The American University of Beirut has embarked upon a new initiative to play an active role in promoting fine and contemporary art in the region. This website has been created to inform the internet community on the progress of this new endeavor.
The very first step taken in this new direction coincided with the generous donation of Dr. Samir Saleeby to AUB. The Rose and Shaheen Saleeby Collection includes paintings by artists of different generations, ranging from Khalil Saleeby (1870-1928) and Cesar Gemayal (1898-1958) to Omar Onsi (1901-1969) and Saliba Douaihy (1912-1994). The Saleeby donation is the cornerstone upon which AUB will establish a comprehensive collection of modern and contemporary art from the region. Our goal is to integrate this art into the process of learning as much as possible, and to make it available for critical reflection and study.
The new initiative commenced with the launching of new art spaces located in and around AUB campus and the planning of a new museum of art. The exhibition of the works of Khalil Saleeby, which opened in the summer of 2012 at AUB Art Gallery in Sidani Street, was the first of many projects in connection with this initiative. This website will bring to public attention exhibitions, publications, projects and events (both current and upcoming, historical and contemporary), acting as a portal that brings into contact public, artistic and academic communities within the country, across the region and internationally.
The mission of the University Art Collections and Galleries is to inspire and educate, and to enhance the presence, visibility, and impact of the visual arts on campus and at national and regional levels. Through their permanent collections, exhibitions, performances, and educational programs, the galleries serve to deepen the understanding of human creativity, to promote scholarship, outreach, evaluation, and interpretation of the visual arts, and to strengthen appreciation for cultural and historical values with particular focus on the MENA region.
AUB Art Galleries Curator