Discreet and quiet as it might seem, almost casual and accidental, Lara Tabet's photography, with its quotidian focus, is far from innocuous and actually quite related to her background in clinical pathology and the metaphors it serves as a bridge to, in the context of Lebanon: "I am interested in the idea of trauma as it relates to both the Body and the City. Using my family history of genetic disease and the political instability of my homeland Beirut, I explore the interplay between the individual and the collective." Tabet's work with amnesia moves in manifold directions: The loss of loved ones and the disappearance of an entire city changing faster than the camera is able to capture it, triggers a sense of amnesia which demands an almost obsessive and invasive type of photographing, documenting, re-photographing, imagining, staging and photographing again. The process begins and ends with amnesia, of which the artist says, "This conscious act of sabotage, of addition and subtraction, I consider as an exorcism of some kind, as if my only consolation resides in artifice and illusion."
Lara Tabet was born in Lebanon in 1983 and before taking up photography, she studied clincal pathology at the American University of Beirut. In 2009, she participated in a workshop led by Klavdij Sluban during the Rencontres Internationales de la photographie in Arles and in 2012 under Laurence Leblanc at workshop in Ashkal Alwan In 2013, she completed a one-year, full time program of general sudies at the International Center of Photography in New York, and was the recipient of the Lisette Model scholarship. More recently, between 2013 and 2014, she took part in the HomeWorks Space Program at Ashkal Alwan under Jalal Toufic and Anton Vidokle. As an artist she has taken part in different group shows in New York and Beirut (Artist in Exile, Dr. M.T.Geoffrey Yeh Art Gallery NYC; Art/World/Disaster, AUB Art Gallery, Beirut; Exposure 2013, Beirut Art Center, Beirut; I'll be your mirror: Navigating Interaction in the Digital Age, International Center of Photography; On Fleeting Grounds, Galerie Janine Rubeiz, Beirut; The View From Here, International Center of Photography NYC; Mixed Bag, Studio 49B). In 2013, she received the Daylight Photo Award Juror’s Pick for her project “The Reeds”, in collaboration with Michelle Daher. She is currently working on a new collective project in Beirut, while continuing to explore the themes of memory, trauma, the city, and the body. She took part in a group exhibition at the gallery in early 2013 and her work is permanently exhibited at Galerie Janine Rubeiz.