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It's not that there's any critical consensus that the work of these artists is somehow "best".The Lebanese have Gibran. Once these "definitive" artists have been swept up in the commercial dust storm of pop culture, they can come to seem familiar in ways they're not.Aside from the charcoal sketches – self-portraits and a four-in-one study of the artist's longtime American patron and confident Mary Haskell – most of these works are landscapes.Spending a bit of time among the Beiteddine Palace exhibition allows you to momentarily forget Gibran's pop culture profile and focus on Gibran's contributions to visual art.In some cases the works make use of motifs reminiscent of those from another, much older, poet and visual artist, William Blake (1757-1827). In Gibran's watercolor "Union of Lovers," 1920-23, an angelic figure appears to be facilitating male and female nudes in a snog.
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