Letitia Gallery is thrilled to present as its inaugural exhibition Under the Same Moon, bringing together a new body of paintings and drawings by British artist Eileen Cooper OBE RA. This is the first exhibition of Cooper’s work in Beirut, and her eloquent engagement with Lebanese themes represent Cooper’s exceptional ability to reveal the poetics of the world.
Letitia Gallery is a contemporary art gallery in Beirut dedicated to facilitating engagement with contemporary art in Lebanon through the exhibition of local and international artists. We are interested in innovative and inspired approaches to art-making and, for our first year of programming, have collaborated with leading members of the art world to discover and present work across disciplines and regions — representing Letitia Gallery’s passion for the exhilarating breadth of contemporary art.
Beirut already occupies a unique place in the arts. With a rich history and an ever-growing engagement with contemporary art, Beirut is known for artists and exhibitions of surpassing formal skill and conceptual engagement. Additionally, Lebanon’s cultural community is in close conversation with a variety of international interlocutors. Letitia Gallery is proud to present Eileen Cooper’s work as its opening foray into this vital community.
Active since the 1970s, Cooper brings a prestigious practice to Letitia Gallery. Trained at Goldsmiths College and Royal College of Art, Cooper served as the first female Keeper of the Royal Academy and her work has shown extensively in the United Kingdom, Europe, North American, and Asia. Cooper’s sensual figuration makes use of symbology and visual metaphor, imbuing each canvass with a sense of magic realism. The subjects of her canvasses engage deeply with the natural world, both corporeally and emotionally, showcasing Cooper’s unique phenomenology of a decidedly female experience.
For Under the Same Moon, Cooper has been inspired by Lebanese history and landscape, tracing elegant linkages between nature, the body, and cultural history. The cedar trees of Lebanon are a particularly evocative presence in a new series of paintings and drawings that depict a multitude of relationships to this potent symbol. Mosaics also feature strongly, speaking to the intricacies of Lebanese art and design with which Cooper is in dialogue.
Letitia Gallery is very grateful to those collaborators who have made this exhibition possible; Monique Bellan, Nadia von Maltzahn, Anna McNay, Malcolm Southward [names from Annie]. We extend our especial gratitude to Eileen Cooper whose curiosity, vision, and artistry have set a tremendously high bar for the future of Letitia Gallery.
- Annie Vartivarian
Co-founder, Letitia Gallery