Syrian Art – Narratives of Hope, Despair and Resilience

Nearly six years after coming to Beirut in significant numbers, many Syrian artists have claimed new segments of the city’s artscape, although they have always been part of the Lebanese art scene, especially visual artists.

When galleries started to close in Damascus and the conflict escalated, Syrian artists moved to Beirut, which provided more freedom of expression, a receptive audience and the possibility to make some money from art.

However, although Syrian artists typically knew Beirut, most faced considerable hardship – and racism – given the strained Syrian-Lebanese relations and the small, competitive art market. Their presence has given the art scene a boost and provided more visceral and nuanced perspectives.

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