In this exhibit, we showcase over a hundred photos from our recently acquired collection of the work of artist photographer Manoug Alemian (1918 – 1994). The exhibit offers a rich and varied sampling from Manoug’s oeuvre, ranging across dates (1940s – 1970s), subjects (portraits, landscapes, festivals, crafts, etc.) and media (silver gelatin, color prints, negatives and transparencies). It is no exaggeration to state that Manoug's photographic oeuvre, much like a magic lantern, transports the viewer into a realm from which an iconic image of pre-war Lebanon, one that influenced an entire generation, sprang. Using his keen photographic eye and a distinctive “artistic-documentary” style, Manoug offered a seamless combination of mimesis and metaphor: the landscapes, archeological sites, crafts, portraits, and visual juxtapositions that constitute Manoug's photographic art helped construct and reinforce a way of seeing the Lebanese nation that came to pervade the psyche not just of the Lebanese, but of a wider audience of Arab and international viewers.
Exhibit Curators: Samar Mikati, Marwan Sabban, Mervat Kobeissi and Kaoukab Chebaro.
Acknowledgments: Many thanks go to Dalya Nouh and to Hana Sleiman for their support in research and technical matters; to the Digital Unit at the AUB Libraries, especially Elie Kahale and Youssef Doughan for their unwavering support; and to Sara Jawad for her hard work on the design and other matters. Many thanks also go to Sonia Alemian and to Ashod Alemian for their great support.