Raed Yassin (Beirut, 1979) is the winner of the first edition of the Tosetti Value Award for photography, sponsored by Tosetti Value – Il Family office in partnership with Artissima. The award, in close dialogue with the project “Prospettive. The economy of images”, conceived and curated by Tosetti Value per l’Arte, aims to investigate the relationship between art and economics and is awarded to the artist whose photographic work is considered most effective in understanding the historical-social and economic situation of our globalized world.

The artist is presented by the gallery Isabelle van den Eynde, Dubai, United Arab Emirates.

The award has been assigned by an international jury composed of Joerg Bader, Director, Centre de la Photographie de Genève, Geneva, Walter Guadagnini, Director, CAMERA – Centro Italiano per la Fotografia, Torino, Francesco Jodice, artist, Giovanna Silva, editorial director, Edizioni Humboldt Books, Milano and Giulia Tosetti.

The jury unanimously awards the first edition of the Tosetti Value Award for photography to Raed Yassin, presented by Isabelle van den Eynde, because his work crosses different disciplines using the medium of photography to merge his personal history with collective memory. Appropriating cinema, music and pop culture in his work, the artist rewrites the history of the Middle-East through his personal lens both as an artist who has lived and grown in Beirut and someone actively engaged in the interpretation and dissemination of art as an intimate and performative social practice.

Raed Yassin’s work reveals a particular attention to the family values that are at the heart of Tosetti Value Family office activities. This is one of the reasons why the first edition of the Tosetti Value Award for Photography was assigned to this eclectic artist, who belongs to Lebanon, an area that today is deeply wounded and has historically played a fundamental role as a bridge between East and West.

In Dancing, Smoking, Kissing (2013), Yassin recreates scenes from lost family photographs based on personal recollection, his family’s memory and through his own imagination. Most of the artist’s family photographs were lost over time due to frequent moving and displacement, among other ways. These computer-generated illustrations are embroidered on factory-produced silk fabrics – depiction of personal moments rendered on mass-produced, decorative surfaces – to render intimate scenes of sensibility and domesticity.

“The embroidered works depict scenes or photographs from my childhood that were lost due to the constant movement and displacement we went through during the 1970s up until the 2000s in Lebanon. The photographic scenes are reconstructed from my memory because the photos don’t exist anymore. However, my memory is also using imagination to some extent, as I didn’t have an exact idea of what the actual photographs looked like. They were just scenes floating in my mind.”  

Raed Yassin bio

Raed Yassin (b. 1979, Beirut) lives and works in Beirut. He graduated from the Theatre Department of the Institute of Fine Arts in Beirut in 2003, and in 2015 he was awarded a research fellowship at the Akademie der Künste der Welt in Cologne.
An artist and musician, Yassin’s work often originates from an examination of his personal narratives and their position within a collective history, through the lens of consumer culture and mass production. One of the organisers of Irtijal Festival–Beirut’s experimental contemporary music festival–Yassin has released several music albums and founded the production company Annihaya in 2009. He is also a founding member of Atfal Ahdath, a Beirut-based art collective.

He has exhibited and performed in numerous museums, festivals and venues, including Witte de With Center for Contemporary Art, Rotterdam (2020); Sursock Museum, Beirut (2019); the Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum, New York (2016); Stedelijk Museum, Amsterdam (2014); Kunsthalle Wien (2015); Institute of Contemporary Arts (ICA) London (2014); Gwangju Museum of Art (2014); Castello di Rivoli, Turin (2014); Mori Art Museum, Tokyo (2012); New Museum, New York (2012); Centre Georges Pompidou, Paris (2011); and Delfina Foundation, London (residency 2014 and 2010-2011), amongst many.

Yassin is also a recipient of the AFAC grant for production (2019 and 2010), Sharjah Art Foundation Project Fund (2014), Abraaj Group Art Prize (2012), Fidus Prize (2009), YATF grant for production (2008 & 2012), the Cultural Resource grant for production (2008) and the Tosetti Value Award for Photography (2020).