Art D’Égypte is a company founded by Nadine Abdel Ghaﬀar to support Egyptian art and culture. The company’s goal is to initiate strong local, regional and international collaborations to enhance and promote the vibrant Egyptian art scene. Yearly pop-up shows held in unique historic venues aim to shed light on the country’s rich cultural heritage and to connect Egypt’s artistic legacy with modern and contemporary works of art, thereby presenting a diﬀerent view of Egypt to the world.
NOTHING VANISHES EVERYTHING TRANSFORMS
This publication coincides with the exhibition Nothing Vanishes, Everything Transfroms on view from 27 October to 27 November 2018 at the Manial Palace and Museum, Cairo.
Curator Nadine A. Ghaffar Art D’Égypte Malak Shenouda Hana El Beblawy Book Design Jorell Legaspi Copyeditor Nevine Henein Project Manager Nadine A. Ghaffar
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Cover image: Abdallah Dawestashy
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WRITINGS ON ART
THE MANIAL PALACE
Nadine A. Ghaffar Curator and Founder Art D’Égypte
Nothing Vanishes, Everything Transforms On shared histories, crossroads, spaces, and transformations, Nothing Vanishes, Everything Transforms is an exhibition of a diverse selection of Egyptian contemporary art practices. The exhibition taps into the concepts of the virtual act of vanishing versus that of transformation to explore notions of space, physical matter and history. The diversity of contemporary Egyptian artistic expressions plays the role of a scientist in a laboratory, meticulously dissecting our spaces—intimate, personal, urban, physical, or other—and our times—actual, virtual or metaphoric. Egypt’s central location, between East and West, North and South, has attracted adventurers, traders and invaders for millennia, each settling for a day, a year, or for centuries. Every ‘element’ has added a layer of complexity and charm to the cultural fabric and social matrix of the country, building strata of a cross-cultural and hybridized present. The mosaic mortar in this construct is Ancient Egyptian, Mediterranean, Nubian, African, Arab, Persian, Phoenician, Aramaic, Ottoman, Mamluk, Greek, Armenian, Italian, French and British, to mention the essentials, all meticulously—and miraculously—woven together by a Judeo-Christian-Islamic thread, giving the country its unique cultural specificity, one that is dynamic and in a perpetual state of transformation. In their creative practices, contemporary Egyptian artists are both directly and indirectly influenced by their history—ancient and modern—and the contextual narrative they grew up in: memories of colonialism fuse with (his)stories of monarchies transforming into republics and identities in flux. Places have not vanished, yet, but in their transformation, they are not the same; people, behaviours, attitudes, interests and ideals alike follow the very same eternal rule of continuous movement from one phase to another; either organically so or by the process of metamorphosis from one state to another.
Nothing Vanishes, Everything Transforms takes place at the magnificent Manial Palace, a historical gem and an open museum that hosts a multitude of treasures from Egypt’s early twentiethcentury renaissance. Built by Prince Mohamed Ali Tewfik, a painter, traveller and collector, the palace showcases a unique collection of Persian, Ottoman, neo-Mamluk and rococo artefacts and architectural details. The prince spent fortunes to preserve endangered heritage, purchasing inimitable pieces such as exquisite NOTHING VANISHES, EVERYTHING TRANSFORMS
wood and mother-of-pearl inlaid ceilings and Mamluk-era doors from the fallen palaces of Greater Syria. The palace floors are covered with priceless oriental carpets forming one of the world’s most important collections after that of the Victoria & Albert Museum in London. The walls are adorned with sermas (silk embroideries) and portraits of Egyptian royals, some of which were painted by court favourite, the Turkish artist Hedayat. The palace landscaping, known as ‘the garden of a thousand delights’, owes its diversity to the prince’s travels to exotic destinations and boasts Banyan trees of 400-500 years old. This exhibition places contemporary and historical works in this exceptional setting, engulfing the viewer in a visual experience that transcends the linear passage of time. The palace today is a frozen artefact amidst a tumult of urbanization that threatens to engulf it, invoking questions about urban reality and our place within it. Artists have the freedom to express, communicate, confront, question or narrate this transformation and transcendence, which we carry from our past through the present and into the future. The contemporary pieces juxtaposed with the exquisite glass lamps and intricate woodwork of the setting reflect how the artists drew inspiration, each in their own way, from the palace halls. The artworks melt into their surroundings and transform past souls and notions, resonating with the issues of the present and the ideas of the future.
Prince Mohamed Ali Tewfik The Manial Palace Collection
As both an artist and a patron of art and culture, Prince Mohamed Ali envisioned Cairo as a vibrant cynosure of world civilization and heritage. Nothing Vanishes, Everything Transforms pays homage to Cairo’s tumultuous past and evokes the splendour and moods of the city; the great metropolis that was—and continues to be— celebrated for its warmth and vitality. It is the power of this urban, contemporary city, haunted by nostalgia for a time when it was the centre of the modern world, that moves artists, feeding their creativity and celebrating intercultural and intergenerational visual art practices. ART D’ÉGYPTE
NOTHING VANISHES, EVERYTHING TRANSFORMS
Rose Issa Curator, writer and publisher
A Cultural Transformer Art D’Égypte makes things happen. Artists contribute, collectors gather, and people discover a new way of seeing and living art, combining history, culture, commerce and activism in one exciting curatorial event. Led by the talented and energetic Nadine Abdel Ghaffar, Art D’Égypte has managed to put both Cairo and Egypt on the cultural map with some refreshingly innovative ideas and a uniquely original take on art and culture.
The throne room Image courtesy of Abdallah Dawestashy
Abdel Ghaffar’s first exhibition, Eternal Light: Something Old, Something New, held at the Egyptian Museum in Tahrir Square in 2017, became the cultural event of that year. Her ability to gracefully mix old and new and her initiative to create a dialogue between eras, architectures and contemporary commissions, reminded me of the wonderful series of exhibitions that were the highlight of the last six Venice Biennales in Palazzo Fortuny, curated and conceived by the Belgium decorator, designer and taste maker Axel Vervoordt. For what can be more modern than Pharaonic sculptures, millennium-
NOTHING VANISHES, EVERYTHING TRANSFORMS
old objects, furniture and décor displayed alongside modernities at the Egyptian Museum? Combining old and new, finding modernity in antiquity and shining a spotlight on the traditions of the future in venues unused to such initiatives, Art d’Égypte highlighted how Egyptian art history inspired the best of early twentieth-century art in Europe, Hollywood and the world. Now in 2018, Art d’Égypte is embracing and reviving the historic Manial Palace. Built by Prince Mohamed Ali Tewfik (1875-1955), the cousin of King Farouk, the palace reflects the settings and lifestyle of the Egyptian royal family in the late nineteenth and early twentieth centuries. By bringing new and fresh blood into the Egyptian cultural scene, Nothing Vanishes, Everything Transforms, involving 28 Egyptian contemporary artists, reminds me of another key exhibition, this time in Munich, curated by Chris Dercon at the Haus der Kunst in 2011: The Future of Tradition—The Tradition of Future, which also put in relation old and new art from the Islamic world. Egypt’s historic and cultural heritage transformed Cairo into one of ART D’ÉGYPTE
the most coveted, eclectic and important cultural centres of the Arab world. Its history inspired films—both fictive and documentary— decors, architecture, costumes, jewellery, and so much more in a trend that continues to flourish worldwide even today. Divas like Umm Kulthum, Asmahan, Mohamed Abdel Wahab or Omar Sharif still capture world imagination. From the great sculptor Adam Henein, who today has built his own private museum in Cairo, and Chant Avedissian, the hermit with over 220 ‘Icons of the Nile’, to artists such as Ghada Amer, Ahmed Askalany, Mohamad Abla and Khaled Hafez, just to cite a few, they all get their inspiration from local histories. Even those not included in this current exhibition have made links between ancient Egypt and contemporary works in exhibitions such as Fathi Hassan’s Faces and Voices at the John Ryland Library in Manchester (2012). 12
Not unlike the Artangel team in London, who have produced extraordinary art in unexpected places across the UK and around the world, Abdel Ghaffar and her team showcase modern and contemporary artists within unusual settings: a museum, a palace, or even King Farouk’s former residence in the British capital, which has become the Egyptian Cultural Centre London. These events create a wonderful dialogue between art and life, old and new, ideas and realisation, reminding us of the many layers of history. Gathered at these extraordinary temporary sites, the selected Egyptian artists represent a wide variety of styles and backgrounds. Some live in Egypt , others abroad. They are at different stages in their careers— established, mid-career or emerging—and their work varies from site-specific video art and installation to photography, sculpture and painting in unusual displays. Assembling artists, cultural activists, the media and consummate art patrons is not an easy task, but in spite of this, Art d’Égypte strives to make its exhibitions as accessible as possible to the wider public. This year the exhibition will run for a month to allow as many people as possible to visit. The lectures, in particular, are structured to provide the students and graduates of local visual arts
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universities with the chance to benefit from international expertise in a variety of fields. Many museums in the last decade have been reviving their collections by putting them next to contemporary works, from the British Museum in London, to the Jameel Prize at the Victoria and Albert Museum and the Taswir exhibition at Martin-Gropius-Bau Museum in Berlin. And the trend is growing: museums are becoming livelier and attracting a public that had always felt intimidated by their old-fashioned, academic displays. I see these initiatives as generous actions by artists and curators towards their beloved country. I am sure that Art d’Égypte, with the dynamic Nadine Abdel Ghaffar at the helm, is going to create many more such special exhibitions. The city needs some positive input; it needs to become invigorated and exciting again, to boom socially and artistically, bringing together people from all around Egypt, the Arab region and—as in the past—the whole world. Who dares wins.
Rose Issa London, July 2018
Adam Henein is one of the most prominent Egyptian sculptors of our time. Born in Cairo in 1929, Henein graduated from the sculpture department of Helwan University in 1953. He received a two-year grant to study at the Luxor Atelier, established a decade earlier by prominent Egyptian artist and diplomat Mohamed Naghi to promote ancient Egyptian art education in school curricula. This experience deeply impacted the life and art of Henein and he received the Luxor prize in 1954 and 1956. In 1958, he received a diploma in advanced practices from the Munich Academy in Germany. In 1971, Henein moved to Paris and for two decades, he explored painting, continuing to focus on ancient Egyptian themes and traditional materials. From 1989 to 1998, Henein headed the design team involved in restoring the Great Sphinx of Giza, which encouraged him to move back to Egypt in 1996. That same year, he founded the annual International Sculpture Symposium in Aswan. Henein was awarded Egyptâ€™s State Medal, the State Merit Award, as well as the Mubarak Award for the Arts. His work has been exhibited at the Institut du Monde Arabe (Paris), the Metropolitan Museum of Art (New York), the Mathaf: Arab Museum of Modern Art (Doha), the ASB Gallery (Munich), as well as in London and Rome. His work is included in public collections at the Institut du Monde Arabe, the Museum of Egyptian Modern Art in Cairo, the Mathaf and the Barjeel Art Foundation, (Sharjah). A large collection of his work can be seen in his private museum in the Harraniya district of Cairo. Portrait courtesy of Nabil Bourtos.
Through the ages, music has played a major role in the history and development of humanity. Passion for music and art transcends generations and cultures. Prince Mohamed Ali Tewfik loved music and art. Despite his rigidity and haughtiness, he was keen to make music a part of his daily life. In the early 1950s, Umm Kulthum became a legendary singer and a living testimony that it is possible for people of different backgrounds to come together in their appreciation of the kind of beauty that takes you to the boundaries of the imagination. Years have passed, and Umm Kulthum has remained an Egyptian and global icon. New genres of music have appeared and disappeared, but Umm Kulthum endures. Just like the Manial Palace, everything changes but the important efforts and deeds of Prince Mohamed Ali remain. He has left a timeless legacy. In our lives, things neither change nor vanish.
NOTHING VANISHES, EVERYTHING TRANSFORMS
Adam Henein Umm Kulthum, 2003 Bronze 38 x 53 x 160 cm Image courtesy of MO4 Network ART D’ÉGYPTE
Born in 1978 in Nag Hammadi, Upper Egypt, Ahmed Askalany currently lives and works in Cairo. He has taken part in several international exhibitions in Egypt, France, Italy, and the Netherlands. His work was displayed at the 4th Rome and Mediterranean Countries Biennale, Sarajevo, Bosnia in 2011, and he also represented Egypt at the 2009 Venice Biennale. Askalany’s work shows an explicit connection with traditional materials and craft methods associated with the ancient cultures of Egypt. Human figures and animals inspired by his native town make up an impressive mini-show of small sculptures which convey a sense of familiarity and invite the public to interact with them. Small size hippos, represented with anthropomorphic features, typifying virtues and vices of the contemporary reality, recall at times the primitive and the ancestral, at others the materiality of the nature of his homeland. Fat human figures with tiny heads are represented in their exaggerated volume with a playful, humorous streak and can represent, depending on the viewer’s interpretation, a form of social criticism or nostalgia for feelings of the past that have now been lost. Portrait courtesy of the artist.
Throughout his career as a sculptor, Ahmed Askalany has experimented with different materials, valuing poor and fragile ones, such as terracotta and palm leaves, and recovering discarded and abandoned ones, such as tyres. Characteristic of his works are the aesthetic forms that place an emphasis on both structure and volume, as well as an innocent sense of isolation that reflects frankness, candour and a poetic sensitivity.
Ahmed Askalany The Prayers, 2018 Palm leaves 230 × 110 × 80 cm each (2 pieces) Photo: Abdallah Dawestashy
Askalany’s palm leaf sculptures are produced with simple techniques, similar to hair weaving, using natural-coloured palm leaves. By doing so, his work challenges the very boundaries associated with the notion of what is perceived as arts and crafts and manages to respond and contribute to the complexity of contemporary artistic practice.
NOTHING VANISHES, EVERYTHING TRANSFORMS
Ahmed Askalany Stillness, 2018 Palm leaves 170 × 125 × 60 cm each (6 pieces) Photos: Abdallah Dawestashy ART D’ÉGYPTE
Ahmed Badry completed a BA in art education at Helwan University, Cairo in 2003. Recently, he spent a year in Beirut completing Ashkal Alwan’s Homeworkspace Programme 2016-2017. Badry’s subjects are often very small but visible in local everyday routines and are simultaneously of great functional importance. He examines the effects of the noncodified objects on language, collapsing the two poles of metaphor and metonymy. Through a process of re-presentation using projection, writing, drawing and 3D printing, the objects lose their ability to be named. The tangled object invokes a disruption in communication or possibly access to new neologisms. Badry currently lives and works in Cairo. Portrait courtesy of the artist.
Ahmed Badry’s body of sculptures and drawings act as a proposition for objects that strive to recover usefulness. The objects, in their current state, only function as tokens for speculation on alternative narratives of production, parallel to and immersed in a neoliberal global economy. Badry’s series, The Provisionary That Lasts, is an accumulation of five years of research and observation. The artist makes use of impractical scales and non-durable materials to rebuild bodies of everyday instruments. Using either found images as models or his own designs, he combines the assumed functions of some and erases those of others, in reference to a culture of improvised troubleshooting. The objects act as monuments of thrift, leading to a pattern of language that could exist outside of the prevailing economic conditions.
NOTHING VANISHES, EVERYTHING TRANSFORMS
Ahmed Badry The Provisionary That Lasts (series) #7, 2018 Cardboard object and plastic tube 260 x 240 x 35 cm Image courtesy of MO4 Network ART D’ÉGYPTE
Ahmed Farid is an Egyptian painter (b.1950) who trained privately in immersion apprenticeships in the studios of established artists. After an early career in marketing, communications and business, Farid’s encounter with painting came through extensive travels in the early seventies, an era that he fully experienced with its European post-May 1968 culture; its American ‘summer of love’ and the repercussions of Woodstock; and above all, its local Egyptian political and social effervescence. Farid has established himself as one of the foremost names on the Egyptian art scene. Four of his paintings were acquired by Luxury Living, a subsidiary of conglomerate LVMH’s Fendi Casa in Miami, Florida. He was also named a visiting professor in the Academia D’Arte (ADA) in Florence, Italy. Additionally, he has had his pieces auctioned off in the annual Chain of Hope Gala in London, England. In Egypt, his painting Melody of Chaos was acquired for permanent display by the Museum of Egyptian Modern Art. Farid has also enjoyed exceptional success with the leading auction house Christie’s, where his paintings sold for triple their regular price, a testament to his growing international reputation and appreciation.
In his paintings, we perceive echoes and reminiscences of artists such as Gazebia Sirry and Nicholas de Steal in a search of the pictorial practice based on colour and on balancing of portions of different colour levels. This wonderful mix of American painting with Egyptian references makes the artistic creations of Farid unique on the contemporary scene: not a result of an artistic season opened decades ago, but rather an update, in a purely personal version, of a language that bases its peculiarities on the experience of an artist able through his art to bring together the world of the West with the East. Farid currently lives and works in Cairo, Egypt. Portrait courtesy of the artist.
