAR: INTROSPECTION AS RESISTANCE'

10nov09:0010mar09:00Armenia Contemplating the sacred