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Simone Fattal

Simone Fattal

Simone Fattal is an acclaimed Syrian multi-disciplinary artist who breathes life into solid forms and demonstrates the fluidity of that which we consider to be rigid. Drawing on a diverse array of sources across cultures, histories, myths, and legends, Fattal’s works explore time and place as elastic forces, with past and present merging and boundaries breaking.

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Simon Fattal “metaphorS” at Secession, Vienna

Simon Fattal “metaphorS” at Secession, Vienna

Moussemagazine · 16 Jul, 2024 @ 01:32

Simone Fattal studied in France and began painting in Beirut in the early 1970s. She founded the Post-Apollo Press in California and for the next 30 yearsshe dedicated herself to publishing literature and poetry, including many books by her partner Etel Adnan.

Inside the Vatican pavilion’s eye-opening prison exhibition at the Venice Biennale

Inside the Vatican pavilion’s eye-opening prison exhibition at the Venice Biennale

euronews · 01 Jul, 2024 @ 12:20

The exhibition, With my eyes, has sight and perception at its heart and controversially transforms the Vatican pavilion from a women's jail into a gallery.

Simone Fattal / Zhou Siwei / Susana Pilar Delahante Matienzo

Simone Fattal / Zhou Siwei / Susana Pilar Delahante Matienzo

21 Jun, 2024 @ 10:16

Secession presents Simone Fattal, Zhou Siwei and Susana Pilar Delahante Matienzo.

 

About the Artist

Simone Fattal is an acclaimed Syrian multi-disciplinary artist who breathes life into solid forms and demonstrates the fluidity of that which we consider to be rigid. Drawing on a diverse array of sources across cultures, histories, myths, and legends, Fattal’s works explore time and place as elastic forces, with past and present merging and boundaries breaking.

Born in Damascus, Syria in 1942, Fattal was raised in Lebanon. As a young woman, she studied philosophy at Beirut’s École des Lettres and the Sorbonne in Paris, as well as archaeology at the École du Louvre. After years of studying abroad, she returned to Beirut in 1969 and began painting, making a name for herself in the burgeoning Lebanese art scene and exhibiting in numerous shows. However, after the outbreak of the Lebanese Civil War, Fattal fled the country of her youth in 1980 and settled in California. There, she founded the Post-Apollo Press, publishing experimental and avant-garde literary works from around the world.

It was in 1988, while taking a course at the Art Institute of San Francisco, that Fattal’s creative pursuits turned back toward the visual arts, now incorporating new mediums and modes of expression into her work. Her painting practice evolved to include collage and stone, and Fattal found a newfound love for sculpture and ceramics. Fattal particularly connected to the medium of clay, with its malleability making it almost like a living organism. In her adept hands, it could be sculpted and fired into works that seem at once both ancient and alive.

Fattal’s signature sculptures are strikingly contemporary, yet also evoke archetypal figures drawing upon a culturally diverse range of motifs and sources. From Sufi mystic poetry to Greco-Roman mythology and Mesopotamian legends, the emergence in Fattal’s works of a multi-faceted cultural context reflect the trans-culturalism of her own life and places both artist and viewer within a wider vision of humanity in which streams of existence and history unite and transcend borders. It also allows her to explore themes both personal and topical, from the impact of displacement to the politics of excavation and archaeology. Fattal brings history and memory into the present, demonstrating resonances of nature and humanity that reoccur over time, reclaiming her own history and drawing a direct link between herself and the beginnings of civilisation.

Fattal eventually relocated to Paris, where she continues her prolific artistic practice today. Since returning to the city, her chosen mediums have continuously expanded and become ever more multi-disciplinary, encompassing watercolour, installation, etching, and, recently, large-scale bronze sculpture. In 2013, Fattal also produced a film titled Autoportrait, which was shown at numerous film festivals worldwide. A major retrospective of her work titled Works and Days was held at MoMA, New York in 2019.

In many ways, Fattal’s continuously shifting and expanding practice reflects the fluid nature of the world constructed through her art, in which time and geography stretch and melt into one another. Fattal's deeply complex artworks, rooted in the stories of our world, reveal the archetypes and patterns that exist not only in art, but in each of us, forming an unbroken chain across time and space.

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