The paintings of Ahmed Farid impress on the observer a sense of sublime contemplation, an invitation to venture into the disturbing meanders of one’s own unconscious. Using grounds of variably even colour, the artist concentrates on fragmentary brushstrokes and material residues that emerge as symbolic hostages in the precarious tangle of the magmatic colourings. This sort of stylistic metaphor yields canvases loaded with thick, at times almost creamy paint, where the crowding of signs, shapes and colours tends to entrap figures and portions of humanity, imbuing them with an archaic flavour. In these works, the observer can perceive a sense of assemblage, of structural overlap that refers to our increasingly crowded and even more alienating contemporary cities. Ahmed Farid does not describe a detailed urban landscape but calls it to mind through superimpositions of colour backgrounds, slightly hinted buildings and human figures struggling to emerge from the bottom of the canvas. The identifying image is concealed and then proposed to the gaze, evading winking impositions to knit up a sort of metaphysical intimacy with what surrounds it and with the observer. NOTHING VANISHES, EVERYTHING TRANSFORMS
Clockwise from top left: Ahmed Farid The Urban Chaos Oil and gold leaf on canvas on board 150 x 300 cm Ahmed Farid The Royal Slumps Oil and gold leaf on canvas on board 170 x 300 cm Ahmed Farid The Prince’s Neighbourhood Oil and gold leaf on canvas on board 170 x 300 cm Ahmed Farid The Urban Invasion Oil and gold leaf on canvas on board 200 x 200 cm
Images courtesy of the artist and Safarkhan Gallery ART D’ÉGYPTE
After graduating from the Faculty of Fine Arts in 1994, Ahmed Karaly participated in the annual Youth Salon exhibition organized by the Ministry of Culture, where he received numerous awards. His first solo exhibition took place at the Mashrabia Gallery of Contemporary Art in 2002. He subsequently participated in the International Sculpture Symposium in Aswan, which was the first of many international symposiums for stone sculpture around the world. In 2005, he received the State Award for creativity and travelled to Italy, where he presented his project al-Masrkhankiyeh, a reconstruction of Islamic architecture in sculptural form, creating a vision for an entire city starting with its gates. The project was presented at the Egyptian Academy of Fine Arts in Rome in 2006 and at the Gezira Centre for the Arts in Cairo in 2008. Karaly is currently working on completing this sculptural city. Portrait courtesy of the artist.
The work entitled The Spirit of the City is part of a larger project called al-Masrkhankiyeh, an attempt to develop an artistic vision for a new city based on Islamic architecture and heritage from a practical and constructive perspective. The Spirit of the City imagines what the city would look like, what kind of buildings it would include, essentially, what its spirit would be. Through the interplay of light and silk, the observerâ€™s eyes wander through the light and the shadows of a city complete with windows, pillars, streets and arches, but ephemeral and just barely touchable.
NOTHING VANISHES, EVERYTHING TRANSFORMS
Ahmed Karaly The Spirit of the City, 2014 Light and silk installation 2.5 x 3 x 10 m Photo: Abdallah Dawestashy ART D’ÉGYPTE
Alyâa Kamel is an Egyptian artist based in Geneva, Switzerland.. After receiving her bachelor’s degree, she continued her studies at the renowned Central Saint Martins College of Art and Design in London and at the Geneva School of Theatre Sets. She also interned at different artists’ studios to refine her technique. Her artwork ranges from very small sizes to large panels on both paper and canvas, using acrylics, oil and other media. Her drawings are ink watercolours and wool. Her work is a pure reflection on humanity, whether as individual men and women or crowds, and the constant evolution of our identity in this world led by our thoughts. She contemplates the existential questioning of who we are and what we believe in, what we want or desire. Kamel has been also working as an illustrator for brands, magazines, institutions and humanitarian associations. She has also created an amusing cartoon alter ego called ‘Little Alyâa’, and regularly shares everyday heartaches and comical incidents. She always travels with her paints and brushes to be able to illustrate whenever inspiration strikes. Portrait courtesy of the artist.
‘They are here and there! It is like hanging laundry in the bathroom, the veils, surrounded by the white ceramic in the Manial Palace. I hang in the air memories from the past. Bathrooms are always good places to meditate, to cleanse oneself, to refresh during hot weather or to warm up in the cold. Leaving behind, here, what is most precious as a memory. A trace left in the air of ourselves. I would like to stretch strings, hang veils, and on each one of them, draw a golden shadow , a human shape left on the canvas, like a memory, the Palace of Memories. A palace filled in with ghosts, people from another time. In this bathroom, a surprise for the viewer, the discovery of shadows from the past in their own present. A visit in time, past, present and future, in the same space in the now.’ NOTHING VANISHES, EVERYTHING TRANSFORMS
Alyâa Kamel They Are Here and There, 2018 Installation, wooden frames and acrylic paint on canvas Three screens, four panels each 180 x 60 cm (each screen) Image courtesy of the artist ART D’ÉGYPTE
DIAA EL DIN DAOUD
Diaa El Din Daoud is an Egyptian artist born in Damietta in 1968. In 1994, He graduated from the Faculty of Applied Arts, Ceramics Design Department, and became an assistant professor. Since 1994, he has been involved in the Egyptian art movement and has participated in national and international exhibitions and competitions. His ceramics work focuses on spatial concepts, where he uses other materials in addition to ceramics in creating art in specific spaces according to the particular theme. Much of his work expresses itself through conceptual approaches. Portrait courtesy of the artist.
Diaa El Din Daoud Spiritual Cone, 2018 Ceramics installation 150 x 100 x 60 cm Image courtesy of the artist
The Spiritual Cone is a study of cones in nature, architecture and form and how they relate to Islamic art through the search for inner beauty. The artistic vision of the cone differs according to its position—vertical, horizontal or oblique—and also depending on the colour and whether it is glossy or matte. Each position gives different meanings to the cone shape and affects the observer’s perception when moving through the work, although, in essence, it remains the same shape. In people’s beliefs, the dome of a grave indicates the person’s goodness. The presence of a dome allows the dreams of the spirit to fly up to the sky like a bird.
NOTHING VANISHES, EVERYTHING TRANSFORMS
Diaa El Din Daoud Spiritual Cone, 2018 Ceramics installation 150 x 100 x 60 cm Photo: Abdallah Dawestashy ART D’ÉGYPTE
Esmat Dawestashy is an artist who has often changed his style. His early work manipulated abstract forms with collage from past photographic work. His paintings presented somewhat irrational but symbolic arrays of strongly coloured coils and bundles. Dawestashy then turned to Sufi mysticism and later started creating three dimensional forms using discarded items to caustically comment on societal issues. Dawestashy was born in 1943. Having graduated from the department of sculpture from the Faculty of Fine Arts at Alexandria University in 1967, he established the Gamaet Eltahawuul (Transformation Group) two years later. The artist also served as an exhibition supervisor for the Ministry of Culture at the Mahmoud Saïd Museum in Alexandria. In 1993, he was appointed director of the Museum of Fine Arts in Alexandria and supervised the organization of the 18th Alexandria Biennale for Mediterranean Countries. Dawestashy has numerous publications including the Plastic Art Magazine, a series of books entitled Catalogue 67 and a commemorative book entitled ‘Alam Dawestashy (Dawestashy’s World), to mark his 50th birthday. He has also supervised the publication of two volumes, Aklam al-Sahwa (Pens of Consciousness) and al-Insan wa-l-Tatawwur (Man and Development). Other endeavours include short stories, poetry, scriptwriting and art criticism. Dawestashy has also executed a series of films, using both exposed and unexposed colour films to which lines, colours and scratches were added. Since the 1960s, he has participated in several group exhibitions and has held more than 150 private showing. In 1996, the Ministry of Culture awarded him the State Fellowship for Creative Artists. Portrait courtesy of the artist.
Prince Mohamed Ali Tewfik was inspired by the expansion of world trade during his era, facilitating his collection of artefacts from around the globe. Trilogy of Globalization reflects that mood:
Reproduction is composed of a very old typewriter, reproducing humans in their various stages of formation (eternally procreating until nothingness). Communication is a computer monitor with a very old book on top of it, a blackboard with chalks and computer disks (we learn ... from cave scribbles to digital revolution ... but we never learn). Globalization Press is an old printing press, painted with the colours of the US flag. Over it, moulds for human shoes go up towards the guillotine (press), to surrender to the new globalization and be transformed (world destruction, human collapse, and the New Dawn). In the final analysis, Trilogy of Globalization complements the Manial Palace and is an extension of its philosophy. It aims to catch the present and to become a monument to the past in our mysterious future. An idea that combines a lover of heritage and a creative lover of art, in the hope that our contemporary culture will acquire a positive and constructive spirit, leading to improved conditions and a reconciliation with history and enlightenment, love and giving. NOTHING VANISHES, EVERYTHING TRANSFORMS
Esmat Dawestashy Trilogy of Globalization, 2005 Mixed media installation 150 x 150 x 60 cm Photos: Abdallah Dawestashy ART D’ÉGYPTE
FARIDA EL GAZZAR
Farida El Gazzar is an Egyptian-Greek artist born in Alexandria, Egypt in 1975, and now based in Athens, Greece. During her early years, she lived in Kuwait before relocating to Athens with her family. El Gazzar later moved to London for five years where she completed her studies, attending Kingston University and the Royal College of Art. Between 2003 and 2007, she was co-founder of the creative team WARDA. She has collaborated with publications and editorials, producing illustrations for Cornell University Press, Martis Books, TimeOut Athens, the Greek Ministry of Environment, Athens2004 Olympics and the London National Theatre, amongst other clients. She has given seminars through workshops and teaches art classes at international institutions in Athens. El Gazzar participated in art residency programmes at The Townhouse Gallery in Cairo and at al-Riwaq Gallery in Bahrain. Her works have been exhibited internationally and are part of institutional collections such as the Barjeel Art Foundation and major private collections in Europe, the USA and the MENA. Since 2011, El Gazzar has been represented by Kalfayan Galleries (Athens-Thessaloniki). Portrait courtesy of the artist.
‘As an artist, I have an ongoing interest and urge to explore and highlight the many layers of Egypt and its society. I focus on its day-to-day rituals, capturing moments, places, and objects passed almost unnoticed and ignored. I find great inspiration in the infrastructure of the city and particularly its architectural development and how that reflects on the current socio-political situation that people experience today. The economic boom and the strong demand for real estate developments is rapidly changing the landscape of Egypt.’
Farida El Gazzar Evening Palms, 2018 Acrylic on paper 26 x 36 cm Farida El Gazzar Untitled 6, 2011 Acrylic on paper 24.5 x 32.5 cm ©Kalfayan Galleries (Athens-Thessaloniki) NOTHING VANISHES, EVERYTHING TRANSFORMS
Clockwise from top left: Farida El Gazzar Blue City, 2017 Acrylic on plywood 44 x 32 cm
Farida El Gazzar Opportunity, 2017 Acrylic on plywood 32 x 44 cm Farida El Gazzar Ashwa’iyat I, 2012 Acrylic on plywood 29 x 21 cm Farida El Gazzar Ashwa’iyat II, 2012 Acrylic on plywood 29 x 21 cm Farida El Gazzar Windows of Babel, 2017 Acrylic on plywood 32 x 44 cm ©Kalfayan Galleries (Athens-Thessaloniki) ART D’ÉGYPTE
Ghada Amer was born in Cairo in 1963. In 1974, her parents relocated to France, where she began her artistic training ten years later at Villa Arson in Nice, France. She currently lives and works between New York and Paris and has exhibited at the Venice Biennale, the Sydney Biennale, the Whitney Biennale, and the Brooklyn Museum, among others. ‘I believe that all women should like their bodies and use them as tools of seduction’, Amer has stated; and in her well-known erotic embroideries, she at once rejects oppressive laws set in place to govern women’s attitudes toward their bodies and repudiates first-wave feminist theory that the body must be denied to prevent victimization. By depicting explicit sexual acts with the delicacy of needle and thread, their significance assumes a tenderness that simple objectification ignores. Amer continuously allows herself to explore the dichotomies of an uneasy world and confronts the language of hostility and finality with unsettled narratives of longing and love. Her work addresses first and foremost the ambiguous and transitory nature of the paradox that arises when searching for concrete definitions of East and West, feminine and masculine, art and craft. Through her paintings, sculptures and public garden projects, Amer takes traditional notions of cultural identity, abstraction, and religious fundamentalism and turns them on their heads. Portrait courtesy of Scott Seifert.
‘In The Words I Love the Most (2012), the words that had constituted the painting definitively leave the planarity and pictorial to become sculpting materials. As posited by Ghada Amer, in this sculpture made of words, the true reader could only exist on the inside. Viewed from the outside, and even more for the person who doesn’t read Arabic, one can only see arabesques. The patterns hold something that is only visible from the inside. The sculpture closes in on itself while opening onto another space. This principle is reminiscent of mashrabia, an Islamic architectural element that allows (the woman) to hide and to see without being seen. Transparency is only apparent, and the secret (the feminine), in the backdrop, is safe. [….] This sphere of words on an inclined axis, like the dancing dervishes that Ghada Amer says to have dreamt about during her work, refers quite clearly to the earth, which consequently brings to mind, by its perfect form and its sibylline message, a dialogue with the universe, with the divine.’
Creissels, A., ‘Between Bodies and Words: Gaze Traps and Resistance Spaces’, Ghada Amer: Rainbow Girls, New York, Cheim & Read, 2014.
NOTHING VANISHES, EVERYTHING TRANSFORMS
Ghada Amer The Words I Love the Most, 2012 Bronze with black patina 144.8 x 147.3 x 147.3 cm Edition of 6, 1/2 AP Image courtesy of MO4 Network ART D’ÉGYPTE
HAZEM EL MESTIKAWY
Hazem El Mestikawy is a Swiss-Egyptian artist, born in Egypt in 1965. He received his BA in art education from Minya University and worked in Egypt until he was awarded an artist residency in Switzerland in 1994. Since then, he has been travelling and showing his works in Europe and all over the world. Between 1998 and 2014, he split his time between Switzerland and Austria before finally moving back to Egypt. He currently lives and works between Cairo and Alexandria. He has participated in numerous group and solo shows since 1989 in countries including Egypt, Switzerland, Austria, Germany, Japan, Qatar and the UAE. Portrait courtesy of the artist.
The practice of Hazem El Mestikawy swarms around the realms of architecture, design, sculpture, and visual trickery. Trained initially in the traditional mediums of sculpture, he plays with light and shade, with volume and its surrounding space while tackling the sculptural form, skilfully probing the opposing forces of the geometrical and the organic. In his sculptural masses, El Mestikawy does not stop with elements that satisfy regular sculptors; he pushes the boundaries of the discipline to create site-specific installations, to make it difficult even for the specialist to identify the works: they are sculptures, installations, and definitely inspired and influenced by architecture. On the concept level, El Mestikawyâ€™s practice can be described as having ingeniously assimilated both ancient Egyptian and Islamic art and architecture, as well as contemporary minimal art philosophies. The intriguing aspect of his practice is his insistence on working with cardboard and other paper-based materials. Every element of his installations, from initial sketches to the box they are carried away in to the exhibition space, is made by the artist himself.
NOTHING VANISHES, EVERYTHING TRANSFORMS
Hazem El Mestikawy I Am the Other, 2014 Cardboard, recycled paper and glue 18 x 105 x 105 cm Image courtesy of the artist Hazem El Mestikawy Level staff, 2010 Cardboard, white paper, grey paper, yellow paper and glue 7 units, connected 3 m x 10 x 256 cm Photo: Abdallah Dawestashy ART Dâ€™Ă‰GYPTE
Huda Lutfi works like an urban archaeologist, digging up found objects and images as loaded fragments of history. She then re-packages them using bricolage as an interceptive strategy. Recognizable objects, images and icons are re-contextualized and made to tell a different story, playing on collective memory and shared iconography, Lutfi blurs historical timelines and cultural boundaries in her work. Multi-layered and playful, Lutfi is known to work with a wide range of media, painting, collage, installations, assemblages, and more recently with photomontage and video. Her focus has been on the historical representations of the feminine body, and how it translates into the everyday. Working with the form of dolls in their various contexts, Lutfi explores the multiple roles of women within visual culture: as active producers of it and depicted symbols within it.
Lutfi’s work introduces new technique and conceptual departures, where she cleverly underpins socio-cultural forces defining masculine identity and exposes notions of restriction previously explored in her works on the feminine body. Trained as a cultural historian and, with her second career as an artist, Lutfi emerged as one of Egypt’s contemporary imagemakers. She received her doctorate in Islamic Culture and History from McGill University, Montreal, Canada (1983), and taught at the American University in Cairo until 2010. Drawing upon the historical, cultural and local experiences of Egyptian society, Lutfi began exhibiting her artwork in the mid-1990s. She has exhibited locally and internationally in both international galleries and in museums in cities including Alexandria, Cairo, Paris, Marseille, London, The Hague, Frankfurt, Thessaloniki, Virginia, Texas, Ohio, Dakar, Bamako, Tunisia, Bahrain and Dubai. Lutfi currently lives and works in Cairo. Portrait courtesy of the artist.
Centred around the idea of how the body is always regulated by our society’s cultural traditions and norms, Waiting for Admission makes use of only female shoe moulds in an attempt to reveal and question such regulations. This site-specific work is composed of a group of 60 dusty and neglected moulds quietly stand outside the door of the palace mosque as if waiting for admission.
