- Artist Ahmad Ghossein
- Title The Fourth Stage
- Date 2015
- Medium Video
- Dimensions 37 minutes
- Credit Commissioned by Sharjah Art Foundation
Ahmad Ghossein’s work The Fourth Stage (2015) weaves a complex and unlikely union of illusion and myth between three worlds of which he is concurrently a part: cinema, magic and the changing landscape of southern Lebanon.
Within his dystopian narrative, Ghossein inquires into the motivations and implications of the disappearance of a famous magician and ventriloquist whom Ghossein assisted as a child. The duo toured villages in south Lebanon, performing captivating magic tricks to bewildered children. Over the years, Chico the magician began gradually to retreat from the public sphere. The Fourth Stage also captures the apparition of monumental geometric sculptures in south Lebanon. The majority of them are unmarked; they do not commemorate sky, as if to herald a time to come. Situated at the outskirts or entrances of towns, close to valleys and mountains and in public squares, the sculptures perforate the rural and urban fabric and lead the artist to wonder, ‘Have illusion and magic, elements that are essential in shaping a country’s collective imaginary, been replaced by other ideological and religious systems of fabulation forged by political parties and the nation-state?’
Sharjah Biennial 12: The past, the present, the possible (SB12) will open on March 5, 2015 and will be on view through June 5, 2015.