beirut

Fouad Elkoury, Oum Koulthoum Café in Luxor, 1990, ink-jet print, 23 3/4 × 35 1/2".

Fouad Elkoury

Galerie Tanit | Beirut

Fouad Elkoury, Oum Koulthoum Café in Luxor, 1990, ink-jet print, 23 3/4 × 35 1/2".

In 1849, Gustave Flaubert and Maxime Du Camp set off on an adventure to the East. For two young Frenchmen of the mid-nineteenth-century haute bourgeoisie, the East meant Egypt, so they made their way from Paris to Marseille, where they boarded a ship for Alexandria. From there they traveled south to Cairo and on to the city of Esna. They continued to Karnak, Beirut, and Jerusalem before heading home. Du Camp took more than two hundred pictures, many of which were bound into the book Egypte, Nubie, Palestine et Syrie (1852), a landmark in the history of photography. Flaubert, of course, found the will to write, as well as the name of a character who had been banging around in his brain: “Emma Bovary” clicked as he reached the top of a hill overlooking the Nile on one side, endless desert on the other.

One hundred and forty years later, the Lebanese photographer Fouad Elkoury set

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