Huguette Caland, Helen, 1967, oil on linen, 28 x 34".

Huguette Caland

Beirut Exhibition Center

Huguette Caland, Helen, 1967, oil on linen, 28 x 34".

The Lebanese-born, California-based artist Huguette Caland has burned through numerous styles, moods, and media in the five decades since she made her first painting, a monochrome titled Red Sun, to mark the death of her father in 1964. At the Beirut Exhibition Center, the work was placed just inside the entrance, where it marked the beginning and end points of Caland’s first retrospective in Lebanon, which took a full-circle tour through the three major historical phases of her work. Produced as a ruminative elegy to her father, Bechara El- Khoury—who was Lebanon’s first postindependence president and a nationalist hero—after she nursed him through a five-year struggle with cancer, the piece is also the defiant act of a thirty-three-year-old woman announcing the start of a new life. Faint gradations and delicate brushstrokes distinguish rings of concentric circles like

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