Index XXII-XXVI: Artists, 2011

Walid Raad
Index XXII-XXVI: Artists, 2011
Drywall, paint, wood, colour photographs, vinyl
Dimensions variable
Installation view
Courtesy of Galerie Sfeir-Semler, Beirut/Hamburg
Produced by Sharjah Art Foundation
Photo by Alfredo Rubio


Encompassing installation, performance, video and photography, Walid Raad’s practice investigates how past instances of violence impact people's bodies, minds and cultures. He is well known for The Atlas Group (1989–2004), a project that researched and documented the contemporary history of Lebanon, with particular emphasis on the Lebanese wars of 1975 to 1990. Archived publications from this project include Let's Be Honest, The Weather Helped (2007), My Neck Is Thinner Than A Hair (2006) and the Truth Will Be Known When The Last Witness Is Dead (2004). He is an Associate Professor of Art in The Cooper Union, New York (2002–the present).

Raad’s work has been the subject of several solo exhibitions, including We have never been so populated, Paula Cooper Gallery, New York (2022); Cotton Under My Feet, Museo Nacional Thyssen-Bornemisza, Madrid (2021); Let's be honest, the weather helped, Stedelijk Museum Amsterdam (2019); Better Be Watching the Clouds, Paula Cooper Gallery, New York (2017); Section 39_Index XXXVII: Traboulsi, Asia Art Archive, Hong Kong (2016); Préface, Carré d’Art: Musée d’art contemporain de Nîmes, France (2014); and Scratching on Things I Could Disavow: A History of Art in the Arab World, documenta 13, Kassel (2012).

He has also participated in group exhibitions, including Homosphäre, Kunsthalle Mainz, Germany (2022); 11th Seoul Mediacity Biennale: One Escape at a Time (2021); Understudies: I, Myself Will Exhibit Nothing, KW Institute for Contemporary Art, Berlin (2021); A sun yellow with anger, Galerie Sfeir-Semler, Hamburg (2020); Where the Oceans Meet, Museum of Art and Design, Miami (2019); What We Know That We Don’t Know, Kadist, San Franscico (2017); 11th Gwangju Biennale (2016); and 14th Istanbul Biennale (2015).

Raad’s awards and fellowships include the Aachener Kunstpreis (2018); ICP Infinity Award (2016); Hasselblad Award (2011); a Guggenheim Fellowship (2009); Alpert Award in Visual Arts (2007); Deutsche Börse Photography Prize (2007); Camera Austria Award (2005) and a Rockefeller Fellowship (2003). He is also a member of the Arab Image Foundation

He received a BFA from the Rochester Institute of Technology (1989), and an MA and a PhD in Cultural and Visual Studies at the University of Rochester (1993 and 1996 respectively).

Born in 1967 in Chbanieh, Lebanon, Raad currently lives and works in New York.

SAF participation:
Sharjah Biennial 9 and 10 (2009, 2011)


Raad, Walid

Index XXII-XXVI: Artists

Over the past decade Walid Raad has been fascinated by the emergence of new art museums, galleries, schools and cultural foundations in Arab cities, by way of which the makers, sponsors, consumers, forms and histories of Arab art are becoming more and more visible.