Walid Raad

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Walid Raad

Work from The Atlas Group and Scratching on things I could disavow.

“Walid Raad’s first major exhibition in a French museum covers two of his long-term projects: The Atlas Group (1989-2004) and Scratching on Things I could Disavow (2007-ongoing).

The Atlas Group (1989 – 2004) was a project Raad initiated in 1989 – or so his title suggests – and concentrated on the political, social, psychological and aesthetic dimensions of the wars in Lebanon. The Atlas Group (1989 – 2004) comprises an archive of found and created visual, recorded and written documents Raad attributed to historical and imaginary characters. The Atlas Group (1989 – 2004) is also an enquiry into the documentary process itself, into the kinds of facts that can constitute historical narratives.

Since 2007, Walid Raad has been developing another project titled Scratching on things I could disavow. His project in part engages the emergence of new art economies and museums in the Arab world, the increase in the visibility of Arab artists, patrons and collectors, as well as the marked interest expressed by Western countries and institutions in setting up annexes of major western museums (Louvre and Guggenheim) in the Middle East. Moreover and by leaning on Jalal Toufic’s writings, and more specifically his concept of the “The withdrawal of tradition past a surpassing disaster,” Raad also considers the short and long-term material and immaterial effects of the various wars that have consumed the Middle East over the past few decades. Raad’s works address these less visible and traumatic (non-psychological) effects, and their profound impact on tradition.” – Carré d’Art

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