Maroun Hakim (whose signature is M. HAKIM) is one of the most renowned figures in Lebanese contemporary art. Born in 1950 in Mazraat Yachouh, Northern Metn, he completed his university education in Beirut and Rome. Professor at the Faculty of Fine Arts and Architecture at the Lebanese University from 1979 to 2014, he held the position of head of the department of Plastic Arts from 1989 to 2014. President of the Association of Lebanese Painters and Sculptors of 1998 to 2000, he founded the Union of Lebanese Plastic Artists in 2002 and was its President from 2002 to 2009. He presented 37 individual exhibitions in Lebanon and abroad and participated in 70 group exhibitions in Lebanon and in different countries. His works can be found in various establishments, museums and public gardens. His publications apart from exhibition catalogs are two books, “Rearview Mirrors” in 2015 and “A Life in Art” in 2020. He currently devotes himself to art and spends most of his time creating in his studio located in his village in Mazraat Yachouh.
For more than fifty years, he has moved between sculpture and painting with the same ease and above all with the same love. He is not a painter or sculptor; he is both at the same time. His relationship with color is vital, his work is a continuous elaboration of the techniques and capabilities of the material. He never stops experimenting with textures and means of expression: acrylic, watercolor, gouache, pastel and oil, infusing any material with the richness and passionate variations of his heart and his spirit, never forgetting in the tracing of lines and the virtual play of volumes that he is also a sculptor.
His relationship with stone and wood is this visceral relationship of man with the earth, but which reveals itself in sculpture as a happy encounter between volume and color, form and background. The artist seeks to go ever further in the junction of painting and sculpture, this is how the sculpted painting and the modeled canvas were born. On the same flat support, he combines the skillful modeling of fabric or the relief work of wood with the fluid or dense expression of color. In his more or less recent experiments, iron is integrated with wood in an innovation which pushes the creative adventure ever further and leads to a stage where he sculpts iron and creates several works which reveal the advantages and hard characteristics, resistant and malleable at the same time. The latter identify with the images present in his imagination with all the possibilities and innovations that ensue. The artist recently chose 12 sculptures that he created between 1992 and 2021 and had them cast in bronze, because these works show the evolution of his style in sculpture.
Maroun Hakim affirms that “Art is a celestial breeze giving, through creation, a particular and new shine to every detail of life, which has become in the course of everyday life a pale and dull element.”