M Square Gallery: traditional and contemporary in the heart of Beirut

M.Square Gallery in Beirut. (Supplied)
Updated 03 January 2019

M Square Gallery: traditional and contemporary in the heart of Beirut

  • M.Square Gallery brings together antiquities with modern and contemporary art
  • A reflection of a mother and daughter team

BEIRUT: In the heart of Beirut, the beautifully lit M Square Gallery displays modern and contemporary antiquities created by international artists. 

It is a reflection of the mother-and-daughter team behind it. Maya Raad has more than 16 years’ experience with her Maison & Objet boutiques, while her mother, Maha Ammache, has over 30 years of experience in antiquities and art.

While the gallery organizes events and exhibitions in collaboration with art centers and international artists, it also serves as a conceptual store, split into different sections offering home décor and small accessories, as well as larger modern sculpture and antique pieces. 

You will find a variety of items of all prices to buy or simply marvel at, including works by the following artists.

Joseph

Joseph is a French artist who works and lives in the south of France. His pieces are influenced by pop culture and are meant to be provocative. 

JonOne

Born in New York, JonOne grew up in the graffiti-rich neighborhood of Harlem in New York and was consequently introduced to street art at a very young age. 

In 1984, JonOne founded graffiti group 156 All Starz, which consisted of a group of people who used graffiti as an escape from their daily struggles. He then moved to Paris, where he strengthened his technique. Now seen as an old-school graffiti artist with a twist, JonOne loves scribbles and started using canvases with an explosion of colors.

Fereydoon Omidi 

Born in 1967 in Iran, Omidi is known for his work with letters and the way he blurs them into endless variations. He uses harmonic movement in his brush work and a series of letters to emphasize a shift in perception, mood or vision. While the letters look like they are interlinked and thus resemble verses, they are actually separated and make for good optical illusions on canvases.

 


Stars of the 'The Kitchen' movie talk to Arab News

“The Kitchen,” stars Melissa McCarthy, Elisabeth Moss, Tiffany Haddish and Domhnall Gleeson. (Supplied)
Updated 22 August 2019

Stars of the 'The Kitchen' movie talk to Arab News

DUBAI: “The Kitchen,” starring Melissa McCarthy, Elisabeth Moss, Tiffany Haddish and Domhnall Gleeson, is an ode to the ever-popular gangster movie, but also a reimagining. Three women who can’t pay the bills after their mobster husbands go to prison decide to take over the organization themselves — becoming violent criminals in the process. Gone is the Don, in his place are the Donnas.

“I love mobster movies, they’re some of my favorite movies, but I think I always watched them and thought, ‘Where am I in that story? Where am I represented?’ I never am. The opportunity to put those two things together — a real authentic, gritty mob story that has interesting, flawed, human women at the center of it felt like an incredible opportunity,” writer/director Andrea Berloff tells Arab News.

Andrea Berloff at the premier of "The Kitchen" in Hollywood. (AFP)

In casting, Berloff went against type — McCarthy and Haddish are best-known for comedic roles, and Gleeson’s roles in “Star Wars” and the Oscar-nominated “Brooklyn” suggested anything but a gangster.

“If I’d read the script I wouldn’t have thought of me for the role, so I was thrilled that Andrea for some reason thought that I could do a good job. The good ones are a surprise to you as opposed to something you track down — or that’s the way it’s been for me so far. I never thought I’d really want to play a killer in a mob movie. When this script came along, that’s what I found a bit scary and interesting,” says Gleeson.

Domhnall Gleeson at the premier of "The Kitchen" in Hollywood. (AFP)

Like Berloff, Moss has always loved the genre — especially the women in legendary projects such as “The Godfather” and “The Sopranos.” While the women of “The Kitchen” are different in many ways from those groundbreaking characters, they carry on their spirit.

“It’s something that we’ve seen in various mobster projects. With Diane Keaton and Edie Falco, and these incredible portrayals, I always find them the most interesting parts of those projects — to see the effect that that lifestyle has on women is really interesting,” Moss tells Arab News.

Elisabeth Moss loved the genre of the movie. (AFP)

McCarthy wasn’t as focused on the history of women in crime fiction as her co-star. Instead, the character and the script were rich enough that she was able to link it to her own life quite easily.

“I didn’t reference other movies,” she says. “For me, when a script it that good, and that complete, and that fully realized, I try to delve into the character itself. I thought about how I related as a mother of two, and what does that mean when you’re just trying to survive and try to take care of your kids. I don’t look to other movies as a guide — I’m a big movie fan, but I prepare a little more solo.”

Tiffany Haddish at the premier of "The Kitchen" in Hollywood. (AFP)

“I’m the same way,” says Haddish.

“It just seemed easy. It’s that great thing. Especially with Andrea running the ship, we all saw the same movie, which was really great, and we all naturally get along,” says McCarthy.

 Melissa McCarthy at the premier of "The Kitchen" in Hollywood. (AFP)

This is Berloff’s debut as a director (she was nominated for an Oscar for writing the 2016 hit “Straight Outta Compton”) and she hadn’t originally planned on helming the movie herself. But she found she felt so passionate about the story that she wanted to oversee the whole project.

“There are times when I write a script and I’m happy to hand it off to someone else and let them run with it, but in this case I felt like I had so much more to say about these characters, and this world, and these themes,” she explains. “I went in to pitch as a director and started saying to them, ‘Here’s what’s not in the script that you don’t know.’”