On Saturday, March 2, at 3pm, e-flux will host a special presentation by Joana Hadjithomas and Khalil Joreige entitled “On the Lebanese Rocket Society.”
Hadjithomas and Joreige have spent several years researching the Lebanese Rocket Society project: a space adventure carried out at Haigazian, an Armenian university in Lebanon, by a group of scientists and students led by Manoug Manougian who designed, produced and launched the first rockets in the Middle East between 1960 to 1967. At the time of the cold war and pan arabism, the project made the headlines of all the major newspapers and became so well known that a stamp was issued commemorating it. Yet it has now sunken into oblivion, pushed from our history and disconnected from our self-image.
The presentation of Hadjithomas and Joreige’s research at e-flux brings this buried story back to life to reconsider the rewriting of certain historical events and the production of the imaginary, and, far from the temptations of nostalgia, to revive it through what is known as ‘Reconstitution, Reenactment and Restaging’ or other activations of the past in the present.
Joana Hadjithomas and Khalil Joreige collaborate as filmmakers and artists. Their have directed the documentaries Khiam 2000–2007 and El The lost film and the feature films Al Bayt el Zaher and A Perfect Day and most recently, Je veux voir (I want to see), starring Catherine Deneuve and Rabih Mroué. Recent solo shows include: We could be heroes just for one day (Musée d’art Moderne de la ville de Paris, 2009), Wonder Beirut (Centre de la Photographie, Geneve, 2009), I’m there even if you don’t see me (Ellen Bina Gallery, Montreal, 2009), How soon is now (Beirut Exhibition Center 2012). They have participated in numerous group shows and biennials including the Sharjah Biennial (2011), Biennale de Lyon (2011), Istanbul Biennial (2011), la Triennale (Paris 2012), Gwangju Biennale (2012), and the Kochi Biennale (2012). They are the authors of numerous publications and university lecturers in Lebanon and Europe. They are members of the board of Metropolis Cinema and co-founders of Abbout Productions together with Georges Schoucair. Hadjithomas is also a member of the curricular committee of the Ashkal Alwan academy, Home workspace. www.hadjithomasjoreige.com
The presentation takes place in conjunction with their exhibition, The Lebanese Rocket Society – A Tribute to Dreamers (Parts II, III, IV and V) at CRG Gallery, New York, February 28–April 20, 2013.