Walid Raad

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Tuesday, April 25, 6:00 p.m.
The Art Institute of Chicago, Rubloff Auditorium
230 S. Columbus Dr. 

Walid Raad’s work explores how historical events in the Middle East have affected the creation, exhibition, and experience of art in the region and abroad. He is well known for The Atlas Group, a 15-year project between 1989 and 2004 about the contemporary history of Lebanon. The collection of documents archived by Raad presents a fictional universe where the hysterical symptoms of the Lebanese wars are preserved and scrutinized. In the words of critic, Kaelen Wilson-Goldie, the works “function not as emblems of fact or scraps of evidence to support the assertions of history, but rather as traces, as symptoms, as strange structural links between history, memory, and fantasy.” Raad’s other ongoing projects include Scratching on Things I Could Disavow and Sweet Talk: Commissions (Beirut). His books include Walkthrough, The Truth Will Be Known When The Last Witness Is Dead, My Neck Is Thinner Than A Hair, Let’s Be Honest The Weather Helped, and Scratching on Things I Could Disavow.

Raad’s solo exhibitions include the Louvre, Paris; Museum of Modern Art, New York; Kunsthalle Zürich; Whitechapel Art Gallery, London; Festival d’Automne, Paris; Kunsten Festival des Arts, Brussels, and the Hamburger Bahnhof, Berlin. His works have also been shown in documenta 11 and 13, Germany; 50th Venice Biennale; 2000 and 2002 Whitney Biennial, New York; 31st São Paulo Biennial; 14th Istanbul Biennial; Home Works 1 and 3, Beirut; and numerous other museums, biennials, and venues in Europe, the Middle East, Asia, and the Americas.

Raad is also the recipient of the ICP Infinity Award; Hasselblad Award; Guggenheim Fellowship; Alpert Award in Visual Arts; Deutsche Börse Photography Prize; Camera Austria Award; and the Rockefeller Fellowship, among other grants, prizes, and awards.

Paula Cooper Gallery

Sfeir-Semler Gallery

“Walid Raad’s Unreality Show Spins Middle Eastern History as Art,” New York Times, by Holland Cotter

The Atlas Group

“Artists in Conversation,” Bomb Magazine, by Alan Gilbert

“In ICA show, Walid Raad Dazzles with Artful Fictions,” Boston Globe, by Sebastian Smee


Walid Raad / The Atlas Group, Let's be honest, the weather helped_NATO, 1998, archival color inkjet print, one of a series of 17 prints, 18 1/4 x 28 1/4 inches. © Walid Raad. Courtesy Paula Cooper Gallery, New York Walid Raad, Preface to the third edition_Acknowledgment (Homme), 2014, 3D print plaster composite, paint, 11 x 8 1/2 x 5 inches, Edition 1 of 3, 1 AP © Walid Raad. Courtesy Paula Cooper Gallery, New York Walid Raad and SITU Studio, Those that are near. Those that are far., 2016, Stommeln Synagogue, Pulheim-Stommeln, Germany June 10 —September 25, 2016 Sponsored by: Kunststiftung NRW and Landschaftsverband Rheinland. © Walid Raad. Courtesy Paula Cooper Gallery, New York