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Art & Culture
Fransabank sees through discretionary philanthropy and tactical partnerships a way to foster innovative programs that have the potential to create positive impact on the communities. The funds we invest in art and culture are used strategically to benefit the widest scope of the society.
Giving Art an Audience
Fransabank JABAL “Jeunes Artistes des Beaux-Arts du Liban” Exhibitions
Since 1998, JABAL exhibitions (Jeunes Artistes des Beaux Arts du Liban), aimed at promoting new Lebanese contemporary art. It has launched, over the years, more than 350 talents of young artists from different Lebanese regions, out of who more than fifty are today prides to the nation.
This initiative has taken shape through the Bank’s patronage of an annual art exhibition, which hosts and showcases the talent of dozens of artists who never previously had the opportunity to display their works to the public. It enjoys the full backing and sponsorship of the Bank. The invitees are potential buyers, media representatives and members of the general public, thus giving the young artists wide exposure and many opportunities to sell their work.
Through JABAL, new horizons have opened for many of the participating artists. Often they have gone on to hold solo and group exhibitions worldwide and to cultivate a name of renown for themselves in the art field. Some have been offered scholarships to pursue their art education as a result of having their work seen by art experts.
In addition to providing a forum for artists to exhibit their work, Fransabank makes a point of purchasing a collection from each participating artist. These works of art are displayed at the Bank’s headquarters and branches, thus giving the artists even greater exposure through our clients' base.
JABAL Historical Milestones
JABAL 1998: Burj Sbeih, Tripoli Al Mina, North of Lebanon
JABAL 1999: Ecole Supérieure des Affaires (ESA), Beirut
JABAL 2000: Khan el-Franj, Saida, South of Lebanon
JABAL 2001: Beit el-Herafi, Zouk Mikael, Mount Lebanon
JABAL 2002: Hotel Kadri, Zahle, Bekaa
JABAL 2003: Aley, Mount Lebanon
JABAL 2004: Paul Guiragossian Museum, New Jdeideh, Mount Lebanon
JABAL 2006: Fransabank Center, Hamra, Beirut
The ensuing war and political turmoil resulted in a temporary halt of JABAL annual exhibitions.
JABAL 2013: Le Gray Hotel, Beirut
JABAL 2014: Celebrated the 10th edition of JABAL at Le Gray Hotel, Beirut
JABAL 2015: St. George Hotel, Beirut
JABAL 2016: Zaitunay Bay, Beirut
Uplifting the Past
Fransabank’s support of culture has helped breathe new life into many of the country’s most important institutions, such as the Beirut Theater, which was successfully rehabilitated thanks to funding from the Bank following the end of the war in 1993. The National Museum is another recipient of donations from the Bank to ensure it retains its rightful place at the heart of the nation’s cultural offering. As the country emerged from the civil war, Fransabank saw the need to invest in hope for the future and felt compelled to contribute to the nation’s prosperity. With this in mind, the Bank was a major sponsor of the entire reconstruction and renovation of the National Museum. When it finally reopened in the late 1990s, after more than two decades of closure, the museum represented a new era in Lebanon’s cultural landscape, signaling the renaissance of the nation’s profile as a country of history, heritage and civilization rather than of war. Today it not only attracts schoolchildren eager to learn of their past but also tourists who discover Lebanon’s valuable contribution to the world.
The Bank believes in reaching out to the population at large through the medium of culture. This necessitates looking beyond the capital to other areas where financing for cultural projects can revitalize communities, cities and prospects. An example of this is the restoration of Tripoli’s historic Koura Square, which was carried out with the help of a USD 100,000 donation from Fransabank. The Koura Plaza project beautifully restored the area’s traditional building facades and invigorated its potential as a tourist destination in North Lebanon.
