Lebanese Archive Project at Four Corners Gallery – preview

A detail from one of Diab Alkarssifi's images taken in Lebanon in 1984. Photograph: Diab Alkarssifi.jpg

A detail from one of Diab Alkarssifi’s images taken in Lebanon in 1984. Photograph: Diab Alkarssifi

When viewing any art form from a region as hostile as the Middle East, it is often hard not to derive meaning that refers at least in part to this area of the world’s troubled history.

Through the medium of photography, Lebanese photojournalist Diab Alkarssifi offers a fascinating insight into one hundred years of his country’s fractious history – a period that included a devastatingly bloody civil war.

Consisting of Alkarssifi’s work and images, the Lebanese Archive Project celebrates a collection that until now has been hidden away from the public eye.

It has been curated by Ania Dabrowska, who, despite having bags stuffed full of negatives and prints to choose from, has managed to condense Alkarssifi’s account of the socio-political history of Lebanon down to a selection of various striking, and, on occasion, truly haunting images.

“The Lebanese Archive project is a hybrid”, says Dabrowska. “It brings together artistic responses to archival material as well as recognising the need for preservation of this heritage”.

With hundreds of thousands of Syrian refugees fleeing into Lebanon, this is a fitting time to record and celebrate the art and culture of the rapidly changing Lebanese people.

Entrance to the exhibition is free, and two conversations with special guest speakers will be held and chaired by Dabrowska on 18 and 25 of September from 6:30pm-8: 30pm.

Speakers will include experts from contemporary fine art, documentary photography, Archives and Middle Eastern culture.

The Lebanese Archive Project runs from 9-27 September at the Four Corners Gallery, 121 Roman Road, E2 0QN