The Conservation of Post-War Culture

In a place where the state of uncertainty is an everyday norm, where ways of seeking comfort from destruction has instigated, the growth of Beirut’s nightlife has become the culture of the indigenous population. Lebanon’s unstable political state has a 15-year history dating back to it’s civil war.
Has this violence and uncertainty generated a capital that won’t stop partying?

Introducing a popular subculture to iconic remains affected by the civil war has become a “trend” in Beirut in order to protest for cultural preservation to future developments.
It has become a refuge and comfort in the chaos of a politically unstable country where the Lebanese are re-defining a war-torn architecture or a space for the purpose of “freedom”. This ´state of uncertainty´ driven phenomena has been triggered by the rising number of developments eradicating existing heritage.

My interest lies in the exploration and experimentation of reusing existing devastated history to preserve the cultural heritage.

st george yacht club
St. George Hotel, “once a symbol of Beirut’s golden age” was destroyed during the civil war and now left in a hollow shell with a protest sign against the company responsible for redeveloping Beirut; Solidere. Today, the terrace of St. George´s is the venue of pop-up clubs where partying underneath an abandoned hotel in the capital has become the new ‘normal’.
Photograph: Joseph Eid

Vanessa Assaf


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