Beirut, 11 October 2018 – Byblos Bank and Kaph Books announced the launch of “On Photography in Lebanon” an art book edited by Clémence Cottard Hachem and Nour Salamé, during an event at the Sursock Museum in Beirut.
This collaborative publication, in which 40 experts share their perspectives on photography in Lebanon, evokes its equally numerous forms of existence while examining techniques, practices, uses, objects, images, histories, and artistic approaches. The publication presents 380 photographs produced between the end of the 19th century and the present day.
Nada Tawil, Head of Group Communication at Byblos Bank, said: “We’re proud of this first-of-its kind book on the history of photography in Lebanon. “On Photography in Lebanon” is a reference and an essential tool to inspire art lovers in general and emerging Lebanese photographers in particular, the latter being at the heart of our photography program.” She added: “Indeed, this perennial initiative for Lebanon’s photographic legacy is an intrinsic part of celebrating our culture.”
For her part Nour Salamé, co-editor of the book said: “This publication comes at a time when the medium of photography is questioned, not only in the Middle East, but worldwide. What is photography? Why is photography? Answers are endless.” She added: “This is why, in this book, we invited several contributors from different backgrounds to share their point of view on photography, and select 1 to 8 images each. The result is 40 windows, research possibilities and lots of inspirations…”
Clémence Cottard Hachem, also co-editor of the book, said: “In both form and content, the book is intended as a tool, to be treated as an object that can itself be questioned, and, at the same time, as a flexible resource offering a multitude of answers to key questions, without being neither exhaustive nor didactic.”
Byblos Bank has been supporting photography as an art form in Lebanon since 2012 as part of its broader mission to revive, sustain, and enrich Lebanon’s cultural heritage. This support is specifically geared towards emerging Lebanese photographers through the Byblos Bank Award for Photography, which has become one of the most prestigious prizes in artistic photography in Lebanon.
Founded in Beirut in 2015, Kaph Books is a publishing house specialized in fine arts and photography from the Middle East. Kaph Books has collaborated with several institutions in the Middle East and in Europe, including Louvre Abu Dhabi, Arab Image Foundation, Saradar Collection, Kunstverein Hamburg and Kunsthalle Mainz. Its books are distributed worldwide and the publishing house regularly takes part in international book fairs, including: New York Art Book Fair, Paris Photo, Unseen Amsterdam, Cosmos Arles Books (Les Rencontres d’Arles), and Sharjah Art Book Fair.