press release

Walid Raad is one of the most important contemporary artists from the Middle East. He has created a highly influential and internationally recognized body of work that includes photography, video, text, installation, and performance. In his challenging works, Raad has developed innovative methods for imaging war and for exploring political and social conflicts in art. He has also generated original ideas about the relationship between photography, documentary practice, violence and history.

The exhibition at Hasselblad Center presents a broad overview of Raad's work from the early 1980s until today, among others his remarkable project The Atlas Group (1989–2004), about the Lebanese wars (1975–1990), through which he received widespread attention. In this project Raad often attributed his documents to imaginary characters as he investigated how events of extreme violence were lived, experienced and represented. Also included in the exhibition is Raad's ongoing series Sweet Talk (1987–present), an investigation of Beirut, its residents and spaces. This series consists of photo assignments Raad gave himself to capture the changing face of his home city.

The exhibition Walid Raad – 2011 Hasselblad Winner will be shown at Hasselblad Center, Gothenburg, Sweden, until January 15, 2012.

In conjunction with the exhibition a book, Walid Raad – I Might Die Before I Get a Rifle, Hasselblad Award 2011, has been produced in collaboration with Steidl Verlag, Göttingen.

Walid Raad, was born in Chbanieh, Lebanon in 1967. He lives and works in Beirut and New York, and is Associate Professor of Art in The Cooper Union, School of Art, New York, since 2002.

Walid Ra´ad
2011 Hasselblad Award Winner