Walid Raad is an artist from Lebanon whose project/collaboration, The Atlas Group, has been critically acclaimed in recent years. Raad investigates and documents the history of Lebanon through the archive.
” Established by artist Walid Raad, The Atlas Group is an imaginary foundation whose aim is to research, document, study and produce audio, visual and literary artefacts that shed light on the contemporary history of Lebanon. Described as ‘re-igniting our curiosity in the truth’, the project runs a convoluted line between fact and fiction, replacing unitary power with fragmented assemblage. In part the work exploits the notional understanding of the gallery or institution as the site of venerated liberal truths. How are we meant to view the work? The multiple images of violent display are reminiscent of Gertrude Stein’s assertion that ‘ugliness repeated becomes beauty’. This leaking oil heart is now a stand-in for a struggle that is in part unknowable.” (source)
FYI: For those readers in the LA area, Walid Raad will be doing a presentation from the archive Wednesday night at REDCAT, downtown LA.