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Rafik begins to move into a solitary drift in 1995 transitioning way from the predictable orderliness of his paintings, charting the direction of his artwork into unknown territory.
Beirut at the time was a city as fractured and vibrant as the art Rafik created. He observes and internalizes the compound feelings of political, economic, and social ambiguity the youth, known as ‘the lost generation’ of the Lebanese civil war, were feeling.
It was in this visual setting Rafik cast some of his first works intended for the public to see to make a direct statement about the about the absurd undercurrent state of disillusionment, paranoia and despair in Lebanese politics and cosmopolitan society.
Rafik’s mixed-media including acrylic hand-paint on plywood, chalkboard and cardboard imagery, play-on-words, street signage, and advertising posters were depicting a new visual repertoire to help us see through power structures of ideology, propaganda, and advertising in bold new ways.
In the absence of trustworthy ideologies and credible political programs, Rafik dares to laugh off the “horrors of deliberate deviance” in a devalued world. The arrogant intellectual world, he perceives, is a personal assault on a population of young people who will inevitably inherit the consequences of their deeds.
By taking the chances he wanted, speaking his mind, Rafik will become one of the first few artists of the post-war generation to rouse a strong imposition within the contrived Lebanese Arts Establishment and position himself as force to be reckoned with among his contemporaries.