Studio Aftermath, referencing the memory and mythology of the Lebanese war, is on show at In Between Gallery now.
The never-before seen work by Julien Bonnin addresses conflict in the Middle East.
It is on show in the window of Fabrica gallery Brighton until mid March 2020.
“This strong and vibrant work will allow viewers to experience a powerful image as they go about their everyday lives in the city,” said Spectrum director Hazel Watts.
“Julien Bonnin’s work looks at stories specific to the Middle East but whose meanings are universal.”
Studio Aftermath (2016) revolves around the idea of ‘constructed realities’ and the practice inherent to studio photography, with its background and kitsch props.
Each set is a hand-made diorama, reenacting a specific memory/fantasy from a photographer that had to flee from his studio and Beirut during the Lebanese War.
Part of the Relics series, it represents a visual exploration into the processes of dissemination and preservation of found materials and archival pictures in Beirut during the Lebanese War.
Bonnin investigates and recreates potential narratives encompassing the imagery and mythology of war as well as the codes or stereotypes related to history and cultural appropriation in the Middle East.
Studio Aftermath depicts the aftermath of a car-bomb suicide attack – a scene widely exposed and disseminated in mass media to embody the violence of conflicts in these regions.
“A place like Beirut, torn between its traumatic past and its race for modernity, embodies the metaphor of the ‘image-ruin’,” said Bonnin.
“The city itself, the gaping scars of the aftermath bore by the abandoned buildings, the inhabitants or the traces of their existence, all convey and revive a moment that collapsed, was hidden or buried.
“It is these glimpses and their persistence that I am trying to grasp.
“To investigate their aura and the almost mythical aspect of their circulation, both in terms of time and heritage; a process initiated with the manipulation, the re-organization of the archive and of found photographs, to summon new voices and new stories.”
In Between Gallery
When there is no large-scale exhibition in Fabrica’s main space, the window facing Duke Street is transformed into In Between Gallery.
The aim is to present photographic work by UK-based artists who consider themselves to be early to mid-career.
Hundreds of thousands of people will pass Studio Aftermath throughout its installation.
The winter programme was an open call.
“In Between Gallery gives Fabrica the unique opportunity to show thought-provoking, powerful images to audience directly on the streets of Brighton, giving a very visible prominent platform to images that might not otherwise be seen,” said Liz Whitehead from Fabrica.
“Our aim is to engage with the issues that contemporary photographers are dealing with and show them in forms of representation of their choosing.”
Spectrum Photographic printed Studio Aftermath to Blue Back media.