see beauty in examining the details of the mundane
Tarek Elkassouf is an artist based between Beirut and Sydney. Elkassouf's studio specialises in expressing contemporary art, crafted using precise, traditional craftsmanship handed down over hundreds of years in the Middle East. His language explores the dialogue between the man and the machine.
"My work is about the raw energy extracted from the heart of the Earth, crafted by the work of hands, cut and fashioned with passion, roughness removed, inequality polished away. It is an ode to beauty, an ode to the material".
In 2018 Elkassouf was the selected resident artist at the Swatch Art Gallery in Shanghai. And he has collaborated with international brands like Cartier.
"I see beauty in examining the details of the mundane. The qualities you would otherwise miss. The mundane is surprising. I want people to stop and observe and absorb, and celebrate it. Then continue on their day, with their life having been enriched, and with a changed perception of the world".
Elkassouf's work has been commissioned by international museums such as the Institute of the Arab World in France, and Ithra in Saudi Arabia. And it has been added to the museums of France.
Elkassouf's work has been featured at more than 20 international exhibitions, and is represented in galleries and museums in the Middle East, Asia, America and Europe. His work is present in Beirut, Kuwait, Dubai, Paris, Shanghai, New York, Singapore, Riyadh, Madrid, Fribourg, Toronto, Hong Kong, London, Bangkok, Munich.
"It transcends language, age, race, religion, politics, gender, and socioeconomic background. Regardless of the player's circumstances, anyone can enjoy a good fight over the chess board. This is blasphemy. The impious intersection of materials. The melding of marble and onyx, merged together in an ode to the curve. The man, the machine and the material. A slow and delicate process respecting the sensitivity and delicacy of the onyx.
The raw energy extracted from the heart of the Earth, crafted by the work of hands, cut and fashioned with passion, roughness removed, inequality polished away. The final touches, the details; an ode to beauty, an ode to the material. An immoderate ashtray symbolising a silent acquiescence to stop and recede from the hustle, the shove of life. A restorative hiatus; rolling a puff, enjoying the process and taking time for one's self".