Walid Raad

Biography

Born in 1967 in Chbanieh in the Lebanon, Walid Raad is an artist whose work reflects the troubled history of his country of origin, which he has witnessed since childhood. By collecting, modifying and creating photographs, texts and videos, he plays on the idea of the document as it relates to the civil war and the troubles between communities which have shaken this territory. The artist infuses his depictions with a cloudiness intended to throw doubt on the notion of documentation itself, and posing a profound question about how History is constructed. His working method involves artistic processes such as montage, hijacking and displacement which he uses to create his poetic, semantic distortions against the backgrounds he manipulates.

Since 1999, this work on archives and memory through images has evolved around the Atlas Group, a fictitious organisation which produces, conserves and studies documents about the contemporary history of Lebanon, initiated and activated by Walid Raad. The artist is also a member of the AIF (Arab Image Foundation), an institution based in Beirut since 1997, responsible for collecting and promoting a visual heritage of the Middle East, North Africa and the Arab Diaspora.

Walid Raad lives and works in Beirut (Lebanon) and New York (USA). He teaches at the New York Cooper Union art school. An artist of great international renown, he has exhibited in Europe, in the Middle East and in North America, notably in a major retrospective in 2006 at the Hamburger Banhof (Berlin, Germany) then in 2010 at the Whitechapel Gallery (London, United Kingdom), as well as at the 104 within the Festival d’Automne in Paris (France). He has participated in the Documenta 11 in Kassel, Germany in 2002, at the Venice Biennale (Italy) in 2003, at Home Works; a series of forums about cultural practices held in Beirut (Lebanon). He won the Guggenheim Prize in 2009. He received the Alpert Award in Visual Arts and the Deutsche Borse Photography Prize in 2007 as well as the Camera Austria Award in 2005.

Exhibitions

Selected Solo Shows

2013    Walid Raad – Preface to the First Edition, Musée du Louvre, Paris, France
2012    Scratching on Things I Could Disavow: A History of Art in the Arab World, dOCUMENTA(13), Kassel
           Scratching on Things I Could Disavow, Sfeir-Semler Gallery, Beirut, Lebanon
2011    Walid Raad: Hasselblad Award Winner 2011, Hasselblad Center, Göteborg Museum of Art, Sweden
           Walid Raad: Miraculous Beginnings, Zurich Kunsthalle, Zurich Abstract Possible, Museo Tamayo, Mexico City Walid Raad: Miraculous Beginnings, Bildmuseet, Umeå, Sweden
2010    Scratching on Things I Could Disavow: A History of Art in the Arab World, Le Centquatre, Paris
           Walid Raad: Miraculous Beginnings, Whitechapel Gallery, London
           Sweet Talk: Commissions (Beirut), Camera Austria, Graz, Austria 2009
           Scratching on Things I Could Disavow: A History of Art in the Arab World, Galerie Sfeir-Semler, Hamburg
           Scratching on Things I Could Disavow: A History of Art in the Arab World, Part I, Volume 1, Chapter 1: Beirut (1992-2005), Paula Cooper Gallery, New York
           Scratching on Things I Could Disavow: A History of Art in the Arab World, Part I, Volume 1, Chapter 1: Beirut (1992-2005), Anthony Reynolds Gallery, London
           The Atlas Group. A Project by Walid Raad, PhotoEspaña, The International Festival of Photography and Visual Arts, Reina Sofia Museum, Madrid
           Scratching on Things I Could Disavow: A History of Modern and Contemporary Art in the Arab World, part 1 volume 1_chapter 1: Beirut (1992-2005), Spazio San Francesco, Italy
           Scratching on Things I Could Disavow: A History of Modern and Contemporary Art in the Arab World. REDCAT, Los Angeles
2008    The Dead Weight of a Quarrel Hangs: Selections from the Atlas Group Archive, curated by Mary Leclère, The Glassell School of Art, The Museum of
           Fine Arts, Houston Walid Raad: The Atlas Group Documents, Glassell School of Art, Museum of Fine Arts, Houston
           A History of Contemporary and Modern Arab Art_Part 1: Lebanon 1992-2008, Galerie Sfeir-Semler, Beirut 
           We Can Make Rain But No One Came To Ask, David Winton Bell Gallery, Brown University, Providence, RI
2007    Walid Raad: Screening, Emory University, Atlanta, GA 
           We Decided to Let Them Say “We are Convinced” Twice (It was More Convincing this Way), Paula Cooper Gallery, New    York The Atlas Group (1989-2004): A Project by Walid    Raad, Culturgest, Lisbon
2006    We Decided to Let Them Say “We are Convinced” Twice (It was More Convincing this Way), Henry Art Gallery, Seattle 
           The Atlas Group (1989-2004): A Project by Walid Raad, Hamburger Banhof, Berlin
           Letʼs Be Honest, The Weather Helped, Sfeir-Semler, Hamburg We Can Make Rain, But No One Came to Ask, Ellen Art Gallery, Concordia
           University, Montreal The Dead Weight of a Quarrel Hangs, The Kitchen, New York
2005    We are a Fair People, We Never Speak Well of one Another, Anthony Reynolds Gallery, London
            Funny, How Thin the Line Is: Documents from The Atlas Group Archive, FACT, Liverpool
            I was Overcome with a Momentary Panic, Agnes Etherington Art Centre, Queenʼs University, Kingston, Canada
            I was Overcome with a Momentary Panic, Art Basel 36, Basel
2004    I was Overcome with a Momentary Panic, AGYU, York University, Toronto The Truth Will Be Known, Prefix Institute, Toronto The Truth Will Be Known, Krannert Art Museum, Champaign, IL My Neck is Thinner than a Hair: Engines, Sfeir-Semler, Hamburg

2003    The Complete Fakhouri File, Anthony Reynolds Gallery, London The Truth Will Be Known, La Galerie, Noisy-le-Sec, France

The Truth Will Be Known, World Wide Video Festival, Amsterdam Laokoon 2003, Kampnagel, Hamburg

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