Detritus has its own neglected beauty, an improvised spontaneity inspired by the practicality of a situation. Made up of old, dusty mattresses, broken wooden benches and old newspapers, this installation appeared in situ in one of the vast rooms of the palace gallery; the outcome of the cleaners’ tidying-up work, stacking the neglected objects in preparation for hiding them away in storage. Through use of special lighting, this assembled installation finds a new life as an artistic expression, and a self-commentary on ‘the state of things’ in one of Cairo’s celebrated historical sites. NOTHING VANISHES, EVERYTHING TRANSFORMS
Huda Lutfi Detritus, 2018 Assembled installation, mattresses, wooden benches, old newspapers Total dimensions vary Huda Lutfi Waiting for Admission, 2018 Installation, 60 wooden shoe moulds Total dimensions vary Photos: Abdallah Dawestashy ART Dâ€™Ă‰GYPTE
Islam Shabana is a multidisciplinary artist and a digital media designer based in Cairo. Shabana’s practice is an open study of the digital as a transcendental medium. His research relates the digital image to the mental image, programming languages (coding) to magic diagrams, and digital processes to alchemy. Shabana’s work oscillates between different mediums, but lately he is focused on audio-visual (A/V) performances. His work has been featured in several group exhibitions and festivals in Egypt and Germany, including Berlin Art Week, and Cairotronica: the Cairo Electronic and New Media Arts Symposium. In 2017, his A/V collaboration project, C31S39, was featured on Boiler Room as part of MASAFAT festival in Cairo. The ∆3 performance was chosen by VIRTUALLYREALITY festival in Manchester and shown in the Royal Northern College of Music (RNCM). He was also part of MusicMakers Hacklab, where he worked on a collaborative A/V performance using machine learning technologies and was live performed at CTM Festival 2018 in the HAU theatre, Berlin. Portrait courtesy of the artist.
This digital projection mapping piece is a medium-specific experiment in moving time. The broken clock at the top of the Manial Palace tower presents many unanswered questions. There is a dearth of historical references about it, contributing to its forgotten mystery. The available references mention the initial function of the tower as a military watchtower and a primitive signal transmitter. Prince Mohamed Ali added the clock later on, changing the tower’s original purpose, but we have no idea why the design involves serpent-shaped clock hands. There was no documentation of when exactly the clock stopped, or if it was ever working in the first place.
Unfreeze Time creates a viewer experience that avoids delving into historiographic narratives or an elusive celebration of the aesthetic presence of the clock tower. Instead, this piece will digitally unfreeze time, opening possibilities of dialectical narratives to answer old questions or ask more important ones about the present.
NOTHING VANISHES, EVERYTHING TRANSFORMS
Islam Shabana Unfreeze Time, 2018 20 x 10 m Image courtesy of MO4 Network ART D’ÉGYPTE
Khaled Hafez is a Cairo-based visual artist. His practice encompasses painting, installation, photography, video and experimental film. Born in Cairo in 1963, Hafez studied medicine and attended the evening classes of the School of Fine Arts in the 1980s. Shortly after obtaining his MSc in medicine in 1992, he gave up his medical practice in favour of a career in the arts. He later obtained his MFA in new media and digital arts from New York’s Transart Institute and the Danube University in Krems, Austria. His work has been shown at many international biennales, including Venice, Mardin, Moscow, Rio De Janeiro, Caracas, Houston, Havana, Bamako, Cairo, Dakar, and Sharjah, as well as numerous museums including the Uppsala Museum of Art, Sweden; Rijksmuseum Volkenkunde, Leiden; the Tate Modern, London; Kunstmuseum Bonn; the New Museum NY; and the Centre George Pompidou, Paris. Hafez is a Fulbright Fellow (2005) and a Rockefeller Fellow (2009). In 2011, he was nominated and shortlisted for the Sovereign African Art Prize, and in 2012, he was nominated for the Prix Pictet, a global award in photography and sustainability. Hafez was the prize winner at the Dak’Art Biennale in Senegal in 2004 and the Bamako Photo Biennale in Mali in 2011. Portrait courtesy of the artist.
The Illustrated Bronze History of Time builds on the idea that ‘history’ is a concept very much written in a variety of ways, at different times, and is in itself a simulation of reality. ‘History’ as a construct composed of facts, incidents, people who have interacted in particular ways at a specific frozen moment in time: a moment that is documented by ‘someone’, hence always liable to revision. Taking the seminal text—and hypothesis—of the Bosnian artist Braco Dimitrijević’s Tractatus Post Historicus as a starting point for the project, postulating that history is neither written by the vanquisher nor by the defeated, rather by those who lived it. The work is composed of a series of family photographs, with protagonists who have played different roles in their own political and social histories, in a particular space. That space is Egypt at a particular moment in time during the years of the monarchy, between 1919 and the present day, recounting along the way the story of a separatist kingdom within the Egyptian state, one that managed to declare independence for 100 days: the North Delta Kingdom. Particular objects—some belongings of those protagonists—are cast in bronze, to commemorate the memories of the late protagonists through their property. The installation is conceived to take place in the royal Throne Room of the Manial Palace, a space that was significant at a particular moment in the history of the monarchy, the same exact moment where the protagonists of The Illustrated Bronze History of Time were each acting their part in the social web of the Egyptian monarchy. The Throne Room—with the painted portraits of the Egyptian viceroys, khedives and kings alongside their stories—plays an integral part in the narrative of the installation. Portraits of the installation protagonists, the personal stories and the bronze sculptural elements are inserted inside the Throne Room alongside the portraits and stories of the royals, to ‘complete’ the story of what happened inside and outside the palace, at that very same moment in time. The viewer is able to read through the entirety of the Throne Room a fusion of histories constructed around the royals who operated only during the monarchy, and the protagonists who were able to bridge the worlds of both monarchy and republic, completing the cultural timeline of Egypt: the continuum of both worlds that failed to blend despite the passage of time. NOTHING VANISHES, EVERYTHING TRANSFORMS
Khaled Hafez The Illustrated Bronze History of Time, 2018 A mixed-element installation comprising archival photography, bronze sculptural elements, text and a video projection. Total dimensions vary Photo: Abdallah Dawestashy Khaled Hafez Hermes Post Codes 1, 2015 Mixed media on canvas 130 x 90 cm Courtesy of the CIB Collection
Hermes Post Codes is a series of mixed media on canvas of various dimensions. The works explore the nature of time, its music, its rhythms, its heroes, its language and its nature that is inseparable from space. The placement of the painting above the piano at the Manial Palace is a homage to a space/place that was created at a moment in time, and continues to exist at another, with different heroes and a different audience.
Magdi Mostafa has been working primarily with site-specific, research-driven installation and performance projects, multimedia installations, and experimental ‘sound-based’ works since 2003. His work has been featured in solo and group exhibitions including New Sensorium at ZKM Centre of Art and Media, Karlsruhe (2016), Echoes and Reverberations at the Hayward Gallery (PS), London (2015), Surface of Spectral Scattering at Townhouse Gallery, Cairo (2014) and Extract of Paradise at Galerie Brigitte Schenk, Cologne 2016. He has also participated in Sharjah Biennale 11 (2013) where he received the Biennale prize; also, Jogja Biennale, Indonesia (2014); Dak’Art Biennale, Senegal (2018); Sound Element at Mathaf: Arab Museum of Modern Art (Project Space), Doha (2013); Sound Cells at Institute des Cultures d’Islam in Paris (2017); Art Dubai projects (2012); and recently Art Abu Dhabi Commotions, the UAE (2017). His residencies include the Bronx Museum, NYC; DAAD, Berlin; Delfina Foundation, London; Citta dell’Arte, Italy; Hangar Multimedia Centre, Barcelona; and Alanica Symposium, Russia. His sound compositions have been featured in several international radio stations including Saout Documenta, the Documenta 13th Radio programme, Kassel (2017). Portrait courtesy of the artist.
During several site visits to the Manial Palace, Magdi Mostafa inferred that there must be a missing room, a hamam or marble steam room for the prince. In fact, the room existed but had been closed to the public during the restoration process. 42
Inspired by the ‘found’ room, Mostafa created a site-specific installation with variable sound and light elements. He uses a set of low, dense sound frequencies with a mix of high-frequency waveforms, scattered around the space in several channels in precise positions. He employs the scale and the materials of the room to direct and reshape these waves, a high-sensitivity audio recording of a hypothetical scenario of some physical transformation processes—water pressure inside different vacuums, steam flow, condensation and the shaking of metal pipes. Oscillating between build-up and decay, this field of selected sounds is structured to bring something back to life, something felt but probably not clearly understood, maybe matching the special energies visitors feel while walking through the palace. Both the technology behind the mechanisms and the industriallike sounds force a sense of coldness and humidness over the marble walls and the architectural elements, that may reflect the artist’s feelings or a sense of the passing of time over a historical spot. Abstract phonemes trigger several light actions that guide the visitor’s attention and movements within the ‘hypothetical scenario’ to experience both time and space in variable aspects and perspectives. NOTHING VANISHES, EVERYTHING TRANSFORMS
Magdi Mostafa Isolation Cycles, 2018 Site specific sound /light installation Courtesy of the artist Photo: Magdi Mostafa - The Manial Palace ART D’ÉGYPTE
Maged Mikhail was born in the Upper Egyptian city of Sohag in 1982. He studied at the Faculty of Fine Arts in Cairo, graduating in 2004 with a major in monumental sculpture. His apprenticeship with renowned artist Adam Henein for nearly six years after graduation was a cornerstone in his artistic development. He then received the Ministry of Culture’s full production sponsorship in the period between 2008 and 2011. During that time, he worked with different materials, sculpting in plaster, bronze, and stone as well as producing ink drawings on paper. Mikhail’s work focuses on ancient civilizations and collective heritage and seeks to understand their connection with everyday contemporary life. This direction began to take shape in his work starting 2013. By 2016, he had developed an approach to Ancient Egyptian art and found his own way of transforming it to abstract and contemporary sculpture. His current influences are two main elements: Architecture (Ancient Egyptian, Coptic, and Islamic), and hieroglyphic symbols. The influence of architecture can be seen in the clean, geometric lines of his compositions, and also in his approach to monumental pieces of public art. The hieroglyphics are integrated into Mikhail’s work as abstracted sculptural interpretations. A sculpture then becomes a word to be both read and viewed as an image. Portrait courtesy of the artist.
In his signature abstract style, Maged Mikhail presents a sculptural work in conversation with itself. Two small bronze pieces, El-Sayed (The Master) and El-Korsy (The Chair), are displayed to face two enlarged plaster replicas.
For Mikhail, the chair and seated position are the essence of the Ancient Egyptian history he heavily draws from. His choice of the seated posture for El-Sayed evokes stability, continuity and time given for observation. To complement it, El-Korsy emphasizes the chair itself as a symbol of power.
Maged Mikhail El-Sayed (The Master), 2017 Bronze, close-up Maged Mikhail El-Korsy (The Chair), 2017 Bronze, close-up Courtesy of the artist and Karim Francis Art Gallery
The bronze pieces represent Egypt’s past or recent history. Inspired by the monarchical flag of Egypt, El-Sayed is partly coloured in green, with an accent of polished bronze where the face would be. El-Korsy is in pure bronze that glistens like gold, evoking a royal throne. The two large works are of the present, with the plaster evoking cement and building material. It is left a plain white as if incomplete, in much the same way Egypt’s present is still being written. There’s a tension between a glorious past and a present still unravelling but loaded with high expectations.
NOTHING VANISHES, EVERYTHING TRANSFORMS
From left to right: Maged Mikhail El-Korsy (The Chair), 2018 Plaster 167 x 58 x 100 cm
Maged Mikhail El-Sayed (The Master), 2017 Bronze 45 x 18 x 26 cm
Maged Mikhail El-Sayed (The Master), 2018 Plaster 167 x 47 x 63 cm
Maged Mikhail El-Korsy (The Chair), 2017 Bronze 46 x 17 x 25 cm
Photo: Abdallah Dawestashy ART D’ÉGYPTE
Maher Dawoud is an Egyptian artist born and raised in Cairo. An artist since childhood, Maher always believed in the power of visual impressions to deliver his ideas. In 2005, he received his BFA from the Mural Painting Department in the Faculty of Fine Arts, Helwan University. It was during his final two years as a student that he began experimenting with different materials, all the while searching for a more interesting surface to touch and feel. At the young age of 26, and after teaching at the Mural Painting Department for a few years, he acquired his MFA from the same university under the thesis title The Artistic Values of the Linear Composition in German Coloured Glass. While continuing to teach and experiment with glass and mosaics, he obtained his PhD in 2013 from the same faculty with the thesis The Employment of Mosaics in Installation Art: Analytical and Comparative Study. Maher was recently nominated to represent Egypt at the 56th International Venice Biennale in May 2015. The project he designed with two other Egyptian colleagues named CAN YOU SEE? was a large mosaic construction of the word ‘PEACE’. During the opening week of the biennale, the Egyptian pavilion was widely popular and successfully attracted many visitors. Portrait courtesy of the artist.
Alongside the River Nile, connecting two great continents, a civilization was born to shine throughout history. Different eras have passed, but the culture of Egypt remains through its people and their heritage. Even before the time of skyscrapers, buildings were a sign of civilization: the Coliseum of Rome, the Pyramids of Giza, and the Taj-Mahal of Agra. A heritage that stood for years, narrating people’s legacy. Nations respected the buildings, and the people who built them. Throughout history, people believed, ‘the greater the buildings, the greater the men who built them’. This is obvious in the nostalgia we feel amidst the beautiful architecture of downtown Cairo. These pieces of art were built by statesmen who had their time of glory. A pasha, a khedive, a sultan, or a king, who had many things in common: power, wealth … and a moustache, a highly respected feature in their days. The installation addresses our feelings for these old buildings and the era of their makers, represented by an old building and a big moustache made of glass, hard to bend, yet so fragile that they could instantly break if overturned. NOTHING VANISHES, EVERYTHING TRANSFORMS
Maher Dawoud Le Pacha, 2018 Installation PLA-Glass 20 x 20 x 20 cm each (2 pieces) Photo: Abdallah Dawestashy ART D’ÉGYPTE
Malak Yacout’s work has explored issues of time, semiotics, structuralism, and epistemology. Currently, she is exploring ontological approaches to languages and objects (or sites) as ‘beings’. How does art relate to sites and what might site-specificity actually mean? Her research-based practices conceptually reflect on ideas of site-specificity in art, of relations between objects and beings, of the inseparability of concepts. Usually formulated as open questions, her work invites speculation in a never-ending cycle of recontextualization and redefinition: There is always something to reconsider. Portrait courtesy of the artist.
‘... In fact, there is a certain temporal aspect to linguistics, which becomes apparent in the rhythm of the individual moras, stops, and stresses in language. This tends to be most clearly demonstrated in traditional readings of the Quran (tilāwah), with all its rules and structures for pronunciation: when vowels are lengthened, when consonants are stressed, when to stop and take a breath, and when to continue without stopping. Ahkam al-tajwid, the science and rules of reciting the Quran, is significant: each and every rule is clearly marked with its own symbol repeatedly. The introduction of these symbols into Arabic writing may or may not have been intended to standardize Quranic recitation—which according to Mitchell’s definition of modernity would suggest a modernizing initiative. Regardless, the effect is that the rhythm and tempo of the Qurān is marked with certain symbols, which suggests not just a specific awareness of time, but also an initiative to attribute a specific temporal meaning to each symbol. In the end, these markers refer to issues of the semiotics of time—hence the name, temporal semiotics. Structurally, these temporal markings in the Quran are repeatedly revealed in the architecture, the Islamic patterns, and the designs of the artefacts of the time. For example, the page from a Mamluk Quran has a certain rhythm, which is then repeated in the patterns and designs of a dome of the Mamluk mosque-madrasa. Moreover, the structure of the Quran exhibits similar uses of repetition and symmetry that are evident in Islamic patterns, design and architecture. The various rules and rhythm of the different pronunciations come into effect when features like qalqala, idgham, ghonna, madd and waqf take place. This depends on interpretations of the Quran and its readings. Is it possible, then, that the Quran and its teachings have their own structural and temporal language of rhythms, that is subconsciously and visually reproduced? Can this be applied to other ideologies and their visual constructions of themselves? Does for example, the rhythm of the Marxist Manifesto of the Communist Party reveal itself in communist architecture in Russia, China, and Latin America? Are there structural parallels between the Bible and the paintings, architecture, and other visual manifestations of the Christian ideology based on its time and rhythm? Does each ideology have its own temporal language that is revealed in its own visual manifestations? Is there a relationship between the oral and the visual in Islamic doctrine and Islamic architecture, designs, calligraphy, and patterns? Can the sounds and rhythms of the recitations be translated into architecture, form, and patterns? In turn, is it possible to translate the resulting architecture, form and patterns into sound?’ NOTHING VANISHES, EVERYTHING TRANSFORMS
Malak Yacout Temporal Semiotics, 2015 Installation 0.8 x 0.65 x 12 m Photo: Abdallah Dawestashy Malak Yacout Temporal Semiotics, 2015 Architectural illustration Courtesy of the artist Malak Yacout Temporal Semiotics, 2015 Detail Courtesy of Cairo Zoom ART Dâ€™Ă‰GYPTE
Born in 1990, Marwan Elgamal is an Egyptian contemporary artist. He received his BA from the American University in Cairo in 2012 and his MFA in painting at the Frank Mohr Institute in Groningen, Netherlands. His interdisciplinary practice spans painting, animation and text with a particular interest in the loss of the familiar through imagined storytelling and alternate remembrance, seeking to explore coherent narratives of identity of the self and society by disrupting these anchor points of recognition. Interested in the drivers of culture and how images, stories and traditions instil identity. He draws from history, mythology, pop culture, archetypes and personal memory and allows for fluid interchangeability between them. Invoking the mysterious, the uncanny and otherworldly, his work depicts realms outside of recognizable locations and times, alternative maps for the viewers to experience novel connections with themselves and the world. The work seeks to place an indefiniteness to events, where change is constant, addressing contradiction and resolution, familiarity and foreignness. His work has been exhibited in Egypt and the Netherlands. Portrait courtesy of the artist.
