SYRIA.ART – Association pour la Promotion de l’Art Contemporain Syrien

The Association pour la Promotion de l’Art Contemporain Syrien seeks to provide a diverse, open overview of the Syrian art scene and its talented Syrian artists, and to shed light on the dynamism currently characterising Contemporary Syrian Art in Syria, France, Europe and the rest of the world.

SYRIA.ART seeks to promote Contemporary Syrian Art, artists, ideas and works, while also encouraging artistic exchange and dialogue between cultures. SYRIA.ART is deliberately apolitical, highlights art, artistic creations and beauty, and pays tribute to Syrian art and the creativity and talent of Syrian artists. It is all part of a philanthropic initiative advocating the values of interartistic and intercultural dialogue.

Led by Khaled Youssef, SYRIA.ART – Association pour la Promotion de l’Art Contemporain Syrien brings together many collectors and lovers of contemporary art, who are dedicated to creative ventures. Inspired by its members or private collectors, backed by sponsor companies, and working in close partnership with public institutions, SYRIA.ART’s mission is to help boost the international influence if the Syrian art scene, and to encourage collecting.

SYRIA.ART’s activities revolve around three main areas:


SYRIA.ART aims to promote Contemporary Syrian Art, as well as Syrian culture, literature and music, to Western audiences; and to promote and create a network for artistic, cultural, literary and musical exchange about Contemporary Syrian Art in France and on the international stage.

Exhibitions on the Syrian art scene – In France and internationally

In order to showcase the latest Syrian creations, SYRIA.ART organises exhibitions providing a diverse, open overview of the Syrian art scene and talented contemporary Syrian artists. Exhibitions are held in France (art galleries, regional museums, cultural centres, etc.) and various other countries: Europe (German, Luxembourg, Netherlands), Canada (British Columbia), and the USA (Vermont). These exhibitions shed valuable light on the current dynamism in Contemporary Syrian Art in Syria, Europe and the rest of the role, and on the role played by private collectors.

Collectors’ platform

SYRIA.ART also considers itself a place for lovers of contemporary art, and specifically Contemporary Syrian Art, to flourish, offering its members several opportunities to hone their « eye » for collecting: meetings with artists, visits to exhibitions, museums and fairs, introductory workshops and artistic discovering workshops on Contemporary Syrian Art, etc.


The 21st century is one of globalisation and conflicts, but also exchanges between countries all over the world. The rhythm of these exchanges is distinguished by speed, increased action, a mix of cultures, and an intertwining of languages. Progress has its advantages, as well as its disadvantages, including the disappearance of varied art-promotion initiatives, to the detriment of artists and collectors.

Some of the founding members or other members of SYRIA.ART have experienced exile, while others continue to live it after many years, far away from their home country of Syria. They have been able to develop their skills in art, culture, literature and music. They have fostered close friendships, work relationships, and life partnerships with colleagues from France and many other countries across Europe and the rest of the world.

We find that France and Europe do not have many spaces appropriate and open to Syrian artists living outside their country. They were the inspiration for SYRIA.ART, which seeks to honour representative contemporary Syrian artists working in the plastic and visual arts (painting, sculpture, photography, digital arts, installations, video), as well as in the cultural, literary and musical fields.

SYRIA.ART strives to bring together the most innovative Syrian artists of their respective generations, and encourage all forms of new art which stimulate creativity. Its vocation is to create a meeting place to allow a new generation of Syrian artists to enjoy a setup which recognises them, enables greater visibility for their artwork, and helps them with their international careers.

SYRIA.ART does, however, intend to go beyond this initial idea. While the Association has set itself the aim of promoting Contemporary Syrian Art to Western audiences, it also seeks to incorporate schools of thought, artistic productions and initiatives straight out of Syria, and bring them to live in conjunction, in comparison and in synergy with works by artists from the international Syrian Diaspora.

The Diaspora does indeed have an abundance of talents, artists, creators of all kinds of contemporary art, writers, poets and musicians; they have just never had the time or opportunity to focus on their exhibitions and promote their artistic, literary or musical work. SYRIA.ART aims to uncover these talents, and relieve them of their promotional duties.


Within the association, SYRIA.ART strives to work on new forms of discussion. The reception area is also a place of meetings, creation, mediation and publication. A place where creation and innovation play a fundamental role, based on the ethical view of respecting others’ expressions, rejecting any system of segregation or exclusion, and rejecting political rhetoric of any kind.

SYRIA.ART is thus a key player when it comes to interartistic and intercultural issues. Its aim is not only to highlight the great complexity and pluralism of Contemporary Syrian Art and the talent of Syrian artists, but also to raise the general public’s awareness of the extraordinary richness of Syrian culture – from a deeply humanist, apolitical perspective.


Khaled Youssef, President
Humam Alsalim, Vice President
Eric Cara, Secretary General
Frédéric Castellino, Treasurer


Danii Kessjan

© Copyright 2016 SYRIA.ART – Association pour la Promotion de l’Art Contemporain Syrien – Association governed by law 1901, established on 6 July 2016. (Included in the French Official Journal on 16 July 2016, under announcement number : 55, and publication number: 20160029)


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