A public art initiative in Beirut has commissioned an art installation in the war-torn town in the hopes of instigating urban transformation as it angles for innovation growth in the country’s tech field.
Barcelona-based artist, Jorge Rodriguez-Gerada, has collaborated with Built by Associative Data (BAD) to create a large-scale mural on a war-torn building in Beirut, Lebanon. The mural has been commissioned by the Beirut Digital District, a cultural organisation that hopes to transform the district of Bachoura into a technology and innovation business district by 2019. The painted work portrays a young boy exploring an arduino board, alluding to the essential need for innovation and education in building a better future for the city.
The mural unfolds on the façade of a dilapidated building in Bachoura, a district that was once the front line of the devastating 1975 civil war in Lebanon. Thanks to the redevelopment masterplan undertaken by the Beirut Digital District, the area is witnessing a fast-paced and hopeful metamorphosis. The intervention highlights the importance of children’s education and future, especially in societies that have been shadowed by war and conflict.
Gerada is internationally known for his large-scale, innovative artwork that can be seen from space. His work focuses on activism, questioning complex social issues, such as identity, human rights or climate change. Gerada joined forces with, BAD, a young international design and architectural practice, which provides a full range of design services using the latest knowledge offered by digital technologies, sustainable practices, and networked processes.