Wednesday, May 27, 2015

#TarekChemaly+Ramadaniyat collaboration launching soon!

Dear friends as the Ramadaniyat Beyroutiya are among us once more, this year, and because they are themed around Old Beirut yours truly has been chosen to do a collaborative work with them throughout the month of June. Indeed, a very complex mathematical algorithm has been built and it will generate 60 pieces of artworks to be shared with you via social media at a rate of two per day and all of them will be collectively exhibited at the Biel venue during this year's Ramadaniyat Beirutiya event. Starting June 1st please stay tuned on my facebook, twitter and g+ for the release of these works. This year #letssharetheworld with the #ramadaniyat !

Domino's Pizza: Failure is not an option

Did you know that in the US Domino's Pizza uses "Failure is an option as a selling Line"? After a streak of PR disasters, Domino's decided to turn tables, ride the wave of defeat that any normal person can relate to, and capitalize on that idea. The line is not used in the area here due to he sensitivity and perhaps unpreparedness of the audience, still, the campaign above does show that failure is not an option. "Heik heik" has no proper translation in English apart from "since it is" which fails to give it the ironic and cute tone of voice it is supposed to be used in. "Since it is your idea", "since you're still dressed", "since you don't like football", and other such notions/excuses to send someone over to get a large pizza for 12,000 LBP. The ads are inundating the town but at least they are cute!

Tuesday, May 26, 2015

MEA: Brilliant Arabic, disastrous English

And this boys and girls is how you turn a brilliant Arabic line into an Anglophone disaster. In Arabic (this is a rough translation) "70 years is youth in the age of a cedar" (سبعين سنة بعمبر بعمر الارزة صبا) in English "Old never. Young forever." How on earth a poetic, very sturdy, lovely sentence migrated to horrible Hallmark territory phrase is beyond me. Pity, the Arabic was indeed very good...

Saturday, May 23, 2015

S'envoyer en l'air (with Liligo)

Research credit: GM
This campaign is not running in Lebanon, but I wish it was. For those of you not francophones "s'envoyer en l'air" means "getting screwed" (not in the sense of having a bad deal, but rather to engage in a sexual act), literally however it means "sending myself up in the air". So these ads above the lines "I am capable of sending myself up in the air in a few seconds" then "I found the most economical way to send myself in the air" and "We like to chose with whom we send ourselves up in the air with" all have the double meaning of "getting screwed/getting myself up in the air".
Now, who wants to be "sent up in the air" with Liligo?

Wednesday, May 13, 2015

"Sous La Mer" video art by Tarek Chemaly now released.

Sous La Mer, the mythical pub of the Phoenicia Hotel... But underneath bubbles of the champagne there was something else lurking. "Sous La Mer", the video art by Tarek Chemaly, investigates a romanticized version of the past in Lebanon, putting archival material in a new interpretation. To watch one hour plus movie fully, please feel free to see the link below:

Wednesday, May 6, 2015

#fargobus opens tonight

Fargo opens tonight at USEK between 5 and 8. An exhibition where pop culture and collective memory become national identity. Do not miss it!

Wednesday, April 29, 2015

Fargo exhibition catalogue now out.


“Fargo”, marque d’un "bus", ou  precisement du "bus de Ain el Roumaneh" ou "bus du 13 Avril" qui fait partie de l'histoire collective des Libanais etant l’incident qui a fait eclater la guerre. "Fargo" est un projet qui met l'accent sur la culture pop comme un élément de pontage au Liban, un moyen de créer un trait d'union entre les gens qui soutiennent des sections politiques antagonistes au lieu d'un vrai livre d'être utilisé comme un manuel dans les écoles (qui n’existe pas encore parce que les politiciens ne se s’ont toujours pas mis d'accord ce qui est arrivé pendant la guerre). Il tente également de soulever la question de ce qui fait vraiment une identité nationale, en particulier en ces temps troublés.

 "Fargo”, a brand for a “bus”, or more specifically the “Ain el Roumaneh’s bus” or “April 13th bus” which has been part of the collective history of the Lebanese being the incident that launched the war to no return. "Fargo" is a project which focuses on pop culture as a bridging element in Lebanon, a way to create a hyphen between people who support antagonistic political sections in lieu of a real book to be used as a manual in schools (which still does not exist because politicians still did not agree what happened during the war). It also tries to raise the question of what really makes a national identity, specifically in troubled times.

فارغو، اسم لـ "بوسطة" أو "بوسطة عين رمانة و" أو "بوسطة 13 نيسان" وهي جزء لا يتجزأ من التاريخ الجماعي اللبناني. "فارغو" هو مشروع يركز على ثقافة البوب كهمزة وصل في لبنان، وسيلة لخلق صلة بين الاشخاص الذين يدعمون جماعات سياسية متنافرة عوضا عن كتاب تاريخ حقيقي لاستخدام هذه الصلة بمثابة دليل في المدارس (التي لا تزال تفتقر الى هكذا مرجع لأن الطبقة السياسية لا تزال لم تتوافق على نسخة واحدة مما حدث خلال الحرب). وهو محاولة أيضا إلى إكتشاف ما يخلق حقا هوية وطنية، وتحديدا في الأوقات العصيبة.