Upon evaluating Le Yacht Club’s initial approach to art, tOD saw the opportunity to intervene and initiate a strategy that would add meaning and culture to the context and local community. tOD created a vision and implemented it by working with a team of advisers and curators, while acting as the creative director to coordinate and compile the art collection; a collection that offers a glimpse into the thriving Lebanese contemporary art and design scene.
Artists presented here have been chosen for their thought provoking work, sense of aesthetics and their multidisciplinary facets. They are some the most promising emerging names in the Middle East and the International contemporary art scenes.
The approach taken has been to make the collection powerful enough to stand alone regardless of the context while it still relates to the activity and the mood of the various spaces and immerses the viewer in an intriguing and daring atmosphere.
By doing so, it can be taken as a first step to a larger corporate collection which can then have a large exposure in various cultural scenes, acting as an “Ambassador” to the Beirut Waterfront.
The collection is divided into three categories: shared spaces (common areas to members), public spaces (outdoor and spaces accessible to larger public) and private spaces (interior of apartments).
- Shared spaces hold the main bulk: far from treating subjects of utopia and nostalgia, here artworks represent a look at the past from a future perspective; it boldly faces history with a desire to move forward in witty, clever, process driven characteristics.
- Public spaces offer the opportunity for guests and external audience to interact with the space. Here the lower level acts as the face, which reveals some of the depth of the collection as a whole, holding a video section whereby a carefully selected range of artists videos will be screened, projected or viewed through peep wholes in order to cater for the needs of the various viewing experiences needed for this crucial medium - now present in all of the important contemporary art collections and which takes a big part of the Lebanese art scene. Another important pointer of the collection is the outdoor piece which plays the role of a generous link between the city, its inhabitants and the project itself.
- Private spaces is a continuation of the subjects tapped on, here though given the level of intimacy of the project, the works selected have a general feel that has a heavier hand on aesthetics and the medium.
Built on rubble, just like centuries old Beirut, the Yacht Club sits on the
remnants of a more recent history, one that is mostly punctuated by turmoil in
all various contexts. Far from being a cemetery, Beirut restlessly picks up on its
leftovers and fragments from its history of ruin and becomes the place where
wild things happen, twisted, braided often formless and ungovernable things.
Its contemporary architecture appears as a surface, attempting to forget and
forgive the layers of its past. A transformed city center flirting with its past
decays and wounds opens up to flocking nostalgic diaspora and tourists hungry
for traces of eventful stories; at its heart the glorified statue by Renato Marino
Mazzacurati erected in memory of the Lebanese nationalists who were hanged
by the Ottomans for revolting during WW 1, perceived by many as a relic of
lost futures after the civil war, which came to replace denigrated monuments by
Youssef Howayek and Salwa Raouda Choucair.
Facing this repository of semi legible history sits the sea, an open and vast space
for the evasiveness of the imagination, offering a dramatic shift in perspective,
one that retains a dubious relationship with the city. The sea allows geopolitical
strength and weaknesses, movement, trade, invasions and natural disasters but
also tales and echoing words. Aware of its unpredictability, the planning of the
city built itself like a shell, turning its back to the shore.
The birth of this multidisciplinary collection in such an atypical place is here to
highlight the relation of Lebanese artists to Beirut and its history. Subjects such
as memory, residues, Mediterranean sea, modernity… subtly appear in the
selected works and translate a desire to act as a clever witness to the waves on
which the city has been riding.
Team: Maria Arida | Adib Dada | Mayssa Fattouh | Tania Ingea
Status: Under Construction
Location: Beirut, LB
Additional Credits: Curator - Mayssa Fattouh
Adviser - Maria Arida