The Happy Childhood Foundation – Lebanon, originally the Philippe Hatem Foundation for a Happy Childhood, has a simple objective which is to bring happiness and put smiles on the face of as many children as possible, without any form of discrimination.
Our mission is to make the less fortunate children happier, eager to live and mature into good people. By doing so, to make a positive and long-lasting contribution in turning our world into a better place.
HCF is organizing the second edition of HCF Lebanon’s auction, the proceeds of which will contribute to support our children programs in Lebanon mainly the extension project of Laetitia Hatem Rehabilitation Centre (LHRC) at Hotel Dieu de France.
Amira Rizk, member of the Board of HCF Lebanon and President of its Events Committee:
«After the success of our first auction in 2015, special congratulations from Christie’s and the encouragement of our supporting audience, we decided to organize the second edition of our auction event.»
«This time, we focused on contemporary artists only, increased the number of lots and partnered with leading galleries in London and the Middle East. We also formed an Advisory Board of experienced art collectors who helped us in setting the strategy of the auction and in selecting the art works.»
Among the key artists offering art pieces for the auction are Martin Kline and Basbous.
Interview of Martin Kline
Does contemporary art reflect society, individuals, politics or particular groups in society? Art reflects all manner of human activity and emotion. Different artists address their individual interests and concerns in the intellectual, spiritual and physical world. What we portray we deem important to us individually and perhaps on the bigger scale, to humanity.
What is the main message conveyed through your artwork? I would say that I’m more concerned with feeling and emotion over a message per se.
What do you communicate through art? The artist conveys the inner self in the art object.
Why did you choose these specific artworks for the «Happy Childhood Foundation» art auction? The flower and the heart are perfect metaphors for children who must be nurtured and cared for.
You will be among many artists who will participate in The Happy Childhood Foundation’s second auction. Can you share with us your feelings towards this participation? I met Amira Rezik in New York and agreed to participate in this worthy cause. I’m happy to be included in support of the foundation that is doing vital work for children around the world.
How has the role of the artist in the world changed over time? The artist is a part of the intellectual and spiritual culture in our current time. How his role has changed over the centuries is a huge subject!
What is the relationship between tradition and contemporary art? The art of the past must neither be ignored nor must it be repeated. Tradition must fuse with the present.
What does inspire you mostly before starting an artwork? There is a quote from Thomas Edison, something along the lines of his work being 1% inspiration and 99% perspiration. The percentages might be off a bit! But I would say that the discipline of and in the studio, and the process of making art allows for this thing we call inspiration. An internal logic fuels and directs the artist.
Does your artwork reflect your unconsciousness? More of surrealism? Most probably art can reflect the unconscious—which we can’t really measure—but we can see that art sometimes reflects the subconscious and dream state. Artists make assignments for themselves and pursue the branches of inquiry which can be short or long limbs of the tree of their work, of their oeuvre.
If you had three words to express to the world, what would they be? Peace, Joy, Work!
Interview of Basbous
Does contemporary art reflect society, individuals, politics or particular groups in society? Alfred Basbous Foundation runs the estate of the artist Alfred Basbous ( I am his son and not the artist, am sure you know but to prevent mistakes).
What is the main message conveyed through your artwork? Basbous’s works express a lifelong exploration of the human form and its abstract properties. Focused on the aesthetic principles of shape, movement, line and material, his sculptures display a deeply ingrained sincerity and a search for the essence of beauty. Working in the tradition of sculptors such as Jean Arp, Constantin Brâncuși and Henry Moore, Alfred Basbous explores the potential of noble materials such as bronze, wood and marble to express the sensuality and purity of the human form. This aversion towards frivolous and meaningless embellishments echoes his own philosophy of simplicity and earnestnes
Why did you choose these specific artworks for the «Happy Childhood Foundation» art auction? The Foundation selection was a piece titled «Phoenician head» it’s a figurative and minimalist abstraction, a style that Alfred Basbous was a master in sculpting those elegant minimal lines that end up giving shape to an abstract figure with harmony and meticulous aesthetic beauty .
You will be among many artists who will participate in The Happy Childhood Foundation’s second auction. Can you share with us your feelings towards this participation? Alfred Basbous founded the Alfred Basbous Foundation in 2004 and our main aim and target alongside promoting modern art in general and Alfred Basbous in specific is to support philanthropic work and efforts. We are extremely delighted to have the chance to be part of such a prestigious and noble efforts that your association is making life better and happier for the ones who needed the most.
Does your artwork reflect your unconsciousness?More of surrealism? Alfred Basbous art is far from surrealism, The art of Alfred Basbous sings songs of modification. In his best works, he strays away from the embellished, the pleasant, and the elegant, towards the aesthetic intimacy that’s found in conflict, in addition to the conflict in the work itself. His works are not portrayals of reality, they are impressions of reality he poses towards us. Beauty is in perfect harmony among the different elements of work, such as matter, masses, forms, strokes, surfaces, and cosmoses. This is when our unconscious is unveiled, and the flares and secrets of the universe mystify us.