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Graphic Lit

from the February 2012 issue

Letter to the Mother

Click image below to enlarge

Mazen Kerbaj

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.


Translated from French by Mazen Kerbaj and by Ahmad Gharbieh

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.

Ahmad Gharbieh is Associate Creative Director at the design and communication agency Mind the Gap and teaches in the Department of Architecture and Graphic Design at the American University of Beirut, specializing in mapping design and theory. His work explores mapping as a method of research, analysis, and representation of sociospatial phenomena. He is a founding member of Kharita, a collaborative initiative focusing on the production and dissemination of advocacy maps on conflicts in the Middle East. His work has been exhibited in Barcelona, Berlin, Paris, Rotterdam, and Sharjah. He is coeditor of Beirut: Mapping Security, a publication and project initiated for the Fourth International Architecture Biennale in Rotterdam and recently translated and published in Arabic. He is on the design committee of Samandal, a multilingual comics platform based in Beirut.

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