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Thursday 28 November 2019

Photography Exhibition Referencing Memory & Mythology Of The Lebanese War Goes On Show In Brighton

A new photography space in Brighton open twenty-four hours a day for passers-by to experience an installed artwork by emerging photographers - Fabrica's In Between Gallery - will display a work that addresses the conflict in the Middle East; it's memory, narrative and mythology. The exhibition opens today, Thursday 28 November.
Credit Julien Bonnin

Following an open call, from Fabrica, Spectrum and Brighton Photo Fringe, a work by French photographer Julien Bonnin (b.1983, La Rochelle, lives in Paris) has been chosen for the gallery space, a three metre x four metre window facing one of Brighton's busiest thoroughfares. 

The work will be seen by an estimated 400-500k people during its installation from this winter until March 27 2020. 

The work, Studio Aftermath (2016), revolves around the idea of 'constructed realities' and the practice inherent to studio photography, with its background and kitsch props.

 Each set is an hand-made diorama, re- enacting a specific memory/fantasy from a photographer that had to flee from his studio and Beirut during the Lebanese War.

In this series the artist investigates and recreates potential narratives encompassing the imagery and mythology of War as well as the codes or stereotypes related to history and cultural appropriation in the Middle East.  


The image depicts the aftermath of a car-bomb suicide attack, a scene that has been widely exposed and disseminated in mass medias to embody the violence of conflicts in these regions.

The photo (article picture) is part of a series called Relics and represents a visual exploration into the processes of dissemination and preservation concerning found materials and archival pictures in Beirut during the Lebanese War.

Julien Bonnin says: 

"A place like Beirut, torn between its traumatic past and its race for modernity, embodies the metaphor of the 'image-ruin'. 

"The city itself, the gaping scars of the aftermath bore by the abandoned buildings, the inhabitants or the traces of their existence; all convey and revive a moment that collapsed, was hidden or buried. 

"It is these glimpses and their persistence that I am trying to grasp, to investigate their aura and the almost mythical aspect of their circulation, both in terms of time and heritage; a process initiated with the manipulation, the re-organization of the archive and of found photographs, to summon new voices and new stories."


Liz Whitehead, Fabrica Director, added: 

"In Between Gallery gives Fabrica the unique opportunity to show thought-provoking, powerful images to audience directly on the streets of Brighton, giving a very visible prominent platform to images that might not otherwise be seen. 

"Our aim is to engage with the issues that contemporary photographers are dealing with and show them in forms of representation of their choosing."

Fabrica's In Between Gallery is situated at 40 Duke Street, Brighton, BN1 1AG. CLICK HERE for more info.

by: Mike Cobley




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