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Clément Tannouri livre, book Lebanon, earth as in Heaven preface Said Akl  
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LebanonPostcard presents a value Book: Liban: Sur la Terre comme au Ciel -
Lebanon: On Earth as it is in Heaven -
كتاب لبنان: من السماء كذلك على الأرض

Clément Tannouri spent more than three years conducting research and dozens of flights over Lebanon in order to capture the most beautiful and eloquent images that would best illustrate the 70 extracts from the Holy Bible where the word Lebanon is mentioned. It is a huge task, an act of faith that is definitely not a biblical reference but rather an emotional, sacred and patriotic glance at a country, a religion and a spirituality that are present in magnificent landscape seen from the sky through the heart.


Hard Cover 33 x 25 x 3 cm - 320 pages
In three Languages Arabic - French - English
- Captures of the Book and the Article of Poet Said Akl (In French) -

Read the Foreword by Raymond Audi

It is by its sole beauty that Lebanon has always managed to categorically oppose all the destructive forces that have so often ventured on its territory. Of course, this land of contrasts and similarities to which the prophets ceaselessly paid homage has been marked ever since biblical times by a number of scars. Men did not spare it, seeing in it perhaps an arrogant perfection which could only humiliate them through comparison. Irritable and insatiable, whimsical and malicious, men started to disfigure this land that welcomed them unconditionally, although they were the transient ones and it was the permanent one. What a terrible ingratitude, what a abysmal jealousy that make them forget they should live on that land as poets, because they have to celebrate its beauty, throughout these seasons of the heart that can alone give it its colors and shapes. They should also be poets because they have to disclose the promises of the land and impregnate spirits with the sense or the taste of the sacred. If a country isn’t a source of happiness, is it really a country? I mean, is it worthy for us to recognize ourselves in it?

Clément Tannouri is watchful over the richness of contrasts. We should be grateful to him. His faith in Lebanon is the one of a convert, and he does not hide it: how blessed are the converted to the love of the homeland! Summoning in the same melting pot the instantaneous and the continuous, verses and images, the earth and the sky, the known and the unknown, he offers this immemorial earth and our enchantment an unexpected gift. It is a mirror in which one can calmly contemplate oneself, enjoy oneself, and love oneself. Doesn’t Lebanon need it, as this country so seldom smiles at fortune – not the one it has but rather the one it is? Not only is this mirror photographical but also magical: no wrinkles can be seen. There is nothing but eternal youth; nothing but an effortless promise of happiness. For this blissful contemplation, the Bible yields its verses from a time when the divine still knew how to wither the pride of men, and hence serves as an escort for the passage of glances. When Lebanon is thus seen from above, at the level of the clouds, kneaded by the hands of the eternal sculptor, you catch it in an unguarded moment, in a sort of virginity or even nudity, which nonetheless induces in us an outburst of bashfulness. It is a strange bashfulness that I felt and that I wish to share today with all the fans of this beautiful book. For once, Lebanon is seen from above, but let us not delude ourselves on this distance. It has nothing to do with arrogance or this indescribable morgue that inspires Man his hopeless Promethean feeling. Moreover, the lesson is rapidly learnt as soon as the book is closed and before it is reopened: the higher one goes, the more one enjoys the depth of time. The higher one goes, the less one occupies space between one and oneself. This is the charm of distance, which has a temporal measure that might as well be unfathomable.

Avant-Propos par Raymond Audi

C’est par sa seule beauté que le Liban a toujours réussi à opposer une fin de non-recevoir aux forces de destruction qui, si souvent, s’y sont risquées. Certes, cette terre de contrastes et de rencontres à laquelle les Prophètes n’ont pas cessé de rendre hommage, est marquée, depuis les temps bibliques jusqu’à nos jours, par nombre de cicatrices: les hommes ne l’ont pas ménagée, voyant peut-être en elle une arrogante perfection qui, par comparaison, ne pouvait que les humilier. Coléreux et insatiables, capricieux et malveillants, les hommes se sont pris en effet à défigurer cette terre qui les accueillait sans condition, eux qui y sont de fait toujours de passage, alors qu’elle, elle demeure. Terrible ingratitude, jalousie abyssale, qui leur font oublier que la terre, il leur est demandé de l’habiter en poètes. Poètes, parce qu’ils ont à en célébrer les bienfaits, au rythme de ces saisons du cœur qui seules lui donnent ses couleurs et ses formes. Poètes aussi, parce qu’il leur incombe de révéler les promesses de la terre comme de féconder dans les esprits le sens ou le goût du sacré. Si un pays ne s’appelle pas bonheur, est-ce vraiment un pays? Je veux dire: vaut-il qu’on s’y reconnaisse?

Clément Tannouri veille sur la richesse des contrastes. Il faut lui en savoir gré. Sa foi dans le Liban est celle d’un prosélyte, et il ne s’en cache pas: heureux les convertis à l’amour du pays! Convoquant dans un même creuset l’instantané et le continu, le verset et l’image, la terre et le ciel, le connu et l’inconnu, il offre à cette terre immémoriale comme à notre enchantement un cadeau inattendu: un miroir, dans lequel il puisse calmement se contempler, jouir de lui-même, s’aimer. Le Liban n’en a-t-il pas besoin, lui qui sourit si peu souvent à la chance, non pas qu’il a mais qu’il est? Photographique, ce miroir n’en est pas moins magique: nulle ride sur le visage y paraît. Qu’une jeunesse éternelle. Qu’une promesse de bonheur sans peine renouvelée. Pour cette bienheureuse contemplation, la Bible livre ses couplets d’un temps où le divin savait encore flétrir l’orgueil des hommes, et sert ainsi d’escorte à la traversée des regards. Le Liban vu de haut, à hauteur des nuages, pétri par la main du Sculpteur Éternel: c’est le surprendre sans qu’il n’y prenne garde, sans qu’il ne s’y attende, dans une sorte de virginité, ou même de nudité, qui n’est pas sans provoquer en nous comme un accès de pudeur. Pudeur étrange, que j’ai éprouvée contre toute attente, et que je souhaite aujourd’hui partager avec tous les amateurs de ce beau livre. Pour une fois, le Liban est vu de haut, mais ne nous trompons pas sur cette hauteur: elle n’est en rien hautaine, elle ignore tout de cette morgue inqualifiable qu’inspire à l’homme son prométhéisme indécrottable. La leçon est du reste vite tirée, une fois le livre refermé et avant de le rouvrir: plus on s’élève et plus on jouit de la profondeur du temps. Plus on s’élève et moins on occupe l’espace entre soi et soi-même. Charme de la distance, dont la mesure est temporelle, autant dire insondable.


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