The trend got going in 2010 with the launch of the Menasart Fair, which focused on work from the
The Beirut Photo Fair was launched in 2012 and, if all goes according to plan, it will hold its third edition this year at Karantina's Artheum. The same venue has also played host to the Syrian
Since Wednesday, the space has hosted a third marketplace for contemporary art objects: the Contemporary Beirut Global Art Fair.
The new fair includes work by artists from
A sense of dÉjÀ vu may strike some patrons as they step into the CBGAF, as some of these works have been displayed in
The large mixed-media canvases of
Known for his technique of painting the background before his foreground figures, Hedayat's works depict scenes in which animals and humans mingle, linked to one layer by white paint. Hedayat's technique enables onlookers to read the dynamism of his work, as though it were moving in front of one's eyes.
Among the most interesting works on show from
In "Wounded" and "The Substitutes," onlookers find hands abstracted from their body, a coat deprived of its owner and an empty chair. There is a patina of the paranormal about Grigorian's otherwise realistic depictions, as though the works were odes to the dead.
Though the fair includes displays from various galleries from around town, Contemporary Beirut also includes a few outstanding works from artists never before exhibited in
The talented German artist
George Lilanga, from
Three international photographers have work on show at the fair –
Khayata is concerned with the harsh conditions currently being endured in his country – embodied in the fragility and sadness of the central female figure in his works.
For her part, Anid applies paint on vintage images in a manner that recalls
In Shimonishi's "I'm on Earth" series, on the other hand, the Japanese artist finds irony in placing her lens close to the ground.
The Indonesian, Senegalese and Tanzanian works chosen for the fair all share an interest in juxtaposing place the dichotomy between tradition and modernity – a point of view that's not alien to the work of Middle Eastern artists.
Easily salable media – canvasses and sculpture – are the focus of this event, but there are also a few installation works by Lebanese and Syrian artists.
The works on display in Contemporary Beirut offer a passable overview of today's global art scene. Although several of the pieces will not be new to any local gallery-goers, some may find in the fair an opportunity to glimpse what's been missed, and to discover those "new" artists who give the fair a breath of fresh air.
Most Popular Stories
- Islamic State Obliterating Cultural Landmarks in Mosul
- The 2014 Fastest-Growing 100
- 'Lucy's' Super Powers Tops 'Hercules' at Box Office
- Boehner Says Impeachment Talk Is Democrat Scam
- You're So Vain: Microsoft to Launch First 'Selfie Phone'
- VW Site Could Mean Another 2,000 Jobs for Chattanooga
- RV Sales See Highest Increase Post Great Recession
- U.S. Home Price Gains Slow for 6th Month in a Row
- Report: China to Declare Qualcomm a Monopoly
- Insecticides Permeate U.S. Food, Water Supply