Director, Mathaf: Arab Museum of Modern Art
An expert in the arts and culture and heritage sectors in the Arab world, with a focus on photography, archives and modern and contemporary art from the region, Arida previously directed the Sursock Museum. In charge of reopening the museum after a ten-year renovation and expansion project, she was able to put back the museum on the map, leading special projects – exhibitions, public programmes, library and archives programmes – and turning the museum into a prominent cultural landmark and a main actor on the local and international art scenes. Following the damage caused by the Beirut blast in 2020, she raised more than 2.5 million dollars for the reconstruction of the building and the restoration of the artworks.
From 1997 to 2014, she was the director of the Arab Image Foundation (AIF), which she led and developed, contributing to building this unique photographic collection and initiating a number of artistic and photographic preservation projects, among them the MEPPI, a strategic multi-year program designed to raise awareness about the importance of preserving the region’s photographic heritage.
Arida also provides expertise to international private and public institutions as well as consultation to arts and culture organizations, artists and projects. She is currently a member of the Board of Directors of MUCEM, Marseille; a member of the Advisory Board of Darat al Funun, Amman; a member of the Arab Image Foundation; and a member of the Scientific Committee of the Art Mill Museum in Doha. She is a member of ICOM and CIMAM.