SPEAKING OF BEIRUT AND THE CITY IS MISSING
BERIT SCHUCK & JULIA TIEKE
“Speaking of Beirut and the City is Missing” comprises seven pieces for headphones that aim at augmenting the reality of certain public places and buildings in Beirut. Based on interviews with artists, filmmakers and mavericks who were born in Lebanon but now live in Berlin, the work mixes personal stories about the past, present and future of the city with sounds that define Beirut today. “Speaking of Beirut and the City is Missing” can be explored online, but we recommend listening to the project via smart phones on the ground, because if the listener physically participates in the audio performance, walking and talking in the streets of Beirut, he or she can better compare the audio-image with the personal experiences behind the places and buildings selected for the project. Also, by walking and talking in the streets of Beirut, each listener not only discovers the urban reality of the city, but may change, interrupt and transform it as well. We would like to add that our creation is a work-in-progress. We have invited other artists and curators, based in many distant cities, to create audio pieces with Lebanese people living in exile, and we will later publish them on the project’s weblog under a creative commons licence 3.0. The locations already covered are the Beirut Art Center, the Electricity Building aks E.D.L., a parking lot near Monot street, the Charles Helou bus station, the Holiday Inn, a café on the Corniche and a bar in Hamra. All audio pieces are in Arabic and English or in Arabic and German. More foreign languages will be added later.