We are an Internet Service Provider of finest visual arts images and creations, we act as a distribution agency of high quality photographs about the Middle Eastern and North African regions viewed from the inside. All of our images are directly downloadable for a fixed price and ready to be used in any printed or screened support.
Registered in 2004, the Arab Images Foundation® informally started its activities much earlier through the personal involvement of its founding members. In 1993, it reintroduced artistic photography in Lebanon by organizing the first post-conflict photography exhibition together with the first publication of the book "Les Enfants La Guerre, Liban 1985-1992" (Children at war, Lebanon, 1985-1992). After laying the groundwork for the Association de Sauvegarde du Patrimoine photographique Arabe (Association for the safeguarding of the Arab photographic patrimonium) in 1997, the Arab Images Foundation members' activities have centered on creating an institutional collection of regional historical photographs in Saudi-Arabia in 2000. Nowadays, the main activity of the AIF revolves around preserving and safe-keeping the Arabic photography heritage. This has resulted in books and photography exhibitions, and in promoting, rehabilitating, conserving and diffusing both historical and contemporary works.
Our activities include:
- creation and management of an online photography community concerned about the MENA region.
- photography assignments for: GEO magazine, Le Monde, Libération, Télérama Magazine in France. Die Weltwoche and Der Bund in Switzerland.
- publishing in co-edition with Actes-Sud (in France) of the book "Assaoudia", the second part of an Arab trilogy that started with "Mes Arabies", published in 1999 by the same publisher, and accompanied by an exhibition at the Rencontres Internationales de la Photographie in Arles, France.
- elaboration of the project "Mes Ententes'' (in English: Our Misunderstandings). Part of the AFKAR program, sponsored by the European Union and executed by the Office of Minister of State and Administrative Reform (OMSAR) in collaboration with the Delegation of the European Commission in Lebanon. The project established a field analysis of the situation of the return of displaced families from the civil war to Mount Lebanon. Production of a brochure to introduce the objectives and activities of the "Mes Ententes'' project to municipalities and interviews of individuals; the making of a book of photography and text (Arabic, French and English) entitled "Mes Ententes'' . Production of a 7-minute film accompanying the book, elaboration of a foldout for the book launch and exhibition which took place at Biel, Beirut. Installation of a website and forum, mesententes.com. A team of 11 collaborators was formed to produce this project: an art director, a project manager, two writers, a photographer, a coordinator, a film director, a graphic designer, an archivist, an accountant and a web developer.
- installation of the Images Center at the King Abdulaziz Public Library in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia. We established a methodology and policy for the conservation of the collection of historical photographs, the restoration and valuing of original documents. Organization of a treatment chain for digital images, initiation and formation of a team of five people to work on the functioning, the mechanism and the usage of this equipment to transfer the images to a digital format; development, programming and production of a database for the digital images in computerized networks. A team of five collaborators was formed to supervise the workgroups in place. We published and distributed research about the digital treatment of photographs and historical documents.
- production and publication of photographic research on Saudi Arabia featured in the January 2003 issue of the magazine «Du» in Zurich, Switzerland.
- organizing and producing of various exhibitions and conferences around the theme of "photography and its influence on our social life".
We thrive on producing exhibitions, books, films, DVD’s, and all supports promoting photography from the Middle Eas and North Africa.
Our collectors’ space, Arab Images Auction (arabimages.com), offers amateurs, private collectors, and professionals the opportunity to buy and sell vintage and collection prints.
We intend to host and promote a generation of young creators by giving them the opportunity to syndicate their works. We offer an associate status to professional photographers wishing to use our infrastructure to diffuse their archives.
We provide advanced users with solutions by giving them access to yet unexplored ” New Arab Realism”. We aim to be a central resource and meeting point for all issues and functions relating to photography and digital imaging. And we plan to serve on several levels to achieve that.
We offer expert consulting and advice for the Arab and African institutions and museums.
We Encourage and provide for amateurs and professional collectors the restoration of classical and digital photographs. Our head office, based in Beirut, allow and hearten a worldwide exchange of skills, ideas and information, by providing a forum for artists, scholars and any interested public audience.
We offer a professional platform for regional artists, and a discussion forum for all technical matters related to traditional photography and digital imaging.
All the benefices generated from our operations will be reinvested in the acquisition of existing collections of historical, modern and contemporary photographs and films.
Searching for the Arab identity:
"How is it possible to define the Arab identity in our society when it is increasingly so narrowly identified with Islam? Unfortunately, Westerners believe that being Arab necessarily means being Muslim. What a mistake they make! Overloaded by the news media, our minds do not stop accumulating such falsities. Amongst 1.6 billion Muslims throughout the world, Arabs represent only a minority today.
Misinterpretations of Islam and injustices committed in its name have led to many misunderstandings regarding the actual realities of the Arab world. I have made a great effort to accept realities without making any judgments. This has allowed me to adopt a better approach to understanding the problem that continues to feed the flame of hatred in the hearts of humans. If only we look at things simply, Islam is nothing other than the third monotheist religion born in this region.