Looking for a role in Beirut



Between the documentation of problematic character and the documentation of a city, a fine line through which the Lebanese artist Salah Suli (1962), who lived in Berlin since the eighties. At the exhibition, which continues until the 25th of this month in the Ajyal Gallery in Beirut, the title highlights the seven lives of M. Said.

So we go in different directions through the memory of a person, it reaches before 1958 and then brings us back to the present time and brings contradictory situations together: cruelty and tenderness, courage and range, faith and absurdity. Through them we discover a city that, like its characters, carries many contradictions and cooperates with it.

M. Said, whose name appears in (inspired by the hero's name of the novel "Migration to the North" by Saleh Saleh), had fought for more than half a century "Windmills". Through the exhibition we know that his life choices are so numerous that it is no longer possible to limit him to characterization, and his behavior has seen patterns that are difficult to sum up, so that it is difficult for someone to have a positive or negative attitude. to assume. This experience is described by photos, prints, video art and processing.

100c4bfc73.jpgThe young man, who won several championship championships, came to Beirut in 1958, but he was only sixteen years old. Then he jumped to the other side, accompanied by former Prime Minister Rashid Solh. Then I experienced M. Said the arms trade during the Lebanese civil war, and then, in another strange leap, dedicated to the production of films. According to Souli, he has a groundbreaking experience in this area, otherwise there would have been no Lebanese film production during that war.

In this biography, the Lebanese artist also refers to the Lebanese Ministry of Tourism. Said was successful in the field of film production in 1983. Years later, with the establishment of the Amnesty Law in Lebanon, the man withdrew from his artistic activities and managed only a cafe in Beirut.

These life orientations, which appear to be governed by a certain temperament, can only be an example of a general case of searching for a role in life, which Solly tries to highlight in the equipment of the exhibition. Happy with the complete archive of the phase of more than half a century, in interaction with many people who have seen and lived in Beirut and his transformations that do not stop. The more we believe that the exhibition is dedicated to a certain character – as it appears in the title – Soli tells us that everything in this character of opposites, negatives and positives are elements beyond the individual. Ultimately, it is a generation that has witnessed the turmoil of politics and society in its country, and these factors are reflected in everyone's life and agility.

36eac485dd.jpgFor example, the exhibition presents us in visual mazes and other stories conveyed by Soli through a documentary mix of installation projects and videos of five to seven minutes, as well as photographs of cinemas that were active in the past. are now leaving.

This exhibition, like the previous art projects presented by Soli, brings us a deep-seated obsession with transcendence, and its restoration is poured into artworks with multiple bearings and ores. Moreover, his vision of Beirut shows the war in which he grew up and the search within it for the desired peace.

Not only does the Lebanese artist document the past. This is where his game lies, because each time he succeeds in attracting the present through him to send the viewer to a space of conscious awareness of the visual and mental interpretations of the elements that he emits there and there, especially the monologues appearing in the videos he has chosen, a summary of many internal conflicts, urban conflicts and life in general.

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