22 October 2014
Walid Raad (1967) was born and raised in Lebanon in the years of the Civil War, and as a boy thought that in the future he was destined to work as a war correspondent. After all, the conflict was right there, at his front door: impossible to avoid. Instead he has turned into one of the most imaginative contemporary artists in the Middle East and the MADRE (Museo d’Arte Contemporanea Donnaregina) in Naples has decided to devote a solo exhibition to him, anticipating the MoMA in New York, which is working on a retrospective for 2015. The exhibition in Naples, like all of Raad’s work, is an exploration of the theme of conflict in the everyday, personal and collective dimension of the individual. The show opens with Scratching on Things I Could Disavow (2007-ongoing), in which Raad asks himself and us about the presumed political and cultural neutrality of museums, a question prompted by the emergence of the new art scene in the Arab world and the controversy stirred by the opening of branches of the Louvre and Guggenheim in Abu Dhabi. On the third floor, on the other hand, we find his most unsettling project, The Atlas Group (1989-2004): a collection of photographic, textual and audiovisual documents on the war in Lebanon where nothing is what it seems: the truthfulness of the facts, the social implications, the impact on a history that is being pieced together now. Because “seeing is believing” is no longer enough.
Walid Raad, Preface / Prefazione
A cura di Alessandro Rabottini e Andrea Viliani
11 ottobre 2014 > 19 gennaio 2015