"For his current exhibition “Here and Now” at Galerie Janine Rubeiz, Beirut artist Joseph Harb has produced paintings, drawings and sculptures that constitute some of his rawest, most haunting and memorable figurative art to date. White plaster and red clay figures, based on his own body and those of friends, family, and neighbors, are seated or standing, poised or waiting. They are displayed on stools of different styles and heights. Like actors in a play that never starts, these figures inhabit three-dimensional environments that evoke everyday spaces. One can walk around them (which makes the effect all the more eerie) or touch them, but they live in their own universe. It is impossible to warn them that the moment they are waiting for will never arrive. Unlike, say, the 18th century sculptures of Franz Xaver Messerschmidt with their contorted facial expressions, they are expressionless. A few of them have generic facial features; in others the eyes are missing, or the face is blank."
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