Super-Private: Scenes 1/2/3/4/5/6 (Leporellos)

Paula Roush
leporello bookwork in six editions
In 2005, two dozen rolls of undeveloped 35mm film were deposited at the Arab Image Foundation. Stored in a bespoke wooden box, each film was carefully wrapped in protective foil and enclosed in individually fitted drawers. It was the work of a Lebanese banker and the photos were taken in 1950’s Beirut. Laying dormant until their discovery by paula in 2015, the photographs document the banker’s lovers and friends, a secret narrative opening a secret narrative beyond the strict family conventions of 50’s Beirut. The mysterious atmosphere in the photographs evoke a photo-roman noir including road trips, jet flights and secretive hotel room encounters. Was he following a script? Or did things just happen as life unraveled itself in a glamorous pre-war Beirut and Lebanon?