The work reflects on time, on cultivating and collecting, on the celebration of beauty and imminent ends. A renewal that sees conception, realization and its eventual passing. A jovial resolve and acceptance of continual change. The work contrasts the space of the unique mother-of-pearl room with a visual experience that is fleeting, extending indefinitely into virtual space and in constant transformation. An illustration of the desire to accumulate beautiful things, vivid and pulsing with life, and the interjection of time as it pushes forward and leaves behind faint memories.
In a Timely Fashion explores texture, as an extension of the princeâ€™s desire to house divergent architectural and artisan traditions in the palace complex, and as interaction with the particular space, a room characterized with woodwork and nacre. It illustrates the passage of time, a condition of growth and evolution, where things perish and flourish. Time seems to signify a common themeâ€”a prince dedicated to a decades-long construction project; one waiting patiently to be enthroned, the palace itself an evocation of various epochs, and an audience gathering to interact with contemporary and classical art in one experience. NOTHING VANISHES, EVERYTHING TRANSFORMS
Marwan Elgamal In a Timely Fashion, 2018 Projection Image courtesy of MO4 Network Marwan Elgamal In a Timely Fashion, 2018 Projection stills Images courtesy of the artist ART D’ÉGYPTE
Mohamed Abdelkarim received his master’s degree of knowledge engagement at L’Ecole cantonale d’art du Valais (ECAV), Switzerland. He then turned towards producing textbased performances and became committed to performative practices across multidisciplinary research, concerning the perception of narrating, singing, dancing, detecting and doing. His practice engages with these actions through the focus on travel, locomotion, renegades, history and picaresque literature, where a series of non-linear, serendipitous encounters with concepts, fictions, almost truth and what is known as historical fact, are gathered to form a script and an archive of events and stories. In this context, his practice aims at producing narratives and exposing the way narratives are produced. Among other places, his works have been included in PhotoCairo 5, Contemporary Image Collective, Cairo (2012); Biennale Jogja XII, Yogyakarta, Indonesia (2013); Tokyo Wonder Site, Japan (2012); Sharjah Biennale (2013); ISOE (In Search of Europe) curated by Daniela Swarowsky (2013); and Do it in Arabic by Sharjah Art Foundation and co-curated by Hans Ulrich Obrist (2016). Recently his performances have been included in Guild Master of Cabaret Voltaire, Manifesta11, Zurich; Sofia Underground Performance Art Festival, Bulgaria; and Live Works Performance Act Award Vol.5, 37°EDIZIONE DRODESERA, Italy. Portrait courtesy of the artist.
Radio drama, objects and illustrations present the war over the Manial Island in the nineteenth century, where the conflict between Mamluks and modernity took place. Through a dramatic perspective and components, the project poses a question of how to complicate the role of protagonist and antagonist in times of crisis? The radio drama presents different narratives of fugitives and explores those who didn’t fit the modern project of Mohamed Ali.
NOTHING VANISHES, EVERYTHING TRANSFORMS
Mohamed Abdelkarim The Only Survivor of the Modernity, 2018 Installation, audio track, costumes and flags Photo: Abdallah Dawestashy ART D’ÉGYPTE
Mohamed Abla enjoys a strong following among both artists and art lovers in Egypt and beyond as one of the most established and recognized contemporary artists in Egypt. Born in Mansoura in 1953, he is a painter, sculptor, engraver and installation artist with a focus on graphics and oil painting. He has combined various techniques, all against a backdrop of heavily relevant political and social commentary. After graduating from the Faculty of Fine Arts in Alexandria in 1973, Abla embarked upon a seven-year journey around Europe in 1978, where he visited museums in Spain, France, Belgium and Germany, eventually studying art, sculpture and graphics in Vienna and Zurich. He presented his first solo exhibition at the Hohmann Gallery in Germany, followed by shows at Gallery Ewat in Holland in 1989, Art Hall Orebro in Sweden and the Egyptian Academy of Fine Arts in Rome in 1991. After the birth of his son, Abla moved back to Egypt, where he held several solo exhibitions around the country. In 1994, he won first place at the Kuwait Biennale, followed by the Grand Prix at the Alexandria Biennale in 1997. He has also participated in several international art events such as the Havana Biennale, and his work has been part of several group exhibitions at the Kunst Museum in Bonn, Germany. In 2007, Abla founded the Fayoum Art Centre and two years later, he established the first caricature museum in the Middle East, also in Fayoum. He now lives between Egypt and Germany. Portrait courtesy of the artist.
â€˜Years ago, I began to collect old photographs of Egypt, especially from the 1940s and 1950s. In my opinion, Egypt was at the pinnacle of its renaissance and awakening, and Egyptians were at the height of their sense of self-esteem, full of optimism and hope. That sense was among all classes of our society; the rich and the poor. I learned this from the photos I collected, as well as from the cinema and films of the era, which contributed to my admiration for the aesthetics. My childhood and my dreams were formed through that world. It became my safety zone to which I run away whenever I felt dissatisfaction and incompatibility with reality. In 2008, I started my Nostalgia project to celebrate that era. The persona of that time is the focus of my paintings. Today, I am happy to exhibit my work in such a fantastic place, that I see as a perfect gallery. When you launch a gallery inside a heritage place, like the Egyptian Museum in 2017, and now Manial Palace, you sustain that dialogue among generations of artists. Each place has its own soul, that is reflected on everything inside it or around it. The soul of this place affects both artists and visitors in a constructive manner. Also, artists have their own presence, which enriches the soul of the place.â€™ NOTHING VANISHES, EVERYTHING TRANSFORMS
Mohamed Abla Nostalgia (series), 2008 Acrylic on canvas Varied dimensions Photos: Abdallah Dawestashy
The Commandant 150 x 120 cm
The Engagement 160 x 140 cm
The Teacher 90 x 120 cm
The Family 120 x 80 cm
The Prince 150 x 120 cm
A Couple 120 x 80 cm
Policeman 150 x 120 cm
Family I 140 x 120 cm
The Policemen and his Son 140 x 120 cm
The Scout 80 x 60 cm
Three Guys 80 x 120 cm
Family II 60 x 90 cm
The Friends 60 x 40 cm
The Sisters 120 x 100 cm ART D’ÉGYPTE
Mohamed Monaiseer was born in Cairo, Egypt in 1989 where he currently works and lives. He received his BA in Educational Art from Cairo University, where he also received his MFA. He explains his influences:
‘My works in drawing and painting give body and form to immaterial phenomena. Once, I was in a cemetery and found, at the foot of a tomb, an old piece of fabric that had been part of a burial shroud. I felt a communication with this piece of cloth. It had been around for a long time and I didn’t know what it had been through, who it had belonged to. My fascination with the relic has had a lasting influence on my work.’ — MM Monaiseer creates drawings and paintings that delineate mystical and transcendental concepts. The obsessive repetition seen in his works comments on the potency of a word or figure after it has been multiplied and reproduced ad nauseam. The artist draws and paints on fabric, canvas, and paper, leaving the medium in its raw form. The shroud-like works add to the ethereal notions Monaiseer explores.
He has participated in many group exhibitions including Open Exhibition, Townhouse Gallery, Cairo (2013); 24th and 25th Youth Salon, Palace of the Arts, Cairo (2014/2015); The Bridge (travelling exhibition), Caravan Arts Europe, USA/ Egypt (2015); Roznama 4, Medrar for Contemporary Art, Cairo (2015); Blind Date, Sfeir-Semler Gallery, Beirut (2015) and Nest, al-Riwaq Gallery, Bahrain (2017). Monaiseer has also presented solo exhibitions including Mohamed Monaiseer, Gezira Centre for the Arts, Cairo (2013); Muted, Safarkhan Gallery, Cairo (2014) and Barzakh, Safarkhan Gallery, Cairo (2015). He was also the prize winner in the 25th Youth Salon at the Cairo Opera House (2014). Portrait courtesy of the artist.
‘For my personal dictionary, I collect things that affect me, objects that draw my attention, and images that carry the spirit of the places I visit. I am constantly adding to this memoir of my personal visual culture whose symbols translate into an encyclopaedia of feelings and emotions. Every time I exhibit these works, they are different. I am always asking what it is that touches me: is it the material, the visual, or the spiritual? I use people’s fascination with old things—the artefact and the icon, for instance—to create an emotional state between viewer and object. The relic helps me overcome the barrier between my audience and my art. My works are provocative in three ways: in terms of concept, in terms of technique, and as a reminder of history, of the passing of time.’ NOTHING VANISHES, EVERYTHING TRANSFORMS
Mohamed Monaiseer Dictionary, 2014 Installation, drawings on fabric Photos: Malak Shenouda Mohamed Monaiseer Dictionary, 2014 Detail drawings ©ATHR Gallery, courtesy of the artist ART D’ÉGYPTE
Nadine H. was born in 1974 in Cairo, Egypt and currently lives and works in London. She received a BA in English and comparative literature from the American University in Cairo and an MA in fine art from Central Saint Martins College of Art and Design, London. A multi-disciplinary and conceptual artist, she works with painting, writing, sound installations and video. She deconstructs gender dynamics and social taboos by investigating the relationship between the public versus the private, the external versus the internal and the intimate, which are key to Middle Eastern society. A transnational artist, her painting explores text and image and constructs flawless multi-layered canvases that eliminate all visible brush strokes pointing to the gestural disappearance of the artist. Her work is now positioned on the international artistic scene. She has exhibited her work in Cairo (2008, 2009, 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013), London (2006), Dubai (2007, 2011), Washington DC (2005) and Paris (2005). For her fourth solo show at ArtTalks Gallery in Cairo, she explored a new medium, mirrors, to pursue her experimentations with text and image. Portrait courtesy of Abdallah Dawestashy.
Royal beds, as spaces of power-love and legacy tease our imagination. The bed sheets of the Manial Palace made of cotton, a fabric rooted in ancient Egypt, become the carrier of multiple histories and exhibit the private domain of royal lives. As it builds a bridge between past and present, the cotton thread weaves the forgotten and reinvented histories of Egypt. The royal bed sheet carries us relentlessly through the eerie yet lamenting sounds of ‘just like you just like now’, evoking a state of ‘missingness’; a recollection of feelings, a profound melancholy for what once was. An extension of the royal bed, the crumpled bed sheet invites us to unearth the secret whispered tales inscribed between the sheets and serves as the memorial for love. They confront us with the blank screens of cultural memory and question happy ending mythologies though the conflicting and flickering words: Nadine H. Happy Ending, 2018 Projection stills Images courtesy of the artist
HAPPY ENDING AND THERE IS NO HAPPY ENDING.
NOTHING VANISHES, EVERYTHING TRANSFORMS
Nadine H. Happy Ending, 2018 Projection Image courtesy of MO4 Network ART D’ÉGYPTE
Nihal Wahby is an Egyptian artist residing in Cairo. She studied painting in the studio of the late Hassan Soliman who played a major role in her artistic development during the earlier years of her practice. She has also taken multiple courses at Central Saint Martins College of Art and Design in London. She recently ventured into creating video works and installations, relying on an interdisciplinary approach to complement the vision of each new series she embarks on. Her work is highly influenced by contemporary culture and the impact of social changes as well as by the history of ancient Egyptian and Greek mythology. She regularly produces work which focuses on challenging viewers’ awareness to propose questions about identity and self-realization. She has created work that explores the relationship between one’s notion of physical reality with the ethereal and unknown, encouraging the participation of viewers in order to activate her works by creating shared and immersive visual experiences. Since 1997, Wahby has been serving as a curator and collection director for the Pharos Art Collection, a private collection of both modern and contemporary Egyptian artworks. She has participated in several group exhibitions in Egypt and abroad since 2006; and has had solo exhibitions at the Hanager Arts Centre on the Cairo Opera House grounds in 2012, 2015 and 2018.
She recently took part in the first edition of the Book-Object Biennale at the National Literary Museum in Bucharest where the museum acquired her exhibited work for their permanent collection. She has also been widely collected in the Middle East. Portrait courtesy of the artist.
Inspired by the site of Manial Palace and the styles incorporated into its decor by Prince Mohamed Ali Tewfik, Nihal Wahby has chosen to engage directly with the history and aesthetic elements of the palace, which combine Persian, Ottoman, neo-Mamluk, rococo and Moorish influences. Wahby’s work comprises three separate installations, each interpreting a unique motif or element of the palace with the intention of bridging history within the context of space and time in the present day. The first, Ottoman Roses, is composed of preserved roses inspired by the science and process of mummification in reference to Ancient Egypt and the beginning of Egyptian art history. The second, Anima Mea, pays homage to Prince Mohamed Ali Tewfik’s collection of preserved butterflies on display in the palace. The piece considers the concept of change, growth, and transformation in Greek mythology through the symbol of the butterfly. The butterfly also represents the souls of those who have passed away. The third work, titled Book of Memories, includes a selection of poetry from the palace walls, interlaced with drawings inspired by the design elements of the palace. Collectively, all three works speak about the history of Egypt through art whilst simultaneously paying homage to the art and design found within the palace itself. NOTHING VANISHES, EVERYTHING TRANSFORMS
Nihal Wahby (above) Ottoman Roses, 2018 Flowers, glue, acrylics on canvas in a wooden and glass box 70 x 70 x 10 cm each (4 pieces)
Anima Mea, 2018 Installation, glass, resin, wood and threads Total dimensions vary Book of Memories, 2018 Mixed media on canvas 40 x 240 cm Nihal Wahby (right) Anima Mea Detail Photos: Abdallah Dawestashy ART D’ÉGYPTE
Said Badr was born in Kafr al-Sheikh governorate in 1965. He studied sculpture at the Faculty of Fine Arts in Alexandria, receiving both bachelor’s and master’s degrees in 1998. He then received a scholarship to study at the Carrara Academy in Italy from 2000 to 2004, where he received a PhD in techniques of magnification and minimization in stone sculpture. Badr’s artworks are closely linked to ancient Egyptian sculpture. His works carry that sort of sobriety, gravity and oldness when he manipulates tough materials, while casting upon them a contemporary and more abstract character. Despite the solemn and firm qualities of such materials, we find that Badr manifests in them a state of spiritual sublimation. He relies upon the potential energy of the artworks, and thus he achieves a rare case of purity of form. Badr’s works carry certain implications that are related to his awareness of an important message, that of human history, and thus his sculptures rise to stand as new guards for this history. Badr has been teaching at the Faculty of Fine Arts in Alexandria since 1991. He is also a member of the Plastic Artists’ Syndicate and has exhibited in Egypt, Algeria, Sudan, Oman, Kuwait, Italy, Austria, France, China, Russia and Canada. He has also been part of the 19th, 23rd and 24th Alexandria Biennales for Mediterranean Countries. Badr has sculpted monumental field artworks all over Egypt, as well as in Germany, Spain, Portugal, Lebanon and Turkey. Portrait courtesy of the artist.
Some works look like remnants of old cities; blocks of stone appear to be in a stage between presence and absence, in a symbolic reference to monuments, history and the creation of civilizations. This work adopts the architectural style of the Manial Palace and the surrounding buildings as visual elements mixed in an expressive system amidst a specific topographical environment. It expresses this symbolic dimension in a relationship of different sizes and axes, which encompass the architecture of the palace and other buildings in a harmonious rhythmic texture. Monuments and themes of ancient time, architecture and cities bring us back to the depths of history. Integrated multi-directional structures, polished parts, and spontaneous irregular parts reveal material properties, strength, and beauty. Surfaces with fine graffiti, and other, silent extended surfaces with varying tones of black to grey, and finally messages that whisper time, history, civilizations, cultures and beliefs—these are vocabularies through which my sculptural vision was shaped to provide a visual solution that combines sculpture, architecture and composite work. It relies on presenting an assortment of artistic elements in a wide-ranging environment that engulfs the viewer with all of its effects: human messages on the land, gates, and architecture of ancient history. We need to preserve and evoke these legacies and forms to consecrate messages throughout time and place. Now, we see that all is revealed; history creates our features and colours for its protection against dangers of extinction, so that we can track the story of humanity and the ways of the world. Over the centuries, history has warned us, ‘Man ... you are to learn how to guard history; Nothing Vanishes Everything Transforms.’ Everything is summoned to be present with the spirit of the time. NOTHING VANISHES, EVERYTHING TRANSFORMS
From left to right: Said Badr Messages II, 2018 Polyester 350 x 170 x 120 cm
Said Badr From the Heritage, 2018 Polyester 120 x 90 x 70 cm
Said Badr Messages I, 2018 Polyester 425 x 220 x 150 cm
Images courtesy of MO4 Network ART D’ÉGYPTE
Sarkis Tossoonian is a sculptor born in Alexandria in 1953. He graduated from Alexandria Faculty of Fine Arts (sculpture) in 1979 and is a member of the Plastic Artistsâ€™ Syndicate and the Atelier dâ€™Alexandrie in Egypt. He has held 16 personal exhibitions in both Alexandria and Cairo and has participated in over 150 group exhibitions in Alexandria, Cairo, Port Said, Ismailia, Mansoura and Marsa Matrouh. He has also exhibited in international group exhibitions in Cyprus 1996, Italy 2003, Japan 2004, Sudan 2005, Rumania 2006, France 2008 and Yemen 2010. Tossoonian has participated in the International Sculpture Symposium in Aswan in 2006, 2007 and 2008 and in the Alexandria International Symposium in 2007 and 2008. He won the first prize for sculpture from the 7th Port Said National Biennale in 2005. His pieces are exhibited at the Horreya Garden, Cairo; the Museum of Egyptian Modern Art, Cairo; the Aswan International Open-air Sculpture Museum; the Bibliotheca Alexandrina, Alexandria and in a number of private collections in Egypt, Cyprus and Canada. Portrait courtesy of the artist.
