Exhibitions at the Rose and Shaheen Saleeby Museum

CURRENT EXHIBITION | “The Arab Nude: The Artist as Awakener”

EXHIBITION OPENING  | Tuesday, March 8, 2016 at 6:00 pm
OPENING Location | Rose and Shaheen Saleeby Museum, Sidani Street, Hamra
Exhibition Duration | March 8, 2016 – August 1, 2016
*The exhibition will be on display concurrently at the AUB Byblos Bank Art Gallery and the Rose and Shaheen Saleeby Museum*
Regular Hours | Tuesday – Saturday  (12:00 – 6:00 pm)
Tel | 013500000 Ext: 4345 | Click here to visit the AUB Art Galleries homepage

The Arab Nude: The Artist as Awakener examines the way in which artists and intellectuals of the Mandate era engaging in a double struggle against imperialism, Ottoman and European, resorted to an ideal form or pictorial device to concretize their visions of Arab modernity. For them, to be “Arab” was as much a matter of ambiguity and ambition as was the quest to be an artist. In fact, both labels required leaps of imagination over local conditions and imperial plans. What claims for identity, community, and political society were invested in the divesting of Arab bodies of their clothes? Our exhibition documents the debates that met the genre of the Nude in exhibition halls and newspapers. Itsituates artistic practices in relation to ongoing, urgent discussions about the meaning of citizenship, urbanity, and internationalism carried out amid movements for women’s rights, pan-Arabism, and various nationalisms, as well as educational reform, militarization, the scouting movement and nudist colonies. Without espousing the role of awakener for artists, our subtitle foregrounds the social,political or cultural motivations for these artists to embrace and adopt the genre of the Nude in their artistic careers.

A One-Day Conference dedicated to the genre of the Nude is being held on March 11, 2016.


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Sigmar Polke’s works are characterized by permanent questioning of the perceived.In the case of the Institute for Foreign Cultural Relations (IFA-exhibition Music from an Unknown Source, this task applies in particular to the analysis of contemporary art. Polke combines seemingly unrelated elements on the surface to express possible answers to related questions. Thus, his art deliberately reflects a multitude of possible interpretations which in turn are seen and interpreted by numerous viewers, giving way to a variety of interpretations.


Al-Musawwirun: Artists before Art envisions a landscape of pictures and objects that coexisted prior to their modernistic division into “fine” and “decorative” or “material culture.” The exhibition puts on display artifacts found today in Lebanon but produced all over the region between the second half of the 19th century to the mid-20th century.


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