Akram Zaatari : Tomorrow Everything Will Be Alright

Galpão VB, São Paulo, Brazil
03 Sep 2016 - 03 Dec 2016

Akram Zaatari : Tomorrow Everything Will Be Alright

Akram Zaatari, Beirut Exploded View, 2014. Video installation

Associação Cultural Videobrasil announce the first-ever solo show of Lebanese artist Akram Zaatari in Brazil, spanning Galpão VB’s entire 800 square meters. One of the most influential Lebanese artists working today, Zaatari is the author of an oeuvre that reflects on image making and its ties to politics, desire, and memory.

Akram Zaatari—Tomorrow Everything Will Be Alright presents six pieces and invites us to experience them against one another. The exhibition crowns a 20-year collaboration between the artist and Associação Cultural Videobrasil.

For the exhibition, curator Solange Farkas and co-curator Gabriel Bogossian picked artworks that explore the delicate breach between public and private space, on the one hand, and between past and future, on the other, re-writing homo-social attitudes of male individuals in an Arab context. Tomorrow Everything Will Be Alright reflects Zaatari’s predilection for vernacular expressions and their little histories, which often provides insight onto the present. Operating within a documentary tradition, almost as an archaeologist curiously probing the past, he excavates documents, objects, stories, and rumors that index the past and contribute to the writing of a history yet to come.

Three of the pieces will be having their Brazilian premiere. Dance to the End of Love (2011) is entirely made with videos shot by individuals in Egypt, the United Arab Emirates, Saudi Arabia, Palestine, Yemen, and Libya, and uploaded to YouTube. It features teenagers showing themselves off while performing bodybuilding exercises, driving cars or riding motorcycles, singing and dancing. Another Resolution (2008/2013) shows adults mimicking the poses of children in old family pictures. The work examines the passage from childhood to adulthood and the construction of gender conveyed through photography. Beirut Exploded Views (2014) follows two young men trying to inhabit an inhabitable, fragmented, post-apocalyptic city.

The three other featured pieces are part of the Videobrasil Collection, and have been shown before in São Paulo in different editions of the Contemporary Art Festival Sesc_Videobrasil and in special showings. Tomorrow Everything Will Be Alright (2010), Grand Prize winner at the 17th Festival, is an intense love story that unfolds on an analog typewriter and lends its hopeful title to the entire exhibition at Galpão VB. Red Chewing Gum (2000) imagines the urban geography of Hamra through a love memory. It is a reflection on the end of a relationship between two men after love is consumed. The End of Time (2012) is a choreography about love and separation featuring three male characters who perform the beginning and the end of desire, and the ephemerality of passion.

The artist’s participation in various editions of the Festival is explored in depth in The Akram Zaatari Archive, an exhibition-within-an-exhibition that showcases Zaatari’s significant presence in the Videobrasil Collection. The exhibit will feature public programs activities including meetings, course, and workshops with Brazilian artists, curators, and researchers. Critical essays on Akram Zaatari’s work will be compiled into the first reference book on the artist ever published in Brazil.

On September 5 (Monday) at 8pm, the first activity of the public programs will be held, with a conversation conducted by researcher and curator Moacir dos Anjos with Akram Zaatari about the poetics of the artist and the works presented at Galpão VB.

Full program here.


Opening: September 3, 4–8pm

Artist talk: September 5, 8–10pm



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