Delta Arts member Emma Smith has recently returned from a three-week fellowship in Beirut (27 September – 16 October 2010), completing the Golden Threads fellowships for 2010. Golden Threads is Delta Arts’ international fellowship program that ran this year between Lebanon, Denmark and the UK, supported by the Arts Council England and the Danish Arts Council.
During her fellowship in Beirut Emma was supported by 98weeks. Hosted by artist Marwa Arsanios and Mirene Arsanios who co-direct 98weeks Emma’s visit included a number of artist and organisational meetings, an artist talk, performance event, and three-day workshop.
Emma met with a number of Lebanese artists / practitioners including Hatem Imam (Golden Threads fellow to the UK 2010), Kiki Bokassa, Ghassan Maasri, Vartan Avakian, Elias Maalouf, Ghassan Salhab, Alfred Tarazi, Dalia Khamissy, Souad Abdallah, Eyad Houssami, Masour Aziz and Maxime Hourani.
Organisational visits included the Arab Image Foundation, Sfeir Semler gallery, Zico House, Sanayeh House and Studio, Ashkal Alwan, Zoukak and the Beirut Art Centre.
During her stay Emma ran a three-day workshop at 98weeks called ‘Art Services: Cultural Production and Public Use’. This peer-to-peer workshop explored self-organisation, how practice is valued, where it is located, the role of the artist in society and how practitioners can contribute to change.
She also gave an artist talk and hosted a reading group at 98weeks, and hosted a performative event at Sanayeh House in collaboration with artist Lawrence Abu Hamden.