‘The Inhabitants Of Images is based around three images that I encountered on the walls of the city of Beirut. Hundreds of pictures of the martyrs [who died in the 2006 war in Lebanon], all with the same design and bodies, but with different names underneath. It struck me how they were composed and the reality that they presented was very shocking for me. I couldn’t believe that photomontages like this could happen – an image that shows Nasser (former Egyptian lead) and Hariri (former Lebanese Prime Minister) meeting, for example. They’re both dead and never met in life. On the montage they are put together as if they have just finished talking. I keep thinking about how these images were made.
‘I’ve used these images as a pretext to understand more about the socio-political aspect of Lebanon. My approach to this is very simple. I decided to study these images as if they were real, not a photomontage. And that is the approach in my performance. It’s a lecture performance, which means it’s not an academic lecture and it’s not performance. It’s somewhere between the two.’
The Inhabitants of Images by Rabih Mroué, Bidoun Lounge, Art Park, Art Dubai. 8.15pm, Friday, March 20