reACT EXHIBITION

 

The PoP Art Exodus

 

Curator: Alexandra Kollerova 

 

Artist: Mohammad Bassyouni 

 

Exhibition Dates: 1st - 16th June 2018

 

The P21 Gallery is proud to announce The Pop Art Exodus, a new contemporary art exhibition commencing 1st June  2018. The show will be displaying a collection of politically themed digital prints produced by the Lebanese visual artist Mohammad Z. Bassyouni. The exhibition has been put together as a symbolic gesture to commemorate the 70th anniversary of Nakba Day, the day following the announcement of Israeli Declaration of Independence in 1948.

While for some this day represents historical hallmark celebrating the victory after the long-lasting struggle for national independence, for others it marks the beginning of an irreversible catastrophe. ‘The Pop Art Exodus is dedicated to those Palestinian people that have been “kicked out” from their own homeland’, the artist expressed. However, this exhibition does not only demonstrate the general displacement and disruption within the framework of Palestinian nation but also re-narrates the tragic individual stories of those people that have in the past 70 years imoraly lost their personal freedom and livelihood. 

To introduce the subject of the Nakba in more playful and familiar way, the artist chose to draw inspiration for his work from the popular and commercial culture. This artistic technique also known as a phenomenon of Pop Art, emerged in mid 50s as a response to rapidly growing consumerism. Many artists such as, Andy Warhol or Roy Lichtenstein experimented with Pop Art in the past century, discovering new ways through which they were able to produce graphic or emotionally disturbing works without necessarily distressing their audience. When approaching the subject of the Nakba, the artist Mohammad Bassyouni decided to utilise the commercial iconic images in his production for the very same reasons. Logos of ‘Coca-Cola’ or ‘Pringles’ are the ultimate drivers of positive feelings. We are familiar with these products and most of us incline to feel automatically much more comfortable when having them around. The story of the Nakba is therefore not only narrated in the much more tolerating manner but also in the style in which this issue has not yet been explored before. 

Mohammad Z. Bassyouni (1989) is a Lebanese contemporary visual artist who is currently living and working in Sidon.  He has been practising art from the early age, however since he graduated in visual arts at LIU (Lebanese International University) in 2012, Mohammad’s work has been predominantly of a digital character. Although The Pop Art Exodus is Mohammad’s first international solo exhibition, throughout the years, he participated in number of art and photography exhibitions in Beirut and Sidon from which the most known may be for example The Beirut Sign Exhibition in Biel in 2012. 

 

For further exhibition information, press images and interview opportunities, please contact the gallery: info@p21.org.uk, or Alexandra Kollerova: Email: Alex.kollerova@gmail.com

 

A reACT project

The ‘reACT’ program has been established to promote and support emerging and student artists whose work is dedicated to or inspired by the Middle East & Arab world by providing a space within the P21 Gallery for an artistic intervention.

 

Supported by:  WATAN (www.watan-sc.org)