Let Lebanon Live

… Before I Die

Back in late October and early November 2019, one of the walls surrounding the Beiruti ESCWA (a United Nations building, Economic and Social Commission for Western Asia) building was transformed with graffiti and street art into a “Revolution Wall”.  It coincided with protests against bad governance, corruption and social injustice in Lebanon.  The  Art of Change movement was involved in painting the wall…  along with many Lebanese artist.  This is only one of such walls.

below: Caricatures of Lebanese officials along with two posters.  The one on the far left is by sumerziady 

light brown temporary wall outside, made of panels, now home to a revolution wall of art and graffiti, white faces, a poster by sumerziady and the words let Lebanon live before I die

below: A mouse wearing a hard hat and brandishing a sword.

a grey mouse in a hard hat holding a sword, graffiti on a wall

below: A wonderful black and rust coloured bird, by RenoZ,  It doesn’t seem fazed by the mouse with the sword.

realistic painting of a red and black bird on a branch, on a wall in Beirut

below: A monkey-faced man by Zein, a clenched fist rising out of the ground, and two green fighters in a no entry zone (or is it the Lebanese flag?).

graffiti, a man with a monkey face, a red and white do not enter sign with two green figures fighting,

below: Freedom, loud and clear.

looking along a wall full of protest street art including a large word freedom

below: Another Renoz painting, a skull on a chair from which a red rose is rising.

a skull sits on a red upholstered chair with wood arms and legs, on a blue background, also hand with lebanese flag, and the word resist

below: The man in the megaphone is signed Dewdle, the mark of Ali Kadado, a Lebanese artist.  Resist.

a black hand with a Lebanese flag over the palm beside a man's face, shouting with eyes closed, coming out of a megaphone, street art protest piece

below:  I am now feeling that my lack of Arabic means that I am missing a lot of what these mean.  For instance, the purple guy by Weesdom is saying something but I don’t know what.  I also suspect that the words written on the tap over the young man’s mouth are important, perhaps “Revolution even if you try to silence us”? (artwork by Roula Abdo).  The last one is in English but now some knowledge of Lebanese politics would be helpful –   a phone screenshot by phat2tg (ot the tg posse)

street art on the escwa wall in Beirut

wall of revolution, text in red paint on a wall in Beirut, along with other graffiti

below: Stencil by markghsoub aka Markus – a larger than life man standing in a shallow boat.

stencil of a man in arab dress walking and other graffiti

below: Title section, “Revolution Wall” featuring a clown with dollar signs flashing in his eyes by Ivan Debs.

revolution wall, title of all the street art collection, on escwa wall, protest art, Beirut, clown face, green tree, closed fist,

below: Caricature mugshots.  Lebanese government officials as Jokers as they go off to jail.

graffiti on a Beirut wall, caricature mug shos of 4 Lebanese men, green hair and clown mouths, wearing black and white striped tops

below: Another markghsoub stencil

black stencil of two people looking into the distance, on top of a green circle along with a red and white dove

can you smell the madness is written in red across some other graffiti

below: Dancing while the bombs fall by Zein.

white ballet dancer with skirt twirling as she spins, black bombs dropping around her. graffiti on a wall

below: Giving the peace sign, a man in a red and white shirt by fasewho aka Oliver Matar (He also painted the large word ‘Freedom’ a few pictures back). The head with all the people as hair is another painting by Roula Abdo.

a head with stick figure people with arms upward as hair, and a strip of cloth in form of Lebanese flag across bridge of nose and cheeks, by Roula Abdo alongside a man in a red and white shirt on a green background, both graffiti on a wall

below: A bunch of balloons, most in the colours of the Lebanese flag by ilatk aka Ilat Knayzeh  on one side, and on the right is a woman stenciled on top of a circular pattern by  ZaFeelz aka Zayna Ayyad

Beirut Revolution Art wall, two pieces, circlar art with woman's face stenciled in black, a painting of balloons and lebanese flag

below: Among the profanity, two calligraphy pieces by Ghaleb Hawila

two calligraphy graffiti pieces on a wall in Beirut

below: An intricate and detailed black and white drawing by @rasharahal

protest graffiti in Beirut, a black and white line drawing by rasharahal

below: A closer look at the top part

close up of the top half of the poster - protest graffiti in Beirut, a black and white line drawing by rasharahal

There is an Instagram page devoted to collecting the 2019 Lebanese Art of Revolution, or Art of Thawra.  Check it out if you are interested seeing more of this type of art.

1 thought on “Let Lebanon Live

  1. Pingback: Revolution Wall 2 | Eyes on the Streets

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