One week back in Beirut and I’m struggling to get back into a routine now that I’m not in the office everyday. I’ve spent a lot of my time baby-sitting little Sam, celebrating his first ever easter by decorating the little tree on the balcony with easter decorations (Sam was far more interested in the packaging that the decorations) and dying eggs to make a colourful easter basket. Sam loved the dye, as he is going through a phase where he is obsessed with water, and very much enjoyed splashing the colours all over me, himself, the table, the floor, his high-chair and everything else in a three-metre radius.
This week for the first time I’ve got four articles in the paper, which is great, but has left me no time to write my blog, something I’d been trying very hard to do regularly.
The work for the paper has been amazing, I really love writing every day on topics I’ve chosen, after the years at university writing about topics chosen for me.
In the past few weeks I’ve covered five art exhibitions, with another one scheduled for tomorrow, as well as three concerts, a graphic novel and a web-documentary. I’ve met some very interesting people and so far have enjoyed every stage of the process, from the preparation to the interviews to the writing.
Just after Christmas Everitte and I took a day trip with my family to Beiteddine, an Ottoman palace which is now the summer residence of the President of the Republic of Lebanon (to give him his full and proper title!)
It is a beautiful old building, with the traditional Ottoman mosaics, Islamic decoration and carved wooden ceilings, doors and screens, as well as a beautiful courtyard with fountains and water-features.
The palace took 30 years to complete and was built between 1788 and 1818.
Beirut is a city of contradictions. It’s 1000 other places and things and at the same time it’s utterly unique.
It’s Roman ruins…
…and it’s Dunkin Donuts. Continue reading
A couple of people expressed interest in seeing more of Beirut’s graffiti. In my previous post on Beirut’s Street Art I posted pictures of the art around Hamra and Gemmayzeh, two central, residential districts of Beirut. In the process of researching my article on graffiti in Beirut for Hibr online I subsequently made a trip to Karantina, one of Beirut’s industrial areas out by the port, in order to photograph the graffiti art there, which is a lot bigger and more impressive, as artists go there to bomb the ugly concrete walls along the main road in and out of Beirut so that people see their work on their boring commutes to and from work from Northern Lebanon.
I am in the process of researching an article about Beirut’s graffiti, and been photographing street art all around the city for the past few weeks. Of the first things that struck me about Beirut when I arrived was the volume and quality of the street art, which is not only in the industrial areas of the city such as Quarantina, but also in the richer and more upmarket areas, such as Hamra and Achrefieh. As a picture is worth 1000 words I’ll let these images speak for themselves.