Abdulrahman Katanani

Born in 1983, Abdulrahman Katanani was raised in the Sabra refugee camps (Beirut, Lebanon). He is a third-generation refugee
since his grandparents fled their hometown, Jaffa in Palestine, settling in Shatila after the Nakba in 1948. His early life is imprinted
with the traumatic aftermath of the 1982 massacre that took place in Sabra and Shatila. Katanani uses his artistic gift as a means of alleviation, favouring positivity over devastation. Early on, he painted graffiti murals in the refugee camp and drew caricatures such as “al-fida’i”, the freedom fighter. He received his diploma in Fine Arts from the Lebanese University in Beirut in 2007 and an MFA on Palestinian contemporary art in 2012. The artist collects discarded fragments from the camp, such as barbed wire, pieces of metal shutters and car parts. While preserving the materials’ rawness, Katanani creates sculptures and installations which transcend the medium’s physical property. His exploration of movement through the manipulation of rigid objects that hold culturally oppressive meaning reveals his ability to rise above the trenches. In 2009, he was awarded the Young Artist Prize at the Autumn Salon organised by the Sursock Museum in Beirut. His work was included in many institutions around the world, such as the Abu Dhabi Biennale, the Royal College of Arts in London, the Cité Internationale des Arts and the Institut du Monde Arabe in Paris. His works are also present in public (Mathaf, Doha) and private collections.