Rayyane Tabet
Steel Rings (KM 857, 1045, 1046, 1173, 1188) | 2013
5 rolled engraved steels. Dia. 80cm, width 10cm, thickness 6mm. unique From the series The Shortest Distance Between Two Points. Special edition commissioned by the Saradar Collection

Part of “The Shortest Distance Between Two Points” project, The “Steel Rings” are sculptures that replicate the TAPLine pipeline in ten centimeters sections. Each one is engraved with the distance from the pipe's source and its corresponding geographic coordinates, making each “Steel Ring” a unique piece. The rings in the Saradar Collection correspond to the five borders the pipeline crossed from Saudi Arabia to Lebanon. Passing through Jordan and Syria, one of its sections, situated in the Golan Heights, became under Israeli occupation after the June 1967 War, which jeopardized the pipeline’s sustainability. “The Shortest Distance Between Two Points” uses material from TAPLine as devices to propose an alternative way of traveling the region and understand its development. The TAPLine Company was established in 1946 as a joint venture between Caltex, Esso, and Mobil. TAPLine was formed to build and operate a 1213 kilometer long, 78 centimeter wide steel tube to transport oil by land from Saudi Arabia to Lebanon, crossing the border of five political entities in a region that is very conscious of its demarcated lines. In 1983, the line could no longer sustain the pressure from layered and adjacent political interests and the company was dissolved. The infrastructure, though deteriorated through disuse and abandonment, offers a link to the present through the past. The company's imprint is the record of a rise and a fall, and the arc that binds them. Its shadow runs parallel to the shifts in the land. Stationary, rulers, tags, logos, slides, lines and the pipe itself become specters through which to address the political, geographic and social transformations in the region since the end of World War II.

Reference RT-ISO-2013-A(1-5)

Biography of the artist

Born in Lebanon. 1983
Works and Lives in Beirut

Tabet began studying architecture at the American University of Beirut before transferring to The Cooper Union in 2004, where he received his B.Arch. in 2008. He received his MFA from the University of California, San Diego in 2011 before returning to live and work in Beirut in 2012. He is the recipient of the Emerging Artist Award of the Sharjah Biennial (2011), the Jury Prize of the Future Generation Art Prize (2012) and the Abraaj Group Art Prize (2013). His work was featured in the Sharjah Biennial X in 2011, The Ungovernables: The New Museum Triennial in 2012, the Venice Biennial in 2013, and The 2016 Marrakech Biennial. He is currently in Berlin as a 2016 DAAD art resident.