Artwork Details

  • Artist Rayyane Tabet
  • Title Cyprus
  • Date 2015
  • Medium Wooden boat, steel anchor, pulleys, rope and hardware
  • Credit Commissioned by Sharjah Art Foundation
Cyprus Image


Cyprus (2015) is the fourth work in a series ‘Five Distant Memories: The Suitcase, The Room, The Toys, The Boat and Maradona’ (2006-), which the artist describes as an exercise in recovering his earliest memory. After realizing that he in fact has five ‘first’ memories, each connected to a particular object, Rayyane Tabet began to make sculptures that reimagine these objects and the situations that surround them.

Cyprus features a wooden boat that the artist’s father rented twenty-nine years ago in a clandestine attempt to flee Lebanon with his family. The journey lasted a mere thirty minutes, at which point his father realized he could never manoeuvre the massive craft to Cyprus. The work began when Tabet and his family accidentally encountered the same boat, now decommissioned, on the shores of Jbeil in 2012. Such opportune, even mystical coincidences recur in Tabet’s work. The 850-kilogramme boat hangs in precarious balance with its human-size anchor, underscoring its anthropomorphic qualities through both fragility and form.