from the July/August 2021 issue
Mazen Kerbaj is a Lebanese comics author, visual artist, and musician born in Beirut in 1975. He also works on selective illustration and design projects and has taught at the American University of Beirut. Kerbaj is the author of more than fifteen books, and his short stories and drawings have been published in anthologies, newspapers, and magazines. His work has been translated into more than ten languages and has been shown in galleries, museums, and art fairs around the world.
Mazen Kerbaj is widely considered as one of the initiators and key players of the Lebanese free improvisation and experimental music scene. He is co-founder of Irtijal, an annual improvisation music festival (www.irtijal.org), and of Al Maslakh, the first label for experimental music in the region operating since 2005. In 2015, Kerbaj was the recipient of a DAAD one-year artist in residency in Berlin. He has lived and worked in the German capital ever since then.
Since his move to Berlin, Kerbaj has developed several new projects in different fields, such as Borborygmus, a play co-written, directed and performed with Rabih Mroué and Lina Majdalanie; Synesthesia, a concept for a live graphic score for an improvising ensemble; and Walls Will Fall, a composition for forty-nine trumpets. He also started working on Antoine, his most ambitious graphic novel to date.