THE PERFECT ARAB ARTIST @ Arab Cartoon Festival DE WARANDE - LUIFELZAAL Belgium by Sirine Fattouh

From October 6 till 21 the second edition of Arab Cartoon Festival will again present a multidisciplinary program that outsteps the borders of the visual arts, and focuses on ‘cartoons’, not only in form, but also in spirit or tactics. 

The second edition revolves around the theme of ‘Cracks in the society’. It basically focuses both on cracks between Arab and western societies (including the EU) and cracks within those diverse societies. Several cultural and political situations and circumstances created small and larger ‘cracks’ between and within societies. Mainstream media are stimulating populist speech that incites hate, and put the spotlights on actions that ‘crack’ societies into small(er) segments (divisions) which are – so it seems – on the verge of clashing. All this, makes us forget how we could be more connected and less scared of each other. The festival looks into different ways of (re)connecting through the arts. Cartoons deliver ways to critically rethink what alternative circumstances are needed to bridge the differences between ‘us’ and ‘them’.

On display are two original series of personalized national and international postage stamps that Fattouh produced in 2014. One of the countries is Belgium.
The Perfect Arab Artist, as an art installation, critically deals with what is expected of an Arab artist. As such it also refers to the image(s) that Arab artists distribute of themselves in order to answer to an existing demand in the art market. Sirine Fattouh is a Lebanese artist born in 1980 and living between Paris and Beirut. Her work, as an artist and researcher, consists of examining the consequences of violence and displacements on people’s identities.

15 November 2017 - 20 May 2018 HOME BEIRUT. SOUNDING THE NEIGHBORS by Sirine Fattouh

Curated by Hou Hanru and Giulia Ferracci

This project focusing on Beirut is the third chapter of the “Mediterranean Trilogy” through which the MAXXI has been examining the interaction between the artistic communities of Europe and the Middle East, that is prompting the birth of a new trans-Mediterranean culture, critically important for the global landscape of artistic creation. 

Home Beirut. Sounding the Neighbors intends to put forward some of the most important trends of creative explorations of the contemporary reality intensively incarnated in the city’s development and destiny.

It will present some 30 artists, architects, filmmakers, musicians, dancers, researchers, activists with their diverse forms of expressions negotiating between critical reflections of recent history of conflicts, through archiving and re-enacting memories, and prospections of the future, through attempts of urban transformation and global outreaching, periodically interrupted by urgent problems and frustrations of the present.

It will be structured in several sections reflecting efforts to build homes in a highly complicated urban context to accommodate different intellectual claims and artistic imaginations as well as various political positions.

Ziad Abillama, Etel Adnan, Tamara AlSamerai, Mounira Al Solh, Haig Aivazian, Ziad Antar, Caline Aoun, Marwa Arsanios, Tarek Atoui, Vartan Avakian, Eric Baudelaire, Tony Chakar, Ali Cherri, Roy Dib, Fouad Elkoury, Sirine Fattouh, Laure Ghorayeb, Ahmad Ghossein, Mona Hatoum, Joana Hadjithomas, Khalil Joreige, Hatem Imam, Lamia Joreige, Mazen Kerbaj, Bernard Khoury, Walid Raad, Marwan Rachmaoui, Graziella Rizkallah Toufic, Stéphanie Saadé, Sharif Sehnaoui, Rania Stephan, Jalal Toufic, Paola Yacoub, Akram Zaatari.