"The Stinky Singer / The Sultan of Tarab"
Installation, taxidermy animal, neon, sound, 2015. Courtesy of the artist and Kalfayan Galleries.
Raed Yassin’s "The Stinky Singer / The Sultan of Tarab" is an allegorical work about the life of pop stars who’ve briefly had their moment in the limelight, but have long since seen their star fade and disappear. Once free spirits, these now lone singers never managed to figure out the ropes of staying successful in the music industry. The mummified skunk or "Stinky Singer" represents one such star. The animal sings his unique story through an Arabic "Mawwal" (lamentation) song, remembering his former shining self as his coarse exhausted voice reflects his current miserable status. "Stinky Singer" is the first of a series that explores the variations of these faded pop star characters.
Raed Yassin was born in Beirut in 1979. He graduated from the theater department at the Institute of Fine Arts in Beirut in 2003. An artist and musician, Yassin's work often originates from an examination of his personal narratives and their workings within a collective history, through the lens of consumer culture and mass production. He has exhibited and performed his work in numerous museums, festivals and venues across Europe, the Middle East, the United States and Japan.
Yassin was awarded the Fidus Prize (2009), the Abraaj Capital Art Prize (2012), the AFAC grant for production (2010), the YATF grant for production (2008 & 2012) and the Cultural Resource grant for production (2008). Yassin is one of the organizers of IRTIJAL Festival, has released several music albums including as one half of Praed, and founded the production company Annihaya in 2009. He is also a founding member of "Atfal Ahdath" a Beirut based art collective.
Yassin currently lives and works in Beirut and is represented by Kalfayan Galleries (Athens–Thessaloniki).