Marya Kazoun 

About her work
One of the most distinguished performance artists in Lebanon, and a regional pioneer, Kazoun's work engages with the feminine in the context of Islamic culture, but adopting an inner perspective of perceptive performance which has allowed her to develop an internal code of experience and lived time, carried across body and material, and not always ephemeral. Culture, metaphor, body and space merge continuously, often into single objects, or obliterate together into a new form of life, representation and world, often far larger and more powerful than the original subject matter. The presence of the performance is not only mimetic, but creates a lasting tension between internal turmoil and the need for representation and expression. The omnipresent feminine leaves behind always traces: procreation, materiality, continuity, empathy.

Marya Kazoun was born in Lebanon in 1976 and grew up in Beirut. She lives and works between New York and Venice. In 1984 she moved to Switzerland and later to Montreal. She received undergraduate degrees in interior architecture and fine arts at the Lebanese American University. In 2001 Kazoun moved to NY and completed an master's degree in fine arts at the School of Visual Arts. She participated in the 51st Venice Biennial in 2005 with the solo show ‘Personal Living Space’. Her international interventions include the Pushkin State Museum of Fine Arts (2006), the Museum of Modern Art of Klagenfurt (2006), the Sharjah Biennial8 (2007), the World Economic Forum in Davos (2008), Pozna Biennial in Poland (2008), and the 53rd Venice Biennale (2009) with major works in different shows. Three large works of of the artist were on view at the 54th Venice Biennial in 2011. Her works has been showcased by Galerie Janine Rubeiz in Art Dubai (2011) and Abu Dhabi Art (2012). An interdisciplinary artist, her practice consists mainly of installations and performances, and often a combination of both. 3D reliefs, paintings, drawings and photos are academic studies that support her installations and performances.