The Bank contributed also to the restoration of the Museum of Ehden “Koubra Monument” located in Ehden Town, North of Lebanon. The Koubra Monument is characterized for its authentic traditional Lebanese architecture, its patrimonial and historical values. In its support in restoring and maintaining Ehden’s historic charm, Fransabank once again takes the lead in all aspects of cultural heritage.
In addition to Al Urfan Institution for the orphans and needy people received a donation form Fransabank for its rehabilitation and for the purchase of equipment.
Fransabank Launches Warda El Jazairia’s Latest Video Clip “EYYAM”
Not only as a major regional financial player, but also as an advocate for life’s universal essence, love, peace and forgiveness, Fransabank Group launched Warda al Jazairia’s latest song “Eyyam.”
Honoring Warda Al Jazairia for her latest song “Eyyam”, in both Algeria and Beirut, came as an artistic initiative and tactful step from Fransabank Group to the icon of the Arab art, who has walked beyond the borders through her voice and her presence to enter every Arab home; and the pride was to Fransabank being a key partner in launching an event that tackles the essence of life.
Fransabank El Djazaïr, a banking subsidiary in Algeria, sponsored, through EURO 200,000, Warda’s video clip, which was produced in 2009 under the supervision of the diva but was finalized later, after the sudden death of the Algerian-Lebanese icon.
Strengthening Cultural Ties
Promoting Lebanon as a cultural destination is essential for the country’s prosperity, forging a more socially cohesive society on the one hand, while attracting tourism on the other.
And the most beautiful village in Lebanon is…
Fransabank, partnered up with the Ministry of Tourism in Lebanon and L’Orient le Jour newspaper, to launch a CSR initiative aiming at highlighting the charming rural areas of Lebanon, and promote rural tourism. It focuses primarily on pushing tourists, expatriates and residents to go outside the city and discover the natural, cultural, religious, archaeological and gastronomic deep of Lebanon.
Ten villages were nominated and Lebanese were invited to vote for their favorite one accordingly. The contestant villages for the year 2016 were: Old Akkar, Dhoor Chweir, Duma, Jezzine, Ehden, Hammana, Rashayya el-Wadi, Kfrazebian, Sarafand and Yammooneh. People had to vote for their favorite Lebanese village that they think deserves the title of the most beautiful village. The project will be spread over three consecutive years with 10 different villages for each year.
The beauty criterion is highlighted for a bigger aim which is the creation of jobs for inhabitants and boosting their steadfastness to their land. One way to contribute to sustainable development of the communities. It also aims to preserve the heritage and sites that are sometimes violated in terms of disrespect to the environment and relevant laws.
The initiative succeeded in attracting the Lebanese expatriates’ attention towards their home country. With nearly 122,000 voters and a major contribution from expatriates, Old Akkar or Akkar el-Atika received the title of the most beautiful village with 46.7% of the votes.
In addition, Fransabank regularly sponsors numerous art and music festivals in line with this belief. In this context, Fransabank grants its annual support to Beiteddine Art Festival, Baalbeck, Bustan, Batroun, Ehmej Festivals, among others, conveying their universal messages as an act of faith in Lebanon’s cultural role, an embodiment of ingenuity, a call for peace and a mirror of Lebanese prosperous history.
The Bank, as well, extended its support to the American University of Beirut (AUB) Zaki Nassif Program and sponsored a one- year schedule of concerts introducing classics in Lebanese and Oriental music at AUB's department of Fine Arts and Arts History; an innovative approach to penetrate to soul of the Lebanese youth and remind them of the true Lebanese culture and rich legacy. We also celebrated the World Theater Day by supporting a symposium organized by the Holy Spirit University of Kaslik - USEK entitled “Theater, Identity and Survive”.
From Istanbul to Marrakech – A World in Transition
A book published by Fransabank that includes 500 postcards that date back to the 19th and early 20th centuries that have never been exposed before. This book was made available to art scholars, collectors and art lovers, as well as to the public in general. It is a new initiative within the Bank’s series of initiatives to support all forms of art, culture and heritage.