Data + Design Project

A Map of Beirut in Rubber

Tuesday 02.05.2013 , Posted by
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Marwan Rechmaoui Rubber Map Beirut Caoutchouc 6

Beirut is a vibrant place with a storied past… one which has left the city covered in scars that are still being repaired. Lebanese artist Marwan Rechmaoui often works with themes of urban development and social history revolving around his home country – in this case a large, floor based map of the current city layout. Titled Beirut Caoutchouc, the coastal Mediterranean city is recreated with heavy pieces of rubber embossed with roads, byways and segmented into 60 individual pieces that demarcate neighborhoods.

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Through highlighting the different neighborhoods, Rechmaoui brings awareness to the cities conflicted and sometimes divided society, looking at how it has shaped the form of the place and sparking questions about the consequences of cultural differences.

The second piece we feature here is actually a replica of Rechmaoui’s former apartment building – quickly evacuated in 2006 during the military conflict with Israel. The slightly unnerving model, called Spectre (The Yacoubian Building, Beirut), is presented to us devoid of inhabitants, standing like a deteriorating symbol of optimistic times now past. It was created using concrete and glass, held together by grout and thin wooden strips, and detailed with pieces of aluminum and miniature advertisements. Find out more about Marwan Rechmaoui’s work at the Saatchi Gallery.

Marwan Rechmaoui Rubber Map Beirut Caoutchouc 2

Marwan Rechmaoui Rubber Map Beirut Caoutchouc 1

Marwan Rechmaoui Rubber Map Beirut Caoutchouc 3

Marwan Rechmaoui Rubber Map Beirut Caoutchouc 4

Marwan Rechmaoui Rubber Map Beirut Caoutchouc 5

Marwan Rechmaoui Spectre The Yacoubian Building Beirut 7

Marwan Rechmaoui Spectre The Yacoubian Building Beirut 8

Marwan Rechmaoui Spectre The Yacoubian Building Beirut 9

Marwan Rechmaoui Spectre The Yacoubian Building Beirut 10

Marwan Rechmaoui Spectre The Yacoubian Building Beirut 11

Marwan Rechmaoui Spectre The Yacoubian Building Beirut 12

Via: sweet-station

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Benjamin Starr

Written by Benjamin Starr



Known in some circles as the most amazing man in the universe, he once saved an entire family of muskrats from a sinking, fire engulfed steamboat while recovering from two broken arms relating to a botched no-chute wingsuit landing in North Korea. When not impressing people with his humbling humility, he can be found freelance writing, finding shiny objects on the internet, enjoying the company of much-appreciated friends and living out his nomadic nature. He is Managing Editor of Visual News. Follow his movements on Twitter:

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