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Fall 2008 Vol. VII, No. 1

From the Editors

Artes Liberales

On our campus, the Department of Fine Arts and Art History (FAAH), which was relaunched in 2005 after a 20 year hiatus, deftly illustrates the advantages of the liberal arts tradition: here we find chemists learning art restoration, the artist pursuing chemistry, the nutritionist discovering painting. To learn about the history of the fine arts at AUB and in Lebanon, we spoke with artist and art critic Helen Khal (see “Beirut: A World of Art”), who shares 60 years of memories of the most prominent Lebanese artists of the 20th century—many of whom taught and studied at AUB. Selected artwork by her friends, colleagues and AUB alumni provide illustration, and what we could show is by no means exhaustive. Instead, we hope that this will spark in a few readers some new passion for art, Lebanese and otherwise. In preparing this issue, we found wonderful artwork being produced by our students, which is featured throughout the calendar at the center of the magazine. The closing pages tell the story of the current art scene at AUB.

A final note of thanks to the AUB Art Committee; to the faculty members in the departments of Fine Arts and Art History and Architecture and Graphic Design for their wealth of knowledge and bounty of high resolution images; to the Jafet Library Archives and Special Collections for digging through piles of pen and ink sketches and ancient yearbooks; and to AUB photographer Mazen Jannoun for his many contributions to MainGate. We wish him best of luck and future success in his new endeavors.

You’ll find much more in MainGate on-line.

Ada H. Porter and Ibrahim Khoury
Coeditors, MainGate
maingate@aub.edu.lb