WALID RAAD AND THE ATLAS GROUP AT MOMA

MoMA presents the first comprehensive American survey of the leading contemporary artist Walid Raad, featuring his work in photography, video, sculpture, and performance from the last 25 years. Dedicated to exploring the veracity of photographic and video documents in the public realm, the role of memory and narrative within discourses of conflict, and the construction of histories of art in the Arab world, Raad’s work is informed by his upbringing in Lebanon during the civil war (1975–90), and by the socioeconomic and military policies that have shaped the Middle East in the past few decades.

The exhibition focuses on two of the artist’s long-term projects:The Atlas Group (1989–2004) and Scratching on things I could disavow (2007–ongoing). Under the rubric of The Atlas Group, a 15-year project exploring the contemporary history of Lebanon, Raad produced fictionalized photographs, videotapes, notebooks, and lectures that related to real events and authentic research in audio, film, and photographic archives in Lebanon and elsewhere. Raad’s recent work has expanded to address the Middle East region at large. His current ongoing project, Scratching on things I could disavow, examines the recent emergence in the Arab world of new infrastructure for the visual arts—art fairs, biennials, museums, and galleries—alongside the geopolitical, economic, and military conflicts that have consumed the region.

The exhibition emphasizes the importance of performance, narrative, and storytelling in Raad’s oeuvre. The artist will also present his lecture-performance Walkthrough in MoMA’s Donald B. and Catherine C. Marron Atrium multiple times a week throughout the duration of the exhibition.  Raad moves on along the road he’s been on over decades: Attentive to the way geopolitical conflicts and changes impact the relationship with history, he explores the current perception of tradition. With his purpose-designed installations and actions he presents a visual and narrative reflection on the future of the ‘universal museum’, a concept developed in the West in the late eighteenth century. Shadows, reflections, interstices and optical mystery highlight the poetic nature of his work.

WALID RAAD AND THE ATLAS GROUP
A SURVEY
MUSEUM OF MODERN ART MOMA
NEW YORK
Through 31 January
www.moma.org



UPCOMING
ART & DESIGN FAIRS


ART BASEL 14 JUN/ 17 JUN
FRIEZE LONDON 04 OCT/ 07 OCT

FIAC PARIS18 OCT/ 21 OCT
PARIS PHOTO 08 NOV/ 11 NOV

SCOPE MIAMI 04 DEZ/ 09 DEZ
DESIGN MIAMI 05 DEZ/ 09 DEZ
ART BASEL MIAMI 04 DEZ/ 09 DEZ

Related Reading