Youssef Abdelké shows black and white in a solo exhibition

Galerie Tanit Beirut presents a solo exhibition by artist Youssef Abdelké.

The exhibit is a journey through the experiences of artist Youssef Abdelké’s works from 2010 to 2023.

Youssef Abdelké’s artwork will be on display at the Galerie Tanit

Alain Jouffroy describes Abdelké’s work ” A keen observer of the living phenomenon, a precise, rigorous, and methodical engraver, but also a poet in images, Abdelké first represented human groups with masked heads, actors in search of an author, like the characters of Pirandello. He placed them in the night, a terribly dark night, where death and monsters were everpresent. This was his “human comedy,” a tragic comedy in which the grotesque was never excluded.”

Youssef Abdelké Fish 2023, Charcoal on Paper

“Abdelké’s fish is not just a fish: it’s an arrow, a radiance, a breath, a whispered call to life. But it’s also a fish, I don’t know, maybe: a salmon, a sardine, a pike. But it flies like a bird in the night where we find ourselves plunged once again.”

About the Artist

Youssef Abdelké was born in Qamechli, north-east of Syria in 1951. At 15, he arrived with his family to Damascus where he studied at the Faculty of Fine Arts and graduated in 1976. In the late 1970s, Abdelké was arrested for nearly two years because of his political positions. After graduating, he went to France, “attracted by anything that might satisfy his burning thoughts of painting.” In Paris, he graduated from the École Nationale Supérieure des Beaux- Arts in 1986 and later from Paris XIII as a doctoral student in Fine Arts in 1989. Growing up in a very political family, his work was always permeated by his political agenda. He lived and worked in Paris from 1981 before returning to Damascus in 2005.

After 25 years of compelled exile and of being forbidden to go back to Syria, it was finally possible for him to go back to Damascus in 2005 and organize a large exhibition there. Since 2010, his Syrian passport was confiscated and he could neither exit the country nor return to France where his wife and daughter live. Youssef Abdelké was arrested again in Syria on the 18th of July 2013 by the regime forces, and liberated 5 weeks later on the 22nd of August that same year.
The works of Youssef Abdelké are in a large number of museums and institutions, including The British Museum in London, UK, the Institut du Monde Arabe in Paris, France, The National Museum of Kuwait and the Amman Museum of Modern Art in Jordan.

A solo exhibition with works from 2010 to 2023 from Wednesday October 18 to November 23 at Galerie Tanit.