Like an abacus, The Chronicle is a time telling device that documents more than twenty years of the reconstruction and development of Beirut city center in the aftermath of the Lebanese war (1975-1990).
Introduced by a foldout table of contents that doubles as an annotated timeline, the publication unites two stitched volumes – a color photography archive of urban history and a chronology of events, each sequenced in reverse chronological order – with a folded map. The chronology is punctuated by interviews with an urban planner, legal expert, and architect, each representing a different generation and reflecting on the past two decades.
The binding encourages interactive reading of the two narratives, image and text: the photography volume opens to the right and the chronology to the left, thus exposing the inside spine of the jacket, marked with twenty-one silver strokes to form a vertical timeline. Both volumes are divided into year-by-year chapters, with the fore edge of every page marked by a stroke that corresponds to the marks of the vertical timeline, inviting readers to track – in image and text – the urban history of the Lebanese capital as they move back through time.