Lebanese Artists for Change

Art for Change in Lebanon

Since October 17th, Lebanon has been going through turbulent and exciting times, witnessing a popular uprising fuelled by the hope for systematic change. Artists immediately joined the Lebanese people in their protests, carrying their voices, translating their demands, and expressing their frustrations. From illustrators, to designers, to painters, from street artists to photographers and filmmakers, Lebanese artists today are not only witnesses to times of upheaval, but also help broaden the space for creative and fruitful thinking. Their works embody the widespread desire for a different, better, future, all the while reflecting on the current circumstances with a critical eye.

What came to be dubbed ’The Art of Thawra’ has taken over the Lebanese streets and social media alike, playing a momentous role in spreading the Lebanese people’s message worldwide. Allowing a glimpse into a phenomenon that has only just started, many publications have documented this explosion of radical creativity,including our Lebanese media partners L’Orient-Le Jour, l’Agenda Culturel, Selections,  and An-Nahar,  and leading foreign dailies like Dubai’s The National, to cite only but a few examples from the local and regional press. Some online outlets, such as Art of Thawra, are dedicated to preserving artistic expressions of protest.  
Jamil Molaeb, October 2019, oil on canvas, 60 x 80 cm
BEIRUT ART FAIR wholeheartedly supports this moment of change and salutes the explosion of Lebanese artists’ positive creative endeavors. A core aspect of the fair’s vision, from the very start, was to champion protest art from Lebanon and the MENA regionto enable artists to lift up walls dividing people, and, above all, to promote art for peace. Today, we congratulate and offer our heartfelt encouragements to artists in Lebanon, who once again are proving the power of their sensitivity to herald change through their images, words, and sounds. Meanwhile, Lebanon has also once again shown its commitment to an unfettered freedom of expression that prevails in tumultuous times.
We’re looking forward to our next decade of BEIRUT ART FAIR, starting 17 to 20 September, 2020, where we hope to contribute to opening up a new chapter of Lebanon’s History alongside its artists.

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