Chaouki Choukini - Christopher Baaklini (3) View Inside the Book

Chaouki Choukini: Corpus

Chaouki Choukini


Since the late 1960s, Chaouki Choukini has developed an astoundingly consistent aesthetic worldview. His sculptural works, mainly in wood but occasionally in marble or stone, range from horizontal Lieux and Paysages to upright, anthropomorphic, almost totemic figures. At first glance, the works may appear somewhat primitivist. A closer look, however, reveals a sophisticated
interrogation of organic and mechanical worlds, where curvaceous mounds are punctuated by a regiment of pegs, or undulating bases bristle with teeth-like crags. Discursively, Choukini layers an eerie latency into his works: mazes of slits, recesses, and multi-level cavities evoke some vanished human presence on the tense horizon line; the ubiquitous “cord” is a taut yet silent marker of dormant sound. Choukini is tantalizingly dark. His is a world of brooding, empty spaces, where narratives struggle to tell themselves, and everything is in suspense.

About the Artist

Chaouki Choukini

Born in 1946 in Choukine, Lebanon, Chaouki Choukini received his degree from the Ecole Nationale Supérieure des Beaux-arts de Paris in 1972. He was awarded the Prix de la Jeune Sculpture in 1978, followed by the Taylor Foundation Prize in 2010. He was also awarded the Prix de la Fondation Pierre Gianadda, from de l’Academie des Beaux Arts, France in 2015.  Choukini has participated in various solo and group exhibitions including Chaouki Choukini, Green Art Gallery, Dubai, UAE (2019); Le monde arabe vu par ses artistes, Institut du Monde Arabe, Paris, France (2018); Beloved Bodies, Barjeel Art Foundation, Sharjah, UAE (2017), Poetry in Wood, Green Art Gallery, Dubai, UAE, (2016), Portrait de l'Oiseau qui n’existe pas, Musée de l’Hospice Saint-Roch, France (2014); Tajreed (Arab Abstract Art), Contemporary Art Platform, Kuwait (2013); Le Corps decouvert, Institut du Monde Arabe, Paris, France (2012); International Aswan Sculpture Symposium, Cairo Biennial, Egypt (1997); Paris Sculpture, Centre de Sculpture Contemporaine, Paris, France (1973). His works are in several important collections including Musee d’Art Contemporain de Val-de-Marne, France; Institut du Monde Arabe, France; Mathaf, Arab Museum of Modern Art, Doha; Centre National des Arts Plastique, France; Barjeel Art Foundation, Sharjah, UAE and Sharjah Art Foundation. He lives and works in Paris, France.

About the Authors

Kevin Jones

Kevin Jones is an independent arts writer based in Dubai. New York-born and Paris-bred, he has lived in the Middle East for the past 13 years and is currently the UAE Desk Editor for ArtAsiaPacific. He has contributed to The Art Newspaper,, ArtReviewAsia and FlashArt International. Regionally, his writing has been published in Harper’s Bazaar Art Arabia, Bidoun, Canvas, Brownbook and The National. He holds a BA with a double major English Literature/Journalism from Northwestern University. His MA is in Linguistics/Semiotics from La Sorbonne Nouvelle (Paris III). Devoted to fostering a critical voice on contemporary art in the Gulf region, Kevin designed and has taught the 12-week Critical Dialogues programme at Dubai-based non-profit art school Tashkeel since 2016, and is a tutor with Art Jameel as part of its Hayy Learning initiative in Jeddah, KSA. Formerly a brand strategist with international branding and communications agencies, Kevin is also the creator of the niche consultancy Juniper Mind, which mingles critical and creative thinking from the art world with strategic storytelling from brand culture. The mantra: help brands be more like artists, and artists more like brands.

Salah Stétié

Salah Stétié is a Lebanese writer and poet. In his native country, he studied at the French Protestant College of Beirut, Saint Joseph University of Beirut, and the Graduate School of Arts of Beirut, where he studied Letters and Law under the tutelage of Gabriel Bounoure, whom he considered a spiritual teacher. He then studied Orientalism at the Sorbonne in 1951 under a scholarship. His time in Paris proved influential; he published the books "Le Voyage D'Alep" and "Mercure De France", and became friends with a number of French poets including Yves Bonnefoy. In 1955 he returned to Lebanon where taught at the Lebanese Academy of Fine Arts, Graduate School of Arts of Beirut, and the University of Beirut, where he taught until 1961 when his diplomatic career began.

Technical Details

Publication Date:
Friday, December 6, 2019
English and French
24.7 x 17.7 cm
716 g
Number of Pages:
Kaph Books
The Arts