Signifying Bodies: Artistic Representations of Embodiments in the Works of Samir Khaddaje, Rabih Mroué and Lina Saneh

Author Bio: 

Zéna Meskaoui is an instructor of art history since 2003. She teaches at the Lebanese American University and American University of Beirut. Her research interests are centered on Lebanese and regional artistic production. It is both an experiment and a challenge as the models of the fields of art history, art criticism, and theory are geared towards the culture of the West. Her present research stems from a long interest in the human figure and the implicated consciousness of the artist’s and author’s individuality.


This essay highlights and examines a number of works by the artists Samir Khaddaje, Rabih Mroué and Lina Saneh that present and represent different forms of embodiment: the body pillar, the body ghost, the body in ruin, and the body battlefield. The inquiries of the artists draw on a number of underlays that characterize the contexts the works stem from, contexts that belong to different periods in time, yet present a number of common characteristics in which violence and silence are dominant. The works converge in both their sharing of the same topos: the body, and in their thinking about the meaning of the individual, the human being. The topos of the body allows them to anchor and exceed any given certitude about the individual, and exposes the fact that it is a reliable site despite, and maybe because of, its ability to encompass paradoxes.

Samir Khaddaje
Rabih Mroué
Lina Saneh
Visual Art
Generation of Artists
Cite This: 
Zéna M. Meskaoui. "Signifying Bodies: Artistic Representations of Embodiments in the Works of Samir Khaddaje, Rabih Mroué and Lina Saneh". Kohl: a Journal for Body and Gender Research Vol. 1 No. 1 (2015): pp. 70-81. (Last accessed on 29 November 2022). Available at: doi:

Copy and paste the URL link below:

Copy and paste the embed code below:

Copy and paste this code to your website.


Artwork by Monica Basbous