Thursday, June 22, 2017

Beirut '71 (maillot) - questioning history (20)

Artworks by Tarek Chemaly
Women in Lebanon, in a law dating back to 1941 are forbidden to wear two piece Bikinis or short shorts. On June 30th 1964 a photo appeared in l'Orient Le Jour with a monokini which had indentations to allow the breasts to be shown. A shop displayed it in the window with the words "this bathing suit is forbidden" - in 1971 the British Pathe came to the St. George Yacht Motor Club and shot footage there focusing on sensitive areas of women's bodies. With social customs going back and forth in Lebanon between liberalism and conservatism, the question remains what is allowed and is not, and who allows it and who does not.