Since the end of the civil war in 1990, Beirut has become a fertile ground for radical and innovative art making and critical thought. Out of Beirut (Modern Art Oxford, 2006) introduces recent work by artists living in the city across the visual arts, film, performance and architecture. Issues of history, memory, identity and the reconstruction of the public and private sphere within the context of globalisation are central to this work. International in scope, the varied forms of practice encompassed by the exhibition raise questions about the role of art and artists within changing societies and the ways in which artistic expression born out of specific contexts can speak of broader realities with which we might identify. The exhibition includes new works made for the exhibition, among them, a powerful new installation by artist and film theorist Jalal Toufic and new photographic and video work by Walid Raad and Akram Zaatari. Artists in the exhibition include Ziad Abillama, Tony Chakar, Ali Cherri, Joana Hadjithomas and Khalil Joreige, Lamia Joreige, Bernard Khoury, Lina Saneh, Rabih Mroué, Walid Raad, Walid Sadek, Jalal Toufic, Paola Yacoub and Michel Lasserre, Akram Zaatari.
Fully illustrated and featuring artists’ writings, interviews and new essays by Simon Harvey, Kaelen Wilson-Goldie and Suzanne Cotter, Out of Beirut offers invaluable insight into artistic practice emerging from the city.