The August Show
Let's Talk About Red
Mohamad Kanaan



August 24 – September 1, 2017

The Beirut Art Residency is pleased to present Mohamad Kanaan as the featured artist of the 2017 August Show. In partnership with
Société Générale de Banque au Liban, the aim of the August Show is to support the production and development of the work of an emerging Lebanese artist through an exhibition. The artist is selected based on the application submitted following an Open Call. Mohamad Kanaan’s presentation titled 'Let’s Talk About Red' will investigate the relationship between the viewer, sculpture and sound. His multifaceted site-specific installation draws on a tribulation which irrevocably impacted Kanaan’s family dating back to the 1980s. 

In 1984 Anwar Abou Rich, Kanaan’s mother, walked into her house only to find a stream of blood swallowing the tiles of her home in Cornish El Mazraa after her mother was tragically shot in the head by a stray bullet during the Lebanese Civil War. In the same way, every year the Abraham River dyes itself red according to the myth of Adonis who was said to have been killed on its banks. These two streams of blood became part of the landscape of Kanaan’s childhood whilst growing up in Lebanon. 

The environment which Kanaan has created for this exhibition draws on these ‘legends’ and ‘myths’ while incorporating conventions of furniture to address anatomy, memory, and identity. While each component confronts a different sense, collectively Kannan's aim is to “echo viewers’ relationships to Lebanon’s recent histories”.

Mohamad Kanaan was born in Beirut in 1989 where he currently lives and works. In Kanaan's practice, art is an extension of architecture. His work consists of little feelings, compartmentalized affects, and repressed emotions. Poetics guide his approach to furniture and architectural forms; maintaining a romantic and tragic anticipation of the bodies that will interact with the work. Kanaan received his MFA from the Institute of Chicago in 2016 after completing his BA in Architecture at the American University of Beirut in 2012. Recent group exhibitions include “Noche de Cortos” Nixon Gallery, Mexico City (2017), “A sudden and peculiar pleasure” Mana Contemporary, Chicago (2017) and “We Died and Here We Are” Beirut Art Center, Beirut (2016).


The Daily Star - War, blood, flowers and other myths
Mohammad Kanaan, une histoire de famille... et de rouge - L'Orient Le Jour
Blood and Myth: What we leave unsaid - An-Nahar