Paint Beirut

Behind the nowadays famous colorful stairs that give Mar Mikhael a festive air, hides a group of young and motivated artists, the Dihzahyners. Meet the artists of our streets…

With a stroke of brush, the Dihzahyners have set up to embellish our country. The project was initiated by two young creatives passionate about graffiti and urban art, Lana Chukri and Jubran Elias. They studied design and wanted to bring their contribution to Lebanon through their art. With a dozen of artists and designers graduated fro, LAU in 2011, they launched the Paint Up initiative, bringing a touch of color to abandoned or destroyed locations. Each project is prepared to make sure the end result is luminous, vibrant and in harmony with the surroundings. The young talents take into consideration the opinion of artists and local residents in order for the latter to feel involved in the project and to feel a sense of belonging with the rejuvenated space. An ingenious yet simple method to embellish our public spaces, each oasis of color and beauty show us that with goodwill the face of Beyrouth can brighten up.

The Dihzahyners have already painted 8 stairs, from Geitawi to Sakiet el Janzir, passing by Mar Mikhael. One of the stairs, filmed by VICE News London even appeared in an international ad campaign for 7UP. They scattered their art in parcs and on benches ; in Geitawi, Bourj Hammoud or Sin el Fil. With oganizations such as Beirut Green Project, Save the Children, Beirut Art Center or Live Love Beirut, they have dressed up the walls of Beirut with their multicolored palette, such as the Bourj Hammoud bridge. A non profit organization, Paint up is a collaborative initiative, and neighborhood residents as well as volunteers are welcome to contribute to the diverse projects and contribute to the creative inspiration. The Dihzahyners have recently launched the Neighborhood Initiatives, longer term projects in which entire spaces of neighborhoods are renovated. In february and march 2016, along with three local artists and many volunteers, they have rejuvenated an abandoned garden in Nabaa while offering art workshops to residents, and they do not intend to stop there. Through street art, the Dihzahyners give colour to the grey concrete that surrounds us and energy to our city .

Article originally published in L’Orient le Jour Junior – May 2016 Issue