Born in the port city of Alexandria, the artist is influenced by the sea, waves, water and sun, as well by his mixed Egyptian-Armenian art heritage. His sculptures use figurative images combining the old and the new. In Opening Up, he represents the female figure as Egypt. The dress she is wearing is influenced by the waves of the sea and bygone Egyptian culture. The smooth part of the figure is a scarf that opens away from her body to distribute her international knowledge to the world. The male figure represents the knowledge of cloning. The eyes are covered with a ribbon, which expresses how this knowledge is still under-developed. The closed box in his hand represents the secret of cloning, which, as yet, does not complete the universe.
NOTHING VANISHES, EVERYTHING TRANSFORMS
Sarkis Tossoonian Cloning, 2004 Polyester 230 x 55 x 50 cm Sarkis Tossoonian Opening Up, 2008 Polyester 210 x 90 x 55 cm Images courtesy of the artist ART D’ÉGYPTE
Shady Elnoshokaty is an Egyptian visual artist and academician, born in the city of Damietta in 1971. He graduated from the Faculty of Art Education, Helwan University in 1994 and continued to teach painting and drawing there until 2009. He is currently a professor of studio practices in the visual arts programme at the American University in Cairo (AUC). He received his PhD of Art Education in 2007 for a study on the philosophy of new media arts. His projects have been featured in many established contemporary art museums and international exhibitions around the world including the Venice Biennale, the Heyward Gallery, the Mori Museum, the Kunst Museum in Stockholm, Bochum, the Institut du Monde Arabe, and many others. He was also an executive curator for Ahmed Basiony’s art project, 30 Days of Running in the Space, for the Egyptian pavilion at the 2011 Venice Biennale. Elnoshokaty has also played an undeniable role in the field of art education in Egypt for the last decade. In 2012, he established ASCII Foundation for contemporary art education, which aims to educate and develop young thinkers and researchers by encouraging new and alternative media practices and visual creativity. Portrait courtesy of the artist.
COLONY is a research-based art project presented in a sequence of episodes. It started in 2013 with a project titled COLONY —Latitude ‘2013-2015’. This part of the project, COLONY—The Sounds of the Seven Tears, assumes a different understanding of the process of creation seeing it as complex stages using mathematical permutations and combinations and natural sciences in order to examine the relation to ancient mythology, which also evolved using similar ideas starting from medieval alchemy and its integration of mathematics, physics, statistics, myths, ancient religions and imagination! The common multi-layered area on which the idea of this project is based examines the ambiguity of that creation from sequences of a mythological/computational new world of ideas. The theory of permutations and combinations in the science of arithmetic in calculus, algebra, and statistics is based on the idea of infinite possibilities and consequences. Although it is a rational approach using equations that aim to produce the largest number of virtual results, from the mating and fusion of a group of basal factors, germs or cells of the idea. The project envisions the creation of more than 49 ideas resulting from the union of the seven elements with the seven wonders of the universe (seven planets; seven colours of the rainbow; seven seas; seven chakras; seven days; seven musical tones; and seven stages of thought). The initial union will produce forty-nine ideas; further unions will produce multiples until the seventh generates sevenfold multiples. Thus, the arithmetic approach can provide infinite creative possibilities of the seven wonders. The new image may be of a different universe that seems complex but in reality, originated from the simple union of two cells or two pieces of information or images or sounds or words ...! It may be of a world endless in its diversity and its complexity and its continuous and infinite creation of new concepts and ideas. NOTHING VANISHES, EVERYTHING TRANSFORMS
Shady Elnoshokaty COLONY—The Sounds of the Seven Tears, 2018 Mixed media installation Photos: Abdallah Dawestashy ART D’ÉGYPTE
Yasmine Elmeleegy is a visual artist born in Cairo in 1991 where she currently lives and works. Upon completing her BFA in painting at the Faculty of Fine Arts in Cairo in 2013, Elmeleegy studied multimedia at the Ecole supérieure des beaux arts de Nimes (ESBAN) in France and was part of the 2016 MASS programme for contemporary arts in Alexandria. She currently practices sculpture, video, installation and interdisciplinary approaches. Her recent group exhibitions include Very Sustainable—Environmental Revelation” at the Museum of Contemporary Art Yinchuan, China, 2017; Topophilia as part of MEETINGS Festival, Nees, Denmark, 2017; 12th Dak’Art Biennale of Contemporary African Art in Senegal, 2016; and Bjcem Mediterranea 17 Young Artists Biennale, Italy, 2015. Portrait courtesy of the artist.
Yasmine Elmeleegy Rites of Passage, 2016-2018 Detail Image courtesy of the artist Yasmine Elmeleegy Rites of Passage, 2016-2018 Detail Image courtesy of Mostafa Samy
Rites of Passage starts with a moment of retrieval: the repair of a porcelain doll gifted to her mother from her father on their wedding day. Obsessed with the task of continuously repairing, remaking, and restoring household objects as a mechanism for mending familial relationships, Elmeleegy delves into the myriad connotations of reconstruction. The work is a garden of cement, brick, wax, porcelain, prints, and painting containing objects in the process of renovation. Inflected by memory and preoccupied with fixability, Elmeleegy’s project displays an intimate cycle of excavation, restoration, and creation.
NOTHING VANISHES, EVERYTHING TRANSFORMS
Yasmine Elmeleegy Rites of Passage, 2016-2018 Mixed media installation, wax, cement, marble, ceramic, glass, metal, video projection and painting on canvas. Total dimensions vary Photos: Abdallah Dawestashy This project is supported by Mophradat ART Dâ€™Ă‰GYPTE
NOTHING VANISHES, EVERYTHING TRANSFORMS
WRITINGS ON ART ART D’ÉGYPTE
The Power of Art in Peacebuilding
Rev. Paul-Gordon Chandler
Art [is a] means for destroying our way of thinking and behaving. Ramsès Younan Twentieth-century Egyptian surrealist painter The Manial Palace in Cairo on the Nile’s al-Rhoda Island, built by Prince Mohamed Ali Tewfik during the first third of the twentieth century, illustrates the beauty and power of the arts to serve as a bridge between the Middle East and the West. Designed in a style that integrated European art nouveau and rococo with more traditional Islamic architecture, such as Ottoman, Moorish and Persian, the palace is a most inspiring artistic mosaic reflecting East and West. Even its surrounding grounds reflect the East-West nature of the place with both a Persian garden and an extensive English landscape garden bordering the Nile. Knowing how uniquely symbolic this palace was may perhaps be an underlying reason that the prince put in his will his wish for the palace to be transformed into a museum after his death. It all serves to remind us that during a time of escalating misunderstanding, stereotypes and sometimes even violence between the Middle East and the West, the arts can be one of the most effective ways to build the all-too-necessary bridges needed by enhancing understanding, bringing about respect, enabling sharing, and facilitating new friendships between those of different cultures and creeds. Certainly, in the midst of widening divides of discord and misapprehension, our time calls for a whole new kind of movement; one that builds on what we hold in common. Hence now more than ever, ‘creative demonstrations’ of dialogue and peacebuilding are called for. Art is a universal language that has the ability to dissolve the differences that divide us, changing negative perceptions and creating lasting change in the quest for justice and peace. As the late Nobel Prize-winning Egyptian novelist Naguib Mahfouz said, ‘Art is language of the entire human personality’. The arts can profoundly embody a fundamental message of East-West harmony, seeking to serve as a common starting point on which to build towards seeing
NOTHING VANISHES, EVERYTHING TRANSFORMS
the development of societies that inherently respect and honour diversity, living and working peacefully together. In today’s context, it is the artists that can lead the way. With their embrace of greater tolerance, artists provide new pathways of understanding that transcend borders and how we see the ‘other’. The power of creativity counteracts the demonization of the ‘other’. For as long as conflict has torn apart the human family, art has allowed us to see similarity within difference, offering a mode of reconciliation. This has been clearly demonstrated for us around the Middle East, where time and time again artistic expression spontaneously surfaces following periods of conflict or political turmoil. One thinks of the public street art that has flourished since the so-called ‘Arab Spring’, and the music groups that have been formed, the films produced, the plays created, and the novels written. As the dynamic former minister of culture in Tunisia, Latifa Lakhdar, says, ‘Creativity is the greatest way to [approach] our battle against those people who would destroy even the most elementary principles of life’. Perhaps more than any other field, the arts offer strategic resources for non-violently reducing conflicts, transforming relationships in the aftermath of violence and building the capacities required for peace. Leo Tolstoy, the great Russian novelist wrote, ‘The task of art is enormous […] Art should cause violence to be set aside. And it is only art that can accomplish this’. But one may ask, why art? There is something transcendent about art. Art creates a new pathway of understanding that transcends differences and has the power to speak to us on a deep, subconscious level. As Kahlil Gibran, the early twentieth-century Lebanese-born poet-artist, so powerfully wrote, ‘The mission of art is to bring out the unfamiliar from the most familiar, from nature to the infinite’. Gibran goes on to say, ‘Art is one step from the visibly known toward the unknown’. The words of Paul Tillich, the great German theologian, echo this unique power of the arts, ‘All arts create symbols for a level of reality which cannot be reached in ART D’ÉGYPTE
any other way’. Art takes us into that deeper dimension, which is how Anish Kapoor, the renowned British-Indian sculptor describes his work when he says, ‘I am attempting to dig away at [...] the great mystery of being’. Kapoor continues, ‘We live in a fractured world. I’ve always seen it as my role as an artist to attempt to make wholeness’.
Art invites us to re-imagine ourselves, our situations, our internal narratives. Art is not a cure, but it is a focal point. Art can offer a pause, a moment of reflection. Art can motivate and inspire. Art can remind us of what makes us most human. The arts lead us to realize, as Elif Shafak, the bestselling Turkish novelist and public intellectual, has written, ‘The distance between “us” and “them” has less to do with the world outside than with the world inside our minds’. Another reason for the transformative power of the arts in peacebuilding is that art is ‘indirect’ in its approach to addressing very difficult and challenging issues. As a result, the all too often defensive walls are not raised. As an indirect catalyst, art creates a safe and equalizing space in which to begin real dialogue and sensitively addresses negative stereotypes of the ‘other’, as well as even healing old rifts within communities. Repeatedly, we have seen the words of the fourteenth-century Persian poet and mystic Hafiz to be true, ‘Art is the conversation … Art offers an opening for the heart … Art is, at least, the knowledge of where we are standing … In this wonderland … We are partners straddling the universe’. Therefore, the arts aren’t only about encouraging intercultural dialogue, but should be about something much deeper. They naturally lead to intercultural friendships, establishing sincere human relationships with those of different cultural, religious or ethnic backgrounds that cannot be broken by the words or actions of others. The aim of art is always higher than art, for the arts can help us see someone different than us for whom they really are, that they are a reflection of ourselves. As Kahlil Gibran so powerfully wrote, ‘Your neighbour NOTHING VANISHES, EVERYTHING TRANSFORMS
is your other self, dwelling behind a wall. In understanding, all walls shall fall down’. Her Majesty Queen Rania al-Abdullah of Jordan, in her foreword to one of our CARAVAN exhibition catalogues writes, ‘For isn’t that the joy of art—its ability to speak to us all about what is both familiar and unfamiliar? To be a language that transcends borders and barriers. To be the consummate diplomat, travelling the world overcoming race, religion and rancour, building bridges of respect and understanding between us all, North, South, East and West. As a result, because of the transformative power of art, artistic initiatives become encounter points, bringing people together that would normally never come together, to gain insights into the ‘other’ and to alleviate fears that exist. It could not be timelier for the arts to play a central role in promoting peacebuilding and a sectarian-free world. Some words from two artists serve as wise counsel for us all at this moment in time. Leonard Bernstein, the renowned late composer and conductor, clearly described the unique transformational role of the arts when he wrote, ‘The point is, art never stopped a war […] That was never its function. Art cannot change events. But it can change people. It can affect people so that they are changed— they then act in a way that may affect the course of events [...] by the way they behave, the way they think’. And perhaps no words resonate better with the spirit of the arts furthering peacebuilding than the words of that profound Dutch artist, Vincent van Gogh, ‘The more I think it over, the more I feel that there is nothing more truly artistic than to love people’.
Rev. Paul-Gordon Chandler is the founding president of CARAVAN Arts (www.oncaravan.org).
Modernism and the Visual Arts in the Middle East and North Africa
Dr Nada Shabout
Modernism in the non-Western postcolonial world has been often characterized as a dilemma: an imposed Eurocentric mode of being that is generally very selective in its applications by the imperialist colonial powers, that at once excludes and renders the non-West as belated and needy as it equally imprisons it in an incessant cycle of rejection while it tries to belong. Thus, despite the transnational evolution of modern art, of which the modernists themselves were aware, its canonical history still emphasizes the centrality of Western art, which in turn became synonymous with universal art against which all other art productions are measured. How to escape a reductive suppressive reading of global forms of knowledge? How to ‘untranslate’ the ‘other’ which has not only been repeatedly translated for us but also packaged? How could we articulate modern art outside of Europe within a discipline that is itself a European construction? Scholars have begun to address these questions. A number of historians of the non-West have called for moving new readings of the modern away from Europe as the source of ‘real’ knowledge. Aamir Mufti, however, points out that we (scholars of the modern non-West) are all Eurocentric in our comparative methodologies that inevitably privilege Europe as its referent for stylistic and period categories. Mufti nevertheless does not advocate abolishing the comparatist approach but rather is concerned with the disciplinary conditions in comparative studies. Rajagopalan Radhakrishnan points out the need for intellectual autonomy, ‘Unless and until other worlds are recognized not merely as other histories but as other knowledges’, inequity will remain (2008; 58). In explaining the imperialist approach to modernity, Timothy Mitchell does not deny its claims of ‘impossible’ universalism. On the contrary, he explains, ‘One of the main characteristics of modernity has always been its autocentric picture of itself as the expression of a universal certainty, whether the certainty of human reason freed from the particular traditions, or of technological power freed from the constraints of the natural world’ (2000; xi).
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It is in fact this claim to universality that has been the element behind the exclusion of non-Western modernism in the arts, as the different regions of the world continue their quest to be part of it. Yet as Mufti argues, ‘The genuine alternative to this universalism of contemporary Eurocentric thought is not a retreat into the local, into so many localities, but rather a general account of the play of the particular in the universalizing process of capitalist-imperial modernity’ (2005; 122).
The Middle East and North Africa In light of these issues, we are faced with another unresolved problem: the contested geopolitically designated region of the Middle East and North Africa (MENA). It has been generally agreed that MENA consists of the bloc known as the Arab world (another contested term based on the dominant commonality but not exclusivity of the Arabic language), Iran and Turkey. In addition to its long Islamic history, this vast region shares postcolonial experiences as well as a collective marginality in the art canon. But beyond that, differences and particularities abound. This problem is heightened by the issue of periodization—when does modernism begin and end in the MENA? The official metanarrative situates the birth of modernism in the region during the period of colonialism that brought the stagnant underdeveloped territories of the Ottoman and Safavid Empires into violent confrontation with the modern West. The resulting art is commonly explained in terms of Orientalism—that the West became obsessed with the ‘timelessness’ and ‘backwardness’ of the East as the exotic ‘other’, while the East was in awe of the progressiveness of the ‘superior civilization’. The West was designated as the leader and the East as a perpetual imitator, thus positioning modernism of the region as belated and imitative, within its historical development in Europe. More research is needed to reverse the arrogant belief in a historical and creative ‘black out’ during the eighteenth and nineteenth ART D’ÉGYPTE
centuries, and to move beyond official narratives of modernism in MENA that simply follow the general temporal divisions established by Western history. A possible approach is to view modern art in the MENA region as dialectical and discursive reticulations encompassing global influences, discontinuity and rupture. Moreover, the broad narrative must be accepted as nonlinear and non-chronological in history and production. Instead, we might focus on certain themes that reverberate across the region.
Nation building (and assertion) is one such theme, which reflected artists’ awareness of power structures and the need to respond to the emergent local national discourses. Many thus engaged in modernist constructions of national visual identities. Their work in this context was often reflexive, experimental and subversive, positing various sites of resistance and contestations of European modernism—see my discussion of ‘Art Groups’, below, for examples. Another theme is to see art as a form of resistance to Orientalist narratives. Arab artists’ defiance of the parameters of modern art as set by Europe included a continued fascination with symbolism and narrative despite negotiating a new abstract language. Ideological resistance pervaded and motivated most experiments in aesthetics and form, particularly as formulated by movements and artists’ groups. Adopting certain Western stylistic paradigms, such as the nude, allowed for what Kirsten Scheid terms tathqif, a cultural process that provided a space of aesthetic interaction between the local and the foreign. In particular, non-representational art allowed artists to articulate intellectual and visual reconciliations of their present and past, especially in response to the dichotomy of tradition and modernity emphasised by European modernism. For MENA artists, modernity was perceived mostly as a long gradual development rather than an abrupt historical shift. That is expressly why they did not find a contradiction between modernity NOTHING VANISHES, EVERYTHING TRANSFORMS
and history and saw the legacy of the Enlightenment of no direct consequence to them. Modernity represented moments of renewed energy and creativity, which allowed that mode of understanding to continue beyond its critique and then rejection in Europe.
Art Institutions Art institutions in the MENA had a specific role in defining modern art and setting standards. The first ones established in the region had strong ties to archaeology as an important element in developing national visual cultures. In the absence of museums of modern art, art institutions educated the public, influencing taste. They were also instrumental in promoting modern art beyond the social circles of the elites. 79
The history of art institutions in the Arab world begins with the establishment of the first art school in Cairo in 1908 by Prince Youssef Kamal under the directorship of the sculptor Guillaume Laplagne. Among its first students was Mahmoud Mokhtar, who became Egypt’s leading pioneer artist and is considered the father of modern Arab sculpture. Upon completion of his studies, he became the first Egyptian artist to be sent on a scholarship to Paris, where he exhibited regularly at the Salon des Artistes Français. Despite recent arguments that question the nationalistic traits in his work, he did emphasize a strong connection to Egypt’s Pharaonic past. In Egyptian Awakening (1919-1928), executed in pink granite and a style reminiscent of hieroglyphic, Mokhtar juxtaposed the past in the form of a sphinx rising and the future woman (fellaha) unveiling. Additionally, the number of native artists sent to Europe on scholarships increased prior to the Second World War; upon their return, they formed the nucleus of modern art. Art societies were also formed in most countries. In almost every major regional city an initial group of ‘Friends of the Arts’ was formed in support of artists. They became influential in providing public access to the work of new MENA artists and in raising awareness of their art. ART D’ÉGYPTE
Art Groups Throughout the region, artistsâ€™ groups were formed and further facilitated the dissemination of modern art ideals beyond official institutions. Many were short-lived, but a number had an impact that became highly influential. The importance of their role coincided with the social, political and intellectual ideas of the time. Some paralleled political parties and opposition groups in presenting a united front against Western forces.
Two concerns occupied the majority of artists of the region during most of the twentieth century. The first was to define a national (local or regional) artistic identity through style and content. The second was to engage with international art. They rebelled against naturalism and realism, which had dominated recent artistic tradition and opted for more revolutionary styles. As avant-garde groups, they changed the course of the aesthetic debate, which had been thus far preoccupied with thematic interpretation, to a more formalist focus on the unity between content and form, with styles evolving from socio-cultural realities. The Egyptian group Art and Liberty included the most important and creative artists of the period. Instigated by the poet and polemicist Georges Henein in 1938, the group responded equally to the events of the Second World War and the internal political situation in Egypt. Henein, who was part of a Francophone group in the early 1930s, was a champion of surrealism, which he perceived as transnational and thus more relevant for Egypt than cubism or futurism. He initiated an Egyptian surrealist group in 1937. In response to the manifesto, For a Revolutionary Independent Art, issued in Mexico by the French surrealist poet AndrĂŠ Breton, the exiled ex-Bolshevik revolutionary Leon Trotsky and the painters Diego Rivera and Frida Kahlo, and the subsequent formation of the International Federation of Independent Revolutionary Art (FIARI in French), the Art and Liberty group was formed as a FIARI cell to combat fascist art and socialist realism and published a manifesto entitled Long Live Degenerate Art. NOTHING VANISHES, EVERYTHING TRANSFORMS
The group mounted five controversial annual ‘Independent Art Expositions’ in the period between 1940 and 1945 in Cairo as well as publishing a number of periodicals, including Don Quichotte (seventeen weekly issues, 6 December 1939-29 March 1940) and al-Tatawwur (seven monthly issues, January-July 1940), edited by the surrealist Anwar Kamil and promoted at its launch as ‘the first avant-garde literary and artistic review for Arabic youth’. Nevertheless, the Art and Liberty were not a surrealist group but rather consisted of a coalition of mostly left-wing artists and activists who joined in radical social, educational, and political activities while aiming for ‘open creative expression and more personal and political liberties.’ Despite continuous opposition and tension within Egyptian society surrounding the group, their exhibitions were significant in introducing Egypt to new artistic trends. Their intent was to shock and surprise the public in an effort to break the norms. As pan-Arabism climaxed in the mid-twentieth century, Arab artists became more connected. The first meeting for Arab artists was held in Damascus in 1971 and resulted in the establishment of the Union of Arab Plastic Artists. It held its first conference in 1973 in Baghdad, followed by the first Arab Biennale in Baghdad (Iraq) in 1974 and in Rabat (Morocco) in 1976. Other art exhibits and festivals were held in different Arab cities, such as al-Wassity Festival organized in Baghdad in 1972 and the annual Cultural Musim Asilah inaugurated in Asilah (Morocco) in 1978. Other important art groups were formed around the region later in the century, signifying further evolutions and shifts. However, the political instability in the region, the wars and civil unrest, periodically halted the progress of art and eventually caused artists’ migration to the West. The enthusiastic environment of the early and mid-twentieth century as well as group activities stopped as governments took control over the direction of art. The cultural crisis that accompanied al-Naksa—the 1967 Six-day War—added new ART D’ÉGYPTE
demands on Arab artists. Notions of originality and authenticity, so central to Western modern art, took on a different meaning within the context of MENA art.
Extract from Shabout, N., ‘Modernism and the Visual Arts in the Middle East and North Africa’ in Ross, S. and Lindgren, A.C. (eds.), The Modernist World, Routledge, 2015, pp. 488-99.
Works Cited Ali, W., Modern Islamic Art: Development and Continuity, Gainesville, Florida University Press, 1997. 82
Aamir M., ‘Global Comparativisms’ in Bhabha, H. and Mitchell, W.J.T., (eds.), Edward
Said: Continuing the Conversation, 2005, pp. 109-126. Doss-Davezac, S., ‘Turning the Tide,’ in Mikdadi, S. N. (ed.), Forces of Change:
Artists of the Arab World, Lafayette and Washington DC, National Museum of Women in the Arts, 1994. Fereshteh, D., and Diba, L. S. (eds.), Iran Modern, New York, The Asia Society Museum, 2013. Karnouk, L., Modern Egyptian Art: The Emergence of a National Style, Cairo, AUC Press, 1988. LaCoss, D., ‘Egyptian Surrealism and “Degenerate Art” in 1939’, Arab Studies
Journal, vol. 18, no. 1, 2010, pp. 78-118. Mitchell, T. (ed.), Questions of Modernity, Minneapolis, University of Minnesota Press, 2000. Radhakrishnan, R., Theory in an Uneven World, John Wiley & Sons, 2008. Said, E. W., Culture and Imperialism, New York, Knopf (distributed by Random House), 1993.
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–––, Orientalism, New York, Vintage Books (a division of Random House), 1994. Scheid, K., ‘Necessary Nudes: Hadatha and Muasira in the Lives of Modern Lebanese,’ International Journal of Middle East Studies, vol. 42, no. 2, 2010, p. 203. Shabout, N., Modern Arab Art: Formation of Arab Aesthetics, Gainesville, University Press of Florida, 2007. Shaw, W. M. K., Ottoman Painting: Reflections of Western Art from the Ottoman
Empire to the Turkish Republic, London, IB Tauris, 2011.
Notes  A number of studies have argued that modernity had its origin within a global exchange and interaction between West and non-West. For examples, see AbuLughod and Gran.  This is a fact acknowledged by many of us in the field, as demonstrated at the Third Annual Conference of the Association for Modern and Contemporary Art of the Arab World, Iran and Turkey, entitled, ‘On Likeness and Difference: Modern Art of the Middle East and the Confines of Modernism’, at the Kevorkian Centre, NYU, October 19-20, 2013.  See Said.  Kirsten Scheid explains tathqif as ‘recategorizing norms for interaction and self-scrutiny’ (p. 203).  The idea of an art school was opposed by some religious factions until the reformer Mohamed Abduh settled the question (Karnouk, p. 4).  See Davezac-Doss, p. 46.
ART IS BORN OUT OF ART
Dr Amal Nasr
There is no doubt that the attempt to meditate on works of art, linking them to historical artefacts and discovering their origins and roots, is one that provides great joy. Discovering the interrelationship between different stages of art and how ‘art is born out of art’ leads to an understanding of how individual artists are influenced and inspired to interpret the world around them. Each artist has his own visual memory formed by his observations and previous experiences and the artworks that have made an impression over the years. Understanding all these influences in an artist’s work is akin to reading a family tree and examining its roots, albeit one that is chosen by the artist himself. For me, meditating on the ‘halo’ that surrounds a contemporary work of art and discovering the influences that led to its creation is one of the most fascinating aspects of my work.
In this context, if we contemplate Islamic art and how it has influenced contemporary creations, we should first note that the West was the first to realize its importance in transforming the course of modern art. The transfer of Islamic works of art to Europe in the eleventh century led to the emergence of decorative arts influenced by Islamic art forms such as arabesque, engraving, geometric shapes and decorative colours. This also led to the appearance of Islamic influences in European architecture. Before the European Renaissance, there was considerable contact between the West and Islamic culture, whether through trade and diplomatic representation or through war. The influences of this cultural exchange are apparent from the Middle Ages, when Europeans used Islamic vessels carved from rock crystal to preserve holy relics as well as using the material itself to carve crosses and other sacred artefacts. Giotto introduced Eastern concepts such as elements of nature taken from plants, animals and birds into both portraiture and architecture. Giotto’s artistic revolution further influenced artists such as Botticelli, Filippino Lippi, Fra Angelico and others. Painters such as Duccio, Bellini and Raphael also used Arabic calligraphy in depicting the Virgin Mary and religious stories in the late medieval and early Renaissance periods. NOTHING VANISHES, EVERYTHING TRANSFORMS
It is noteworthy that Christians were preserving sacred relics in some of the greatest churches wrapped in pieces of Islamic textiles decorated with Arabic calligraphy or using these textiles to make clothing for priests. Artists of the time were also attracted to carpet designs and one can see carpet fragments in paintings under the throne of the Virgin Mary or under the feet of the saints or as table or floor coverings in the works of artists such as Holbein. In the latter half of the fifteenth century, a new phase in the process of cultural exchange between Italy and the Islamic East began to affect both cultures. The image of the Eastern Muslim appeared in portraits such as the painting of Sultan Mehmet II by Bellini in 1480, as well as in paintings representing the visits and official meetings between the two parties. The French Revolution of 1789 triggered an even stronger attraction to the East, exemplified by the Romantic movement, which embraced poeticism and drama and imagery of the past. The pioneering French Romantic artist EugĂ¨ne Delacroix frequently used Eastern motifs and was one of the first artists to visit Morocco in 1832. His Algerian Women is considered one of the most important examples of the Eastern influence within the Western aesthetic. The experiences of European artists such as Matisse, Klimt and others in the discovery of the East have resulted in a wide spectrum of work that shed the rigid traditions of classical European painting. This dialogue between Islamic and modern art continues until today. Contemporary artists are producing art that incorporates diverse elements of Islamic heritage and experiments with techniques and genres such as miniaturist art to present issues from our lived reality. I would like to present some examples of these experiences:
Shahzia Sikander Born in 1969 in Lahore, Pakistan, Shahzia Sikander studied Indian and Persian miniatures as a traditional field of study at the National College of Lahore before moving to the United States to continue her studies. She now lives and works in New York. Miniatures are the focus of her work which also includes painting, installation and ART Dâ€™Ă‰GYPTE
video. She explores through her works the integration of Muslim and Hindu culture by combining the symbolism of both in a way that integrates her personal history with her intellectual and religious convictions. She also discusses the relationship between power, gender and belief.
Fig. 1: Anonymous (Indian) Krishna Dancing with Gopi ca. 1775-1800 Paint on paper, 19.1 x 16.2 cm Gift of John and Berthe Ford, 2001, The Walters Art Museum Fig. 2: Shahzia Sikander Still from SpiNN, 2003 Video animation Image courtesy of the author
Sikander works to stimulate the visual memory of her audience by adding contemporary elements to a traditional optical field, that of Islamic miniatures, to encourage the viewer to reconcile the conflicting emotions hidden within the stunning miniature landscapes. She does not present her ideas through flat works, rather, she creates an atmosphere that combines several artistic categories. For example, in one of her video works, she presents the black rectangle of her laptop screen, from which the viewer moves to a square where random black signs emerge. We discover that these signs, which appear to be irregular silhouettes, are actually the hairstyles of the gopi women dancing with Lord Krishna (Fig. 1) in Indian miniatures. In Sikanderâ€™s representation, these forms multiply, and the womenâ€™s bodies disappear and take the form of birds and bats, as if threatening the invaders of these ancient empires (Fig. 2). She consistently attempts to generate new expectations for her visual elements and uses computer programmes that allow her the freedom and flexibility to create multi-layered and overlapping models in her work. Within this context, Sikander explores the conceptual aspect of the distance between the original visual text and its new translation in a contemporary context.
NOTHING VANISHES, EVERYTHING TRANSFORMS
Soody Sharifi Born in Tehran in 1955, Iranian artist Soody Sharifi was raised and educated in Houston, Texas. Through portrait and structural work, Sharifi explores the conflict between public and private space through conceptual and technical convergence. This contradiction is her main hypothesis as to the source of tension between the cultural background of the Muslim artist and contemporary American civilization. In her collection Series of Persian Delights, she isolates the elements of the miniatures and places them on a flat, coloured background in a space free of any signs indicating a specific time or place. She uses a contemporary colour, distinct from the original colour palette and combines within this contemporary space two aspects of character, one emanating from the traditional miniature and another from present reality, forcing the viewer to contemplate the piece from a new visual and intellectual standpoint (Fig. 3). In her collection Maxiatures, she adds contemporary elements to the traditional miniatures, planting them among the details so that we may not recognize them at first glance, generating an initial feeling of confusion between two contradictory worlds. As we approach the work, we discover the trick, gaining new insight of the work and raising new questions (Fig. 4). Fig. 3: Soody Sharifi Heaven Canâ€™t Wait (Persian Delights series), 2010 Archival digital print, 40.6 x 45.7 cm Image courtesy of the author Fig. 4: Soody Sharifi, Fashion Week (Maxiatures series), 2010 Digital collage, 101.6 x 152.4 cm Image courtesy of the author.
In her collection The Desert Behind the City is Mine , she incorporates contemporary issues in traditional miniature paintings through photographic collage, presenting models of miniature figures that re-examine their interaction between the contemporary and the historical. She removes the miniature figures from their original context, placing them in a contemporary frame and reviving them in new circumstances, just as if we were testing our traditional ideas within the framework of contemporary life. It is in this way that Sharifi engages with contemporary issues as a traditional miniaturist artist. ART Dâ€™Ă‰GYPTE
Mohamed Abou El Naga In the works of the Egyptian artist Mohamed Abou El Naga (b. 1960), we see a variety of experimental approaches, exemplifying the contemporary artist who is in a constant state of searching. His work has included the idea of oriental heritage through several experiments such as Reflections, Iranian Carpet, Book of Secrets, Orientalism and Kama Sutra. He has stated that he is looking for contemporary versions through the history of art, contemplating formulas capable of sustaining his preoccupations as a contemporary artist looking at the triple taboo of sex, power and religion. 88
In his practice, he is not satisfied by the neutral, quiet surface that moves him from one state of stillness to another; rather, he tends to increase the coefficient of confusion, so that the process of discovery becomes more exciting and attractive. His pieces abandon the decorative, preferring to examine the chaotic, the give and take of open-ended questions and incomplete answers. In one of his experiments, he introduces photographic shards of Oriental and Islamic manuscripts that may contain arithmetic equations, magic symbols, drawings, or horizontal, vertical and oblique scripts that take on a visual rhythm that moves like cells of microorganisms growing in many directions. Sometimes, we find Arabic writings on quiet backgrounds that we can only dimly make out. These words mingle with the abstract surface, celebrating the breath of history and the accumulation of the effects of time. The artist covers his surfaces with transparent and hand-treated paper chips to indicate age and decay, letting the effects of spotting, abrasion, deletion, and addition work on the entire surface to create a common history with the abstract backgrounds. He conjures up a new history and unites it with the history of his artistic work, traversing the journey of its creation with visible pleasure. NOTHING VANISHES, EVERYTHING TRANSFORMS
Abou El Naga uses handmade paper that is still alive with the breath of nature and incorporates photographic images that instil his work with an inspirational dimension, encouraging us to revisit the piece from a different perspective: trying to connect that carefully selected photographic element with the new connotations that have drowned it in dimensions unconnected to its historical reality. Despite these materials having disparate uses in reality, they come together in a new life through the power of the artist to unite and connect. The works of Abou El Naga present us with a new paradigm of Islamic art, conveyed through an indeterminate, blurred state and a burst of vague sensations presented by the artist. Although linked to some historical and heritage elements, it is extracted from it and placed within a fresh context, opening a way to a new flow of images (Figs. 5 & 6). Fig. 5: Mohamed Abou El Naga Untitled, date unknown Mixed media on paper Image courtesy of the artist
It is through examples such as these and others that we come to understand the saying ‘art is born out of art’.
Fig. 6: (Inset) Detail from the Kama Sutra Image courtesy of the author ART D’ÉGYPTE
Hamed Abdalla: Hieroglyphs, Talismans and Tattooed Memory
In Egypt, during the period between the late 1920s and the late 1930s, visual art convention held that a work of art must consist of a canvas depicting a rustic landscape […] or a portrait of a historical subject commissioned by members of the ruling powers […] The furthest this movement got in practice was to mimic the European Impressionist school […] without taking on board the insurrectionary nature of the French Impressionist school, its optical explosion and fragmentation […] In sharp contrast to this austere artistic climate (one can think of Youssef Kamel and his followers), along came Hamed Abdalla to buck the trend. He did not arrive from out of nowhere, as Egypt had already witnessed a potent Expressionist movement among the Armenian artists and many of the European artists in Cairo and Alexandria. Abdalla had therefore been developing under the auspices of a modernist movement that celebrated the language of form, liberated colour from the shackles in which it had previously been confined, broke down the apparent stability of nature, and disassembled elements of reality only to put them back together again from scratch according to a different parallel vision.
This quote by Ezzedine Naguib, a renowned Egyptian art critic who was a close friend of Hamed Abdalla (1917-1985), sheds light on his emergence in a local context. It gives us the right background in order to move forward, through the 1950s, when Abdalla’s path became international, in a hectic journey of worldwide exhibitions; and the 1960s when his general artistic research caused his expressionist roots to deviate into an experiment with words, letters and post-calligraphic painting. A self-taught artist from a modest NOTHING VANISHES, EVERYTHING TRANSFORMS
peasant family from Upper Egypt, who rose to prominence early in his career, Abdalla exhibited at the Cairo Museum of Modern Art as soon as 1949, in Paris in 1950 and in London in 1951. Thanks to his family and estate, the recent publication of his archives (Hamed Abdalla: Arabécédaire, Paris, Zamân Books, 2018) allowed for a general reassessment, not only of how transformative his work has been for a whole generation of Arab artists but also of how he offered an incredible resource for artistic knowledge, beyond the traditional categories of East and West, creating a new visual and political language. Abdalla had a very strong conceptual resistance to any form of Orientalism. The language that he referred to as ‘Letterist expressionism’ is what we wish to reinterpret here as the ‘talismanic modernism’ of Hamed Abdalla, the epitome of Arab cosmopolitanism. 91
Hamed Abdalla invented—and never stopped using—many ways of extending the power of writing to the power of the image (and vice versa), instead of juxtaposing or separating them, as was done by some orthodox modernists who were in love with purity and minimalism, or by those who fetishized either the image or the text. His unlimited repertoire of mobile signs, spirit words and other talismans were encompassed by the invention of what he called the ‘creative word’ (or mot-formé in French, as he would say); or by the unity of original meaning in a system he developed in the manner of a scribe-alchemist, creating a half-scriptural, half-anthropomorphic alphabet. It was as if the sacred message of (calligraphic) writing were concealed or nestled (in the most erotic sense of the term) in the speculative, hallucinatory contours of a body dancing, praying, mourning or rejoicing in the effusions of colours and rhythms of the material. The profane body of a dancing child or drunken individual (or even of a bent-over peasant or a couple making love) joins its contortions to the Arabic letter like a fingerprint, engraving and suspending the meaning at the same time. Abdalla’s alphabet is also related to a bestiary worthy of writers like Jorge Luis Borges and Italo Calvino, who wanted to break down limits on language (to the point of mysticism), while bringing together encyclopaedic knowledge, combining a taste for nomenclature with a taste for ART D’ÉGYPTE
collections (or series). In this sense, words are treated as moving bodies that retain and reveal meaning, which also moves, since the word-concept (the idea) is integrated into the mainly visual dynamic force field that Abdalla called the ‘creative word’. This shows with renewed eloquence how the painting of symbols or the art of the letter as practiced by Abdalla is close to the original collision of text and the body found in ancient memory games, which we could call, as Abdelkebir Khatibi did, the emanations of a ‘tattooed memory’, a memory that goes beyond the spoken word by turning writing into a rite of passage between the here and now and the hereafter, between desire and mourning, a bodily memory (we are even tempted to say that Abdalla created a kind of Kama Sutra of the Arabic language). The Egyptian painter seems to be reflected perfectly in the words of the Moroccan writer, as if the two had known each other well,
I wrote, an act without despair that was meant to conquer my sleep, my wandering. I wrote because it was the only way to disappear from the world, to cut myself off from chaos, to accustom myself to solitude. I believed in the destiny of the dead, so why not unite with the cycle of my eternity?  If Abdalla said, ‘I painted ...’ as Khatibi said, ‘I wrote ...’, it would not be so much an analogy between the painted image and the literary text than an analogy between the act of painting and the act of writing. In both cases, there is the same desire to find a higher consciousness amidst the drifting of the mind and the passage of time, to make oneself the tattoo artist or witness of a collective memory that lies under our feet and would be like the symbol of the separation between a ‘me-body’ and a ‘me-word’. Imagine Abdalla having exactly the same dream as Khatibi, ‘I dreamed the other night that my body was words’. There is no more dazzling equivalent in the work of the painter/tattoo artist than his monument to dreaming and wandering, al-Sharida, a word that can be translated as ‘lost’ (in the sense of ‘lost in thought’) or NOTHING VANISHES, EVERYTHING TRANSFORMS
escaped’ (in the feminine), an emblematic work from 1966 recently acquired by the Tate Modern, London (Fig. 1).
Fig. 1: Hamed Abdalla Al-Sharida (The Lost One), 1966 Mixed media, wooden relief on isorel, 116 x 89 cm Collection of the Tate Modern, London
This imposing work with an outstanding conception consists of a system of wooden bas-reliefs with an architectural stature that allows the letters of the word ‘AL-SHARIDA’ to be arranged like a dismembered body or a couple whose bodies are entwined (or sitting on each other), as Abdalla often suggested in his works. AlSharida is a fine example of this research on the hybrid and the third sense, beyond the visual form and the form of language. It is even ART D’ÉGYPTE
more evident here since the wandering of the spirit refers to what we do as readers/interpreters looking at the painting: we recognise the word written out ‘in full’ while letting ourselves wander through untold, unpredictable ramifications, as if the moment when we read the word and the moment when it escapes us (the moment when the letters seem to let go of each other or break free of their own meaning) were basically the same. For Abdalla, the only meaning is nomadic, like human nomadism, beginning with his own discontinuous journey across Africa and Europe. Al-Sharida dates from 1966, when the artist left Copenhagen for Paris, a turning point marked by the return to forms even more ingrained in Egyptian and Arabic identity. Edouard al-Kharrat, in a remarkable text on Abdalla, was the first to speak about them as ‘Arabic hieroglyphics’, observing with keen insight the ‘expressionist treatment of Letterism ... the dynamics of the letters, their inner movement and the incessant waves of their exuberance’. Amongst the collection of symbols invented by Abdalla is an exact double of the prostrate figure: the figure of the fellah, the peasant whose freedom is attached to his land yet threatened by the expropriation of that land. Abdalla starting using this figure in the Egyptian years (the 1940s). With his arms thrown up in the air, like a letter seeking its destination, or, more precisely, the crescent of the character lam-alef stretching up towards its silent accent, Abdalla’s fellah is a symbol of resistance, revolt, insurrection—he is like the closed fist of the prostrate body, which suddenly opens (Fig.2). Again, language and image are never completely separated; they come together in the search for a third space, an area of recognition of symbols not identified by purely encyclopaedic knowledge. Abdalla’s language is inspired by the architecture, calligraphy and miniatures of the so-called Islamic tradition as well as by Persian, Chinese, African and European traditions, which he first confronted, almost without realising it, in the 1940s. Above all, Fig. 2: however, to completely free himself of distinctions between abstract Hamed Abdalla Amal (Hope/Le Paysan Éloquent), 1953 and figurative, geometrics and symbolism, he takes even more liberties in layering the painting space and the writing space, Gouache on paper, 41 x 27 cm i.e., the space of projection and of inscription. Courtesy of the Abdalla Estate NOTHING VANISHES, EVERYTHING TRANSFORMS
Abdalla’s attraction to the concept of the talisman is related to this idea of a posteriori knowledge (as opposed to preconceived knowledge) and also to the analogy between the shape of the painting and the structure of a cartouche in which a name (divine or secular) is inscribed. He used this concept—at once numerological, ritual and chromatic—as a title for an ensemble of works and suggested it in all his work as of the 1950s, especially when he finally stopped figuratively representing the fellah and other humans (Figs. 3 & 4). As crude and childish as those figures from the Egyptian period seem, Abdalla was deconstructing the figure like a puppeteer frantically manipulating his marionettes. With the symbol of the talisman, he gradually moved away from this chapter to follow the Letterist ‘Arabic hieroglyphics’, an adventure that was at once esoteric and erudite, speculative and narrative, like a sequence of numbers that we are asked to recognise and interpret rather than read or just contemplate.
Reworked extract from Montazami, M., ‘Hamed Abdalla: Talismanic Modernism’, Hamed Abdalla: Arabécédaire, Zamân Books, 2018, published to accompany the eponymous exhibition at The Mosaic Rooms, London, 13 April-23 June 2018. 95
Notes  Naguib, E., ‘Hamed Abdalla, Eternal Traveller’, Hamed Abdalla: Arabécédaire, Paris, Fig. 3: Hamed Abdalla Al-Horreya (Liberty), 1968 Spray on carton, 46 x 27 cm Courtesy of the Abdalla Estate.
Zamân Books, 2018.  Khatibi, A., La Mémoire tatouée, El-Jadida, Okad, 2007 (1979), p. 87. Abdalla and Khatibi did not know each other either personally or through their work, but a comparative analysis shows that they were driven by the same meditation on the relationship
between marginality and universality, to the point of creating a path of initiation. Fig. 4: Hamed Abdalla  Ibid, p. 79. Madness, 1975 Acrylic on crumpled paper, 100 x 81 cm Courtesy of the Abdalla Estate  Al-Kharrat. E., ‘Hamed Abdalla, l’artiste du monumentalisme’, Al-Hayat, 29 July 1994. ART D’ÉGYPTE
The Case of Mahmoud Saïd, Father of Modern Egyptian Painting: Preserving Egypt’s ‘Internal Light’ and Re-interpreting Egyptian Cultural Heritage What I am looking for is radiance rather than light. What I want is internal light, not surface light, that blazing and deep light of some of the Limoges enamel works that can be found in the Cluny museum, or in the stained-glass windows of the Chartres cathedral; or the one in Barcelona. Surface light pleases for a minute or an hour while internal light captivates slowly, but once it appears, it imprisons us, it possesses us.
Mahmoud Saïd writing to Pierre Beppi-Martin in a letter dated December 1927 (Safarkhan Gallery/Sherwet Shafei Archives, Cairo). 96
Born in Alexandria in 1897, Mahmoud Saïd was brought up in a cosmopolitan aristocratic society, in one of civilization’s oldest countries, overwhelmed by its rich cultural heritage, and yet in a new-born nation still ‘in the making’. He was directly linked to Egypt’s royal circle, as one of his nieces, Safinaz Zulficar (1921-1988), would become Queen Farida in 1938 after marrying King Farouk (1920-1965). Mahmoud Saïd’s father, Mohamed Saïd Pasha (18631928), was Egypt’s prime minister (1910-1914; 1919), under the British protectorate. Mahmoud Saïd therefore found himself a first-hand witness to all the drastic political and cultural changes sweeping through Egypt accompanied by a growing sense of national identity. Mohamed Ali (1769-1849) had attempted to break the chain of almost 2,000 years of multi-ethnic invasions by liberating Egypt from Napoleon’s French troops, following their conquest in 1798. He challenged Ottoman sovereignty and coerced Sultan Mahmud II to recognize him as wali of Egypt in 1805, laying the foundations for the Alawiyya dynasty that lasted until the 1952 revolution. His actions paved the road towards nationalism and modernization for the Egyptian people through his political, economic and cultural reforms. In 1826, he sent Egyptian scholar Refa‘a al-Tahtawi (18011873) to study Western culture, sciences and educational methods in NOTHING VANISHES, EVERYTHING TRANSFORMS
Paris, Upon his return, al-Tahtawi published a book entitled Takhlis al-Ibriz fi Talkhis Bariz where he presents Europe from a Muslim point of view and discusses how Egypt and the Muslim diaspora can learn from Western society whilst preserving their core Islamic values. While Mohamed Ali arguably sparked the development of Egypt into a modern nation, al-Tahtawi is commonly seen as the pioneer of the so-called al-Nahda. Translated as ‘the awakening’ or ‘renaissance’, al-Nahda refers to a cultural renaissance that swept first through Egypt in the late nineteenth and early twentieth centuries, and then spread to other Arab countries such as Lebanon and Syria. Concurrently to this intellectual revolution, the Mohamed Ali dynasty pursued its founder’s military ambitions, but it was only on 28 February 1922 that the country gained nominal independence from the British as a result of the blood-drenched protests and tedious negotiations of 1919, led by the Wafd, the nationalistic party headed by Egyptian politician Saad Zaghloul (1859-1927). The 1922 Egyptian declaration of independence was only nominal, and, in reality, the British remained the puppeteers behind Egypt’s foreign, military and communications policies. The 1920s and 1930s also saw the emergence of a new Egyptian ideology, known as neo-Pharaonism, emanating from the accumulation of these historical and cultural events. This philosophy was epitomized by Mahmoud Mokhtar (1891-1934), Mahmoud Saïd’s counterpart in sculpture, in his graceful and monumental works, the most iconic being the imposing sculpture at the entrance of Cairo University, entitled Egypt’s Awakening (1919-1928). It is amidst this wave of incidents and influences and at the peak of al-Nahda that Mahmoud Saïd arrived on the art scene, at the time dominated mostly by Western expatriate artists. Saïd’s education was divided between four prestigious private schools in Egypt as well as at the hands of private tutors such as Italian artists Amelia Da Forno Casonato (1878-1969) and Arturo Zanieri (1870-1955). This first encounter with European art, through the agency of his Italian professors, proved to be particularly influential on Saïd, as witnessed by some of his earliest known works executed with a highly realistic and naturalistic approach. ART D’ÉGYPTE
To comply with his family’s wishes, Mahmoud Saïd studied law and obtained his degree from Cairo’s French Law School in 1919. He then took the initiative of travelling to Paris (1919-1921), attending free drawing classes at the Académie de La Grande Chaumière, as well as pursuing his artistic training in the cosmopolitan environment of the renowned Académie Julian. These art courses put him at the epicentre of the bubbling Parisian art scene and led him to make frequent visits to the Louvre, where he learned the canons of Western art from studying the museum’s European treasures.
When Mahmoud Saïd came back to Egypt after concluding his Parisian stay with a European tour, he took the position of deputy district prosecutor at the Mansoura Mixed Court in 1922. Saïd was later appointed judge at the Court of Appeals in Alexandria and only retired from his legal career in 1947; yet he always continued to paint in his spare time. In the late 1920s, he was part of an active group of artists, both Egyptian and foreign, led by Mahmoud Mokhtar under the name La Chimère, founded in 1927. Saïd was therefore on the frontline of the Egyptian art scene, surrounded by a vibrant and cosmopolitan artistic circle. To some extent, his encounter with ‘expatriate’ Western art in Alexandria stimulated a visual dialogue between his work and that of the Western artists living in Cairo or Alexandria, the likes of Beppi-Martin, Aristomenis Angelopoulos, Charles Boeglin and Giuseppe Sebasti. Consequently, hints of Western art are present throughout Saïd’s oeuvre in various ways, yet they are never obvious nor are they mere imitations, because they are complex, subtle and eclectic. Art historians have discussed at length how learning from Western art was important and necessary for the twentieth-century Egyptian artist as a stepping-stone to forming his own visual language. This is highlighted by Nada Shabout who writes that ‘it was a means of liberating themselves from a restrictive, stagnant tradition’. This is, in many respects, what Mahmoud Saïd achieved and it may be one of the reasons why he has been identified as one of the founding fathers of Egyptian modern art, alongside painter Mohamed Naghi NOTHING VANISHES, EVERYTHING TRANSFORMS
and sculptor Mahmoud Mokhtar. Saïd’s allusions to Western aesthetics and his re-interpretation of them show how his firsthand encyclopaedic knowledge of Western art through his travels and his relationship with many foreign artists did not impede his vision but rather prompted him to achieve what he sought. In the 1927 letter to Beppi-Martin quoted above, it appears that Saïd wanted to grasp the intangible, a ‘mysterious poetry’, or a sort of ‘internal light’ deeply embedded in Egypt’s cultural heritage. What he visited and admired throughout his European travels seems to have been one of the main catalysts that paradoxically made him both reach out to European art and distance himself from it, in his attempt to plumb the depths of his identity and capture the essence of Egypt’s people, culture and history.
Fig. 1: Mahmoud Saïd Bergère à Alamein, 1959 Oil on panel 49 x 77.5 cm Private collection ©Christie’s Images Ltd., 2014
Many times, Saïd used European aesthetics to capture the essence of his sitters and his own feelings and emotions towards them, yet he also combined them with ancient Egyptian art to depict the quintessentially Egyptian nature of a daily rural scene, as illustrated by his 1959 painting Bergères à Alamein (Fig. 1). A testament to the traditional Bedouin way of life, this work also pays tribute to the Mediterranean town of al-Alamein, which was then un-spoilt ART D’ÉGYPTE
by civilization yet scarred by war. Although the Second World War had spared Egypt, al-Alamein was the exception as it hosted two famous battles between Axis and Allied troops in 1942. The Allied victory in the second battle turned the tide of the war and diminished the Axis threat looming over Egypt and the Suez Canal. With these historical references in mind and through its breathtaking seascape, Saïd glorifies and celebrates al-Alamein’s true Egyptian character, which survived several occupations over the past centuries. The bergère or shepherdess embodies one of Saïd’s recurring subjects, the Egyptian fellaha or peasant. The painter pays homage to the shepherdess by placing her on the donkey’s back, on top of the hill, proudly dominating the entire scene. Wearing a fiery red dress and draped in a deep blue cloak, she almost appears like a noblewoman. Her majestic pose and her stoic profile echo Renaissance portraits of high-ranking sitters, yet at the same time they resonate with the princely figures from the Egyptian frescoes decorating Tutankhamen’s tomb. By giving his bergère these social and historical connotations, Saïd seeks to emphasize and praise her Egyptian identity and heritage, as she proudly looks out over the Mediterranean. The donkey, another of his signature motifs, further highlights this traditional Egyptian character, having long been one of the most common beasts of burden in Egypt and still frequently used to pull carts in some villages. Donkeys also represent humility and innocence—as depicted throughout medieval Christian art in which Jesus rides a donkey—as well as retaining their symbolic value as faithful companions to human beings and active witnesses to people’s daily lives throughout the centuries. Stripping the scene bare of any superfluous detail, Saïd further glorifies Egyptian identity and civilization by bathing Bergères à Alamein in almost blinding sunlight. He hence succeeded in capturing the ‘radiance’ and the ‘internal light’ described in his 1927 letter to Beppi-Martin. The intrinsic luminosity of the scene seems to encapsulate and immortalize Egypt’s glory, just as it enhances the stillness and lyricism of the whole scene. The perfectly balanced triangular composition hints of the indestructible pyramids, symbols of the NOTHING VANISHES, EVERYTHING TRANSFORMS
glorious golden age of Egyptian civilization. By putting a halt to the passing of time, Saïd proves that the authentic Egyptian character and the inner beauty of his people and his homeland have and will prevail eternally, despite centuries of foreign domination. Through this one of many examples in Saïd’s oeuvre, and despite a radical change on Egypt’s art scene that ultimately paved the way for the creation of Egyptian modern art, it is clear that indeed, ‘nothing vanishes, everything transforms’, or rather is transformed. Saïd preserves Egypt’s ‘internal light’ and hints at his country’s cultural heritage yet offers a completely innovative approach in terms of artistic expression, by using Western art as a steppingstone, to formulating his own modern visual language. Without ever ignoring his Egyptian soul, Mahmoud Saïd, along with Mohamed Naghi, Mahmoud Mokhtar and other Egyptian artists of the socalled ‘first generation’ of Egyptian modern artists, taught younger generations of artists that one cannot and should not ever lose sight of one’s roots; on the contrary, artists should emphasize them with their own visual means.
Extract from Didier-Hess, V., ‘Mahmoud Saïd’s Pioneering Dialogue with European Art’ in Didier-Hess, V. and Rashwan, H. (eds.), Mahmoud Saïd Catalogue Raisonné, vol. 1, Milan, 2016, pp. 120-143.
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THE MANIAL PALACE ART D’ÉGYPTE
NOTHING VANISHES, EVERYTHING TRANSFORMS
The Palace of Prince Mohamed Ali at Manial Dr Zahi Hawass
The Manial Palace of Prince Mohamed Ali Tewfik, son of Khedive Tewfik and younger brother of Khedive Abbas Hilmi II, is located on Rhoda Island opposite Cairo University’s Faculty of Medicine. The prince chose this location in 1901 and construction started soon afterward. A large enclosure wall built in the style of a medieval castle surrounds the palace complex. Inside are a series of buildings, with the residence area being the oldest of these. It is built on two levels connected by an unusual staircase. Inside are a salon, a dining room, an office, a library, and bedrooms built in a high fanciful tower. Every room is decorated in a different style. The reception building, also laid out on two levels, served for official engagements and for greeting guests. There is one reception hall on the lower level and two grand halls designed in the Moroccan style with mirrors and ceramic tiles covering the walls on the upper level. The audience hall also has two storeys. On the ground floor is a great hall with carved wooden chairs. The walls are decorated with painted portraits of members of the Mohamed Ali dynasty in addition to some landscapes. The upper level was reserved for winter meetings and is filled with objects belonging to prince Ilhami Pasha, grandfather of Prince Mohamed Ali Tewfik. The most spectacular hall is the ‘Golden Hall’, sometimes referred to as the ‘Trusteeship Hall’. The prince used this for official festivals; today, it is used for important governmental receptions, dinners and other special events. The walls and ceilings are decorated with gilded geometrical and floral motifs, and it is often considered a masterpiece of design and beauty. The guard tower, which has a distinctly Moroccan flavour, looks out over the residence and the stables, which once housed Arabian horses. There is a small jewel of a mosque, which consists of two raised podiums: the eastern one is roofed by a small dome made of yellow glass, while the western is decorated with painted sunrays. The walls of the mosque are covered with ceramic tiles inscribed with religious texts. It is currently open for prayer.
The residence hall Archival image The Manial Palace Collection
A hunting museum is attached to the palace through a long gallery located beside the northern wall. Here, you can see hunting implements and trophies that belonged to King Farouk I and Prince Youssef Kamal.
My Memories of Prince Mohamed Ali Tewfik
Prince Abbas Hilmi
Prince Mohamed Ali Tewfik had no sons, but he considered his nephew—my father and the son of Khedive Abbas Hilmi II—as his son and heir. When King Fuad died, his son Farouk was under age, and Prince Mohamed Ali was appointed head of the regency council. Years later, my father, Prince Mohamed Abdel Moneim, would head the regency council established when King Farouk abdicated. I remember the prince’s many visits to our home in Heliopolis. He was very elegant, well-mannered and tactful. He would always speak very respectfully to my mother, Princess Neslishah, in recognition of her position as a sultana and the granddaughter of the last Ottoman caliph and sultan.
I recall how he used to recite a du’aa every time he got out of his car and a different one when he got back in his car to leave. I remember the aroma of the perfume he used to wear and also his tarboosh, which he always wore at an angle. He used to have an Italian driver and inevitably chose the powerful Rolls Royce for the drive to Heliopolis because he considered this to be a long journey. For his daily visits to the Club Mohamed Ali, he preferred the Toppolino, the smallest car of its day, because he felt downtown was overcrowded. I visited the Manial Palace once with my mother, but only the harem; the prince felt I was too young to be allowed to join the men in the selamlik. Prince Mohamed Ali wrote many books in Arabic, French and English on topics such as Arabian horses, religion and his travels all over the world. He was well-known in many countries and was invited to visit Japan, England, France and Italy. Many prominent international figures also visited him at the Manial Palace. The Manial Palace complex is one of the most important of Prince Mohamed Ali Tewfik’s achievements. He created an endowment of 2,300 feddans in Kafr al-Sheikh to finance the museum, the palace and the gardens after his death, but these properties were seized as part of the agricultural reform programme after NOTHING VANISHES, EVERYTHING TRANSFORMS
the 1952 revolution. Today, the complex belongs to the Ministry of Antiquities. In order to maintain Prince Mohamed Ali’s vision and preserve the rare artefacts he collected during his lifetime, we established an association called Friends of the Manial Palace Museum to carry out cultural activities and to attract donations to support the museum and preserve our rich heritage. The complex houses some of the world’s most important collections of carpets, Arabic calligraphy, plates, clothing, silverware, and so on. These treasures are the legacy of Prince Mohamed Ali to the Egyptian people. Prince Mohamed Ali Tewfik Archival images The Manial Palace Collection
May God have mercy on his soul. It falls to us to preserve his heritage, his ideas and his noble principles. ART D’ÉGYPTE
NOTHING VANISHES, EVERYTHING TRANSFORMS
A Tour of the Manial Palace AND Museum
Walaa El-Din Badawy
The Patron Prince Throughout his life, Prince Mohamed Ali Tewfik (1875-1955) was enamoured by Islamic art and architecture. Born in Qubba Palace on 9 November 1875, he was the son of Khedive Mohamed Tewfik Pasha Ibn Ismail Pasha Ibn Ibrahim Pasha Ibn Mohamed Ali Pasha, founder of the reigning Alawiyya Dynasty, and the younger brother of Khedive Abbas Hilmi II. He was also the cousin of Farouk I, who would later become king of Egypt. His mother was Princess Emina Hanim Ilhami, the daughter of Ibrahim Ilhami Pasha Ibn Abbas Pasha I Ibn Tusun Pasha Ibn Mohamed Ali Pasha. Prince Mohamed Ali Tewfik had three sisters, Princess Nazli, who died in infancy of typhoid fever, Princess Khadijah and Princess Nemat Allah. Like his father before him, Khedive Tewfik was keenly interested in his sons’ education. Prince Abbas Hilmi and Prince Mohamed Ali started their studies in Egypt before leaving first to Switzerland, then to Austria where they attended the Theresian Academy in Vienna with other notables. Upon the death of their father, Khedive Tewfik, on 8 January 1892, the princes were forced to return to Egypt immediately for Abbas Hilmi to assume the throne. Prince Mohamed Ali held the title of crown prince for seven years until the birth of Prince Mohamed Abdel Moneim, the older son of Khedive Abbas Hilmi II. He would hold the same title twice more: Once for 15 years after the crowning of King Farouk I upon the death of King Fuad I in April 1936, and again briefly following the 1952 revolution after Farouk’s abdication. Prince Mohamed Ali died at the age of 80 on 18 March 1955 in exile in Lausanne, Switzerland. His body was returned for burial at the royal cemetery known now as Qubbat Afandina located in the Saharaa al-Mamalik area of Cairo. In addition to building the Manial Palace and Museum, Prince Mohamed Ali was famous for his vast knowledge of horse breeding and horticulture and his interest in both Eastern and Western music. He was also a traveller who documented his expeditions in diaries that are considered valuable records of the countries he visited. He always felt that knowledge is necessary for both nation and citizens and that it has no homeland and should be acquired wherever possible. He was passionate about Islamic art and monuments and considered both a great legacy that must be preserved and maintained as a clear manifestation of Egyptian civilization.
Prince Mohamed Ali Tewfik Archival image The Manial Palace Collection
The prince was instrumental in preserving many monuments and artefacts. He employed an entire team tasked with acquiring rare antiques for the palace and he would often rush to old Mamluk and ART D’ÉGYPTE
Ottoman houses on the verge of being demolished to rescue the valuable interiors and ornaments. Prince Mohamed Ali’s personality is reflected clearly in his palace. It is a unique building, much like its owner, who meticulously supervised every architectural detail and decorative element and filled it with his rare finds and with the treasures inherited from his ancestors.
The Manial Palace Complex
The Manial Palace complex is located in a charming area on the island of Manial al-Rhoda. The prince chose the land himself and purchased it from a foreign resident of Cairo. Building started in 1903 on the residence compound first, followed by other parts. It covers an area of 61,711 square metres with the buildings occupying 5,000 square metres. The garden area is 34,000 square metres, with 22,711 square metres of internal roads, paths and outbuildings. The palace is composed of several compounds or sarayat as well as other buildings. Let us take a tour of the most important ones.
Gateway into Manial Palace Image courtesy of Abdallah Dawestashy
The palace entrance combines different Islamic styles with the façade generally resembling those of Persian mosques and madrassas. Two towers on either side are built in the style of the minarets of the late Fatimid era. Three crescents and stars representing the Egyptian flag at the time are depicted in stone bas relief above the entrance. At the top there is a text that reads: ‘This palace was built by Prince Mohamed Ali, son of the late Khedive Mohamed Tewfik, to revive Islamic art and celebrate it. The architecture and ornamentation were created by his Highness the Prince. The execution was undertaken by Master Mohamed Afifi in the year AH 1348’.
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The Reception Saray Designed to receive guests visiting the prince, the reception saray is located above the main entrance and can be accessed through a door to its right. It consists of two storeys: The first has the ceremony room for receiving high-ranking officials, senior statesmen and ambassadors who wanted to extend their congratulations to the prince on state occasions. The reception room is through the ceremony room and has a door with the statement ‘life through faith’ written on it. In this room, the prince received senior figures who came to the palace to offer Friday prayers in the palace mosque. The second storey has the Syrian hall, which was socalled because its walls and ceilings are covered with wood carvings that were brought by the prince from the Azm Palace in Syria (b. AH 1081). The second hall is called the Moroccan hall. Its ceiling is decorated with star polygon-shaped mirrors and its walls are covered with Qashani tiles (also called Moroccan Zellige).
The Clock Tower
The clock tower The Manial Palace Collection
The clock tower lies between the reception saray and the mosque. It was constructed by the prince in the style of Andalusian and Moroccan towers, which were used for surveillance and to send messages to various officers of the state. At the top of the tower, there is a clock of the same design as the one placed by Khedive Abbas Hilmi II on the tower of the Egyptian railway station. The only difference between them lies in the hands of the clock, which the prince chose in the form of two serpents. ART D’ÉGYPTE
The fountain or sabil lies between the tower and the mosque, adjacent to the north wall of the palace. It was designed by the prince using the natural colours of the limestone and the sandstone to simple but stunning effect.
The Mosque The mosque, despite its small size, is an architectural gem lavished with particular attention by Prince Mohamed Ali. On either side of the entry, there are white marble plaques with black marble framework and writings. The mosqueâ€™s commemorative text is written on the right plaque, whereas the names of all those who participated in the calligraphy, carpentry, carpeting, tile works and building are written on the left plaque.
The Hunting Museum
The fountain Image courtesy of Abdallah Dawestashy
This museum consists of a long, modified passageway annexed to the east gate and overlooking the garden. The displays include butterflies; stuffed animals, birds and reptiles; and skulls and horns of gazelles, wildebeests, buffaloes and bighorn sheep; as well as trophies and other artefacts collected from the palaces and hunting lodges of King Farouk and Prince Youssef Kamal who loved hunting. This museum was opened to the public in
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1963, which means that it was annexed to the palace long after the death of the prince. Although distinct in style from the other sections of the palace, its contents attract many visitors and in particular schoolchildren and students.
The Residence Saray The residence saray is the oldest building in the palace. It consists of two storeys and has a tower that originally overlooked the sights of Cairo and Giza before the buildings surrounding the palace overwhelmed it. It also has a large roof where the prince would often sit with his wife Princess Alice on charming summer nights. The commemorative plaque, which is located to the left of the palace elevator and made of white and black marble, is the oldest plaque in the palace and it reads, ‘This palace was constructed by His Majesty, Prince Mohamed Ali Pasha in AH 1321’.
Display in the hunting museum Image courtesy of Abdallah Dawestashy
The saray door is made of wood armoured with oxidized copper. It is designed in the Mamluk style and decorated with star polygons featuring semi-cylinders of different sizes with ‘Made in Egypt’ inscribed on each one. All the door ornaments have decorative arabesque patterns inlaid with silver and gold. The door also has ribbons made of the same metal. ART D’ÉGYPTE
The first storey is quite incredible, with a fountain lobby surrounded by several rooms decorated with the best of Islamic art, including a mother-of-pearl room, a dining room and the middle mirror room, which leads on to further rooms and halls including the harem room, office and the princeâ€™s library, called the blue salon. The staircase leading to the second story is made of fine wood with a bannister of carved Turkish walnut inlaid with mother-of-pearl and ivory in floral patterns. The second floor features the jewellery room, the arabesque room, the bedrooms of the prince and his French wife Alice, as well as the study where the prince used to write his diaries.
The Throne Saray No one knows for sure the reason why Prince Mohamed Ali constructed this building. In spite of being named crown prince on three separate occasions, the prince never ascended to the throne. Yet it appears that he constructed the throne saray to remind the rest of the Mohamed Ali dynasty of his right to rule after his father and brother. What makes this assumption very likely is that he placed portraits of all the past rulers of Egypt on the walls, starting with his namesake Mohamed Ali Pasha, the founder of the dynasty, and ending with his brother, Abbas Hilmi II. He effectively ignored the rulers who followed Abbas Hilmi II, including his uncle, Sultan Hussein Kamel, his other uncle, King Fuad, and his cousin, King Farouk, even though he was their contemporary. The bedroom of Emina Hanim Ilhami Image courtesy of Abdallah Dawestashy
The throne saray is designed in the Ottoman style called koshk (or kiosk), which marked many of the buildings constructed along
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the Bosphorus, as well as some of the buildings erected inside the Citadel in the era of Mohamed Ali Pasha. The first floor of the saray features the throne room, while the second was dedicated by the prince to his mother Emina Hanim Ilhami whose nickname was Umm al-Muhsinin. She lived there for several years until her death in 1931. The staircase leading to this floor ends with a simple wooden door and a small corridor. The upper storey includes a rare room that is called the Aubusson room with walls completely covered in French Aubusson tapestries decorated with Egyptian landscapes such as the Pyramids, the Nile, Upper Egypt and so on. Another room is dedicated to the possessions of Prince Ilhami Pasha, which Prince Mohamed Ali inherited from his mother. All the furnishings of this room were made in France including a set of gilded sofas and chairs covered with silk fabric and decorated with eighteenth-century French landscapes. The two winter rooms face the east and overlook the small branch of the Nile River. The first has an ornate ceiling and walls decorated in gilded tiles in architectural and geometric designs that follow the Turkish rococo style. The second room was the bedroom of the prince’s mother and has a silver decorated bed which is considered one of the rarest antiques in the palace. 115
The Golden Hall
The ‘Golden Hall’ Image courtesy of Abdallah Dawestashy
Located close to the second entrance and next to the western wall, the ‘Golden Hall’, with its gilded walls and ceiling, is one the palace’s most stunning rooms and considered a work of art in its own right. The hall lies at the top of a marble staircase supported by elegant columns and has glass windows that overlook the landing. The door that leads to the hall is decorated with gilded wood and is flanked by columns carrying an ornament inside which there is a shimmering decorative sun with Prince Mohamed ART D’