Bibi Zogbé, Untitled, 1935, Oil on Mazonite, 51 x 65 cm
Courtesy of Agial Art Gallery
Agial Art Gallery, established in Beirut in 1990, is one of the leading destinations for modern and contemporary art from Lebanon and the Arab world. As a pioneering platform, Agial is showcasing a broad spectrum of regional art, from the most established artists to promising emerging artists, alongside retrospective exhibitions. The permanent collection of the gallery is host to an important historical survey of Middle Eastern art, having incubated and witnessed the profound transformation of artistic practices in one of the world’s most dynamic regions. Beyond the exhibition space in Ras Beirut, Agial is a global presence through participation in art fairs, off-site projects and publications, highlighting the role of the gallery in the promotion of Arab art.
Saloua Raouda Choucair
Abdul Rahman Katanani
Mohamad El Rawas
Houmam Al Sayed
Born in the Lebanese seaside village of Sahel Alma, Labibé Zogbé, known as Bibi emigrated to Argentina at the age of sixteen. Her professional artistic career began in the 1930’s with a number of exhibitions in Buenos Aires and Rio de Janeiro, in Chile and Uruguay, in Paris and elsewhere. At the end of the Second World War, she lived in Paris and Dakar and from there she went to Lebanon in 1947. Her long-awaited dream of returning to Lebanon came true and she was soon recognized as a successful and talented artist worthy of mention in the Bénézit. In that year, she held a one-woman show at the Cénacle Libanais.
It was from her first exhibition that Bibi Zogbé earned the title of «El Peintora des Flores» – for she invites us to savor the delightful perfumes of the flowers of her native land , that gloriously beautiful land of her forefathers. Her flowers are the microcosm of Lebanon, «Paradise of Eden» a garden endlessly in blossom, symbol of the birth to Life.
This profusion of flowers in her work evokes an eternal spring through the thousand vibrantly prismatic colors that blaze vividly through the swaying lacework of intertwining branches. With a «fanfare of colors», she depicts the bursting of life in the buds, bougainvillea in full bloom, the garlands of the coral tree, the freshness of white laurel or chrysanthemum, the flowering blossoms of the apple and the cherry tree.