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ONE NIGHT ONLY
Existing impressions of sexuality in Arab society often conceal lesser-known alternative subcultures, whose unorthodox and taboo lifestyles have been documented by Lebanese artists from the 1960’s onwards. At the time, Lebanon had been a space for exercising freedoms, bodily and otherwise, where all fetishes and desires could be imagined and met. This bold legacy is inherent in the work of the five artists who are part of the exhibition One Night Only, a visual exploration of fetish and intimacy through painting and photography.
The exhibition follows an artistic tradition that embodies prevalent sexualities, and explores the resurgence of interest around this topic. The works bring questions around fears of dominance, subservience, and body image to the fore. Through their stories, they reveal themes of queerness, pornography, and voyeurism, informed by “Arab” bodies which inspires a multilayered controversial approach, in contrast to the typical portrayals of nudes in throughout art history.
One Night Only is a glimpse into these lives, unearthing the freedoms of today, while reappropriating and celebrating a heritage of sexuality among Lebanese contemporary artists.