The exhibition now presented at Instituto Tomie Ohtake is the result of a partnership between the Brazilian institution, the Câmara de Comércio Árabe-brasileira (Brazilian-Arabic chamber of commerce), the French General Consulate in São Paulo and the Institute du Monde Arab. There are about 70 works by 15 artists from ten different countries: Ahmad El-Abi (Egypt); Jaber Al Azmeh (Syria); Roger Grasas (Spain); Laila Hida (Morocco); Rania Matar (Lebanon); Zied bem Romdhane (Tunisia); Stephan Zaubitzer (France); Tasneem Alsutan (Saudi Arabia); Helia Ammar (Tunisia); Mohamed Abusal (Palestine); Yazan Khalili (Palestine); Lazare Mohamed Djedddaoui (Syria); Tanya Habjouga (Jordan).
The images in the exhibition and the variety of artists do not reinforce cultural stereotypes, nor are they limited to a single kind of production, but they explore the “taswir” (the act of photographing) from a wide range of subjects and themes, from formal and documental issues to latent themes from our contemporary world, such as feminism. “The artists retreat, in time and space, from current turmoils. They distance themselves, sometimes pretending to ignore them, but the fragments of reality – whether social, historical or cultural – transpire in their images. In a way, all these photographs are witnesses of the contentious days we are living in”, says Gabriel Bauret, curator of the 2nd Biennial.The exhibition Taswir – a fotografia árabe contemporânea (Taswir - Arab contemporary photography) congregates an important section of the Paris Institut du Monde Arabe – IMA’s photographic collection, with a selection of artists who participated in the 2nd Arab World Photography Biennial and in the exhibition “Cristãos do Oriente – 2.000 anos de história (Christians of the East – 2000 years of history, IMA), both presented in the French capital in 2017 and 2018, respectively.