Dalloul Art Foundation

Dalloul Art Foundation

CHAOUKI CHOUKINI CHAOUKI CHOUKINI

CHAOUKI CHOUKINI, Lebanon (1946)

+-

Bio

Written by Zeid El Amine

Chaouki Choukini was born in 1946 in Choukine, a village in southern Lebanon. He studied at the École Nationale Supérieure des Beaux-Artsin Paris from 1967 to 1972, later teaching sculpture at the Lebanese University in Tripoli (1985-1987) and the Jordanian University of Yarmouk (1989-1991) before settling in Paris. In 2010 he was awarded the Taylor Foundation Prize for his sculpture Petit Prince, L’Enfant de Gaza (2009)As a sculptor, he works primarily with wood, which he describes as a living material with a connection to the earth that he strives to preserve in his sculptures. The artist’s conceptual and straightforward works are executed in a figurative style that is partially abstract yet identifiable in form. He carves polished wood in elegant curves and Cubistic edges that are spatially balanced to create rhythm and harmony. 

Choukini’s path to sculpture started early and was deeply entwined with his personal life. As a child, Choukini experimented with wood by making toys at a carpenter’s workshop. In Paris, he trained for five years with his wife’s uncle Fumio Otani, an expert in wood sculpting, and, in 1984, spent a year in Japan with his wife. This year had a marked impact on his work, as the artist drew inspiration from Japanese minimalism.

Choukini’s early works in the 1970s and 1980s were mostly horizontal, depicting bird’s eye memories of landscapes from his village. Humans are absent in these sculptures, but their traces are palpable, symbolizing the relationship between man and nature, for example, in Nu Paysage (1972). Choukini carves Iroko wood to appear simultaneously as a flat landscape and a reclining nude figure, eliding the distinction between soil and flesh as interconnected products of the natural world. Later in his career, he began creating vertical works with a more contemporary feel. Inspired by Japanese minimalism, he removes parts of his sculptures by puncturing them, thus incorporating light and air into his work. In Cheval De Guernica (2012), he depicts a horse as a tribute to Picasso’s Guernica and a reminder of the tragedies of war. The bronze figure is varied in texture, incorporating both smooth and rough surfaces and riddled with window-like openings, which allow a play of light and shadow to form around the sculpture.  

Choukini’s artistic process often begins with a watercolor sketch, and these plans for sculptures can be considered artworks in their own right. Though they are destined to be carved or cast in wood or bronze, the shapes that populate his sketches are not hard and brittle, but instead feature soft hues and minimize dark edges; perhaps these watercolor plans partially explain the artist’s skill in lending an organic softness to the severe geometric shapes of his work. He also produces landscapes in watercolor that deploy a light touch and a dreamy color palette, evoking the hazy mist of memory itself. Désert 5 (1992), for example, is an aquarelle portraying an empty desert with a greyish-yellow background. Choukini’s vision for deserts came from childhood readings of pre-Islamic poetry, as well as his stay in Jordan. After drafting his work, he begins carving and always nearly-completes a sculpture before making another, a process that can take years.

Chaouki Choukini lives and works between Paris and Normandy.

Sources

Abillama, Nour.S & Tomb, Marie. Art From Lebanon: Modern and Contemporary Artists 1880-1975. Lebanon: Wonderful Editions, 2012.

Artistes Contemporains. Accessed April 17, 2019. https://www.artistescontemporains.org/artistes/chaouki-choukini/

“Chaouki Choukini.” Barjeel Art Foundation. Accessed April 15, 2019.https://www.barjeelartfoundation.org/artist/lebanon/chaouki-choukini/

أيوب، ديانا. " 'الشعر في الخشب'.. منحوتات تضج بالحياة." الإمارات اليوم. ٢٧ أيلول ٢٠١٦. https://www.emaratalyoum.com/life/culture/2016-09-27-1.932175?ot=ot.PrintPageLayout

Seaman, Anna. "Highlights of Alserkal Avenue's New Art Season." The National. September 19, 2016. Accessed April 17, 2019. https://www.thenational.ae/arts-culture/highlights-of-alserkal-avenue-s-new-art-season-1.211096?videoId=5766484581001

Kalsi, Jyoti. "Memories in Wood." Gulf News – No.1 in UAE and Dubai for Breaking News, Opinion and Lifestyle. Accessed April 15, 2019. https://gulfnews.com/entertainment/arts-culture/memories-in-wood-1.1915160

Proctor, Rebecca. A. “The Poetry of Wood.”Harper’s BAZAAR Arabia. Autumn, 2016. http://images.gagallery.com/www_gagallery_com/2016_09_Harpers_Bazaar.pdf

“Chaouki Choukini.” Art Dubai. Video File. February 21, 2018. http://www.artdubai.ae/portraits-chaouki-choukini/

Exhibit-E.com. "Exhibitions - Poetry in Wood - Press Release - Green . Art . Gallery." Exhibitions - Poetry in Wood - Press Release - Green . Art . Gallery. Accessed April 15, 2019. http://www.gagallery.com/exhibitions/poetry-in-wood_1/press-release

+-

CV

Selected Solo Exhibitions

2020

Choukini, 10 recent sculptures, Espace Claude Lemand, Paris, France

2019

Chaouki Choukini, Green Art Gallery, Dubai, UAE

2018

Choukini, Bronzes, Espace Claude Lemand, Paris, France

2017

Choukini, Sculptures, Espace Claude Lemand, Paris, France

2016

Choukini, Sculptures, Espace Claude Lemand, Paris, France
Poetry in Wood,Green Art Gallery, Dubai, UAE

2015

La Condition Humaine. Sculptures. 1978-2014, Espace Claude Lemand, Paris, France

2012

Le Bois et le Bronze. Sculptures Récentes, Espace Claude Lemand, Paris, France

1991

Institut du Monde Arabe, Paris, France

Selected Group Exhibitions

2018

Masterpieces, Espace Claude Lemand, Paris, France
Le Monde Arabe Vu Par Ses Artistes, Institut du Monde Arabe, Paris, France
A Century in Flux, Sharjah Art Museum, UAE

2017

Beloved Bodies Part 2, Barjeel Art Foundation, Sharjah, UAE
Mathaf Collection, Summary, Part 2, Mathaf: Arab Museum of Modern Art, Doha, Qatar

2016

Resistance and Persistence, Sanayeh Garden, Beirut, Lebanon

2015

Rituals of Signs and Transitions, Darat Al Funun, Jordan

2014

Portrait of The-Non-Existent-Bird, Musée de l’Hospice Saint-Roch, Issoudon, France
Modernités Arabes, Espace Claude Lemand, Paris, France

2013

Petits Formats en Fête, Espace Claude Lemand, Paris, France
Tajreed, Contemporary Art Platform, Kuwait
L’Art Au Liban, Galerie Claude Lemand, Paris, France

2012

Le Corps Découvert, Institut du Monde Arabe, Paris, France
Abdelké/Adonis/Choukini/El-Hajj, 4 Artistes de la Galerie Claude Lemand, Galerie Jacques Leegenhoek, Paris, France
La Création Libanaise, 1959-2012. Œuvres de 14 artistes de 3 générations, Espace Claude Lemand, Paris, France
Les Art de l’Exil, Espace Claude Lemand, Paris, France
La Verrière, Paris, France

2010

Acquisitions Récente, Espace Claude Lemand, Paris, France

1997

International Aswan Sculpture Symposium, Cairo Biennial, Egypt 

1994

Biennale d’Issy des Moulineaux, France 

1991

Trois Sculpteurs, Institut du Monde Arabe, Paris, France

1974

Colamarini et Son Atelier, Musée Rodin, Paris, France

Awards & Honors

2015

Prize of the Pierre Gianadda Foundation, Academie des Beaux-Arts de L'Institut de France

2010

Prize of the Taylor Foundation, Paris

1978

Young Sculpture Prize, Paris

Collections

Ramzi & Saeda Dalloul Art Foundation, Beirut, Lebanon
Centre National des Arts Plastique (CNAP), Paris, France
Musée d’Art Contemporain de Val-de-Marne, Ivry-sur-Siene, France
Arab World Institute, Paris, France
Mathaf, Arab Museum of Modern Art, Doha, Qatar
National Gallery of Fine Arts, Amman, Jordan
The Khalid Shoman Collection, Jordan, Amman
La ville de La Verrière, Yvelines, France
La ville d’Evry Courcouronnes, Essonne, France
Barjeel Art Foundation, Sharjah, UAE
Sharjah Art Foundation, Sharjah, UAE

+-

Documents

Choukini- Artiste Sculpteure
Tom Laurent
Art Absolument/ Artist Website, French
Choukini- Artiste Sculpteure
Adonis
Artist Website, French
Choukini- Artiste Sculpteure
Louis Leygue
Artist Website, French, 1979
Art From Lebanon. Modern and Contemporary Artists 1880-1975
Nour Salame Abillama & Marie Tomb
Wonderful Editions/ DAF Library, English, 2012

Extract from book p. 404, 405

النحت في لبنان
Cezar Nammour
Fine Arts Publishing & Printing/ DAF Library, Arabic, 1990

Extract from pp. 42,56,57

Art In Motion. Resistance & Persistence
Banque Du Liban, English, 2016

Catalog

Chaouki Choukini
Nadine Fattouh
English
"Portrait de l’Oiseau-Qui-N’Existe-Pas Collection Claude et France Lemand Peintures, dessins, sculptures, livres d’artiste et estampe Sur un poème de Claude Aveline 23 mai au 31 août 2014 Exposition"
Musee de l'Hospice Saint-Roch, French, 2014

Catalog

النحاتون اللبنانيون بقلم حسين أحمد سليم
حسين أحمد سليم
دنيا الوطن, Arabic, 2015
+-

Press

"Chaouki Choukini, un sculpteur qui fait pénétrer la lumière dans la matière"
L' Orient Le Jour, French, 2010
شوقي شوكيني منحوتاتي مفتوحة على الطبيعة الجنوبية
فيصل سلطان
السفير, Arabic, 1983

Extract from book كتابات مستعادة من ذاكرة فنون بيروت

Découvrez l'incroyable expo d'art contemporain
Le Parisien, French, 2012
حضور عربي بمعرض "ار باري" في باريس
naharnet.com, Arabic, 2013
الشرق و الشباب نجوم "أرت باريس"
أوراس زيباوي
almodon.com, Arabic, 2013
EXPOSITION ITINERANTEPortrait- de-l’Oiseau-Qui- N’Existe-Pas
museeissoudon.tv, French, 2014
Chaouki Choukini. La Condition Humaine. Sculptures, 1972-2014
artabsolument.com, French, 2015
Art in Motion! صمود و إصرار: الفن ينزل إلى الصنائع
al-akhbar.com, Arabic, 2016
Beirut Exhibition: "Resistance and Persistence"
Noor Tannir
Orient Palms, English, 2016
Announcement detail view
Sylvia Beder
e-artnow.org, English, 2016
"Resistance & Persistance"
Agenda Culturel, English, 2016
People and art mingle at Sanayeh garden Art in Motion brings 24 renowned artist to the public
Olga Habre
Executive Magazine, English, 2016
Resistance and Persistence : Art In Motion
Inferno Magazine, English, 2016
صمود و إصرار ... فاتحة معارض في حديقة الصنائع Art In Motion
al-binaa.com, Arabic, 2016
Le Monde arabe vu par ses artistes
Institut Du Monde Arabe, French, 2018
Le Monde arabe vu par ses artistes
arts-in-the-city.com, French, 2018
Green Art Gallery
dallasartfair.com, English, 2019
Breaking The Mold
Nancy Cohen
PatronMagazine.com, English, 2019
+-

Videos

+-

Exhibitions

CHAOUKI CHOUKINI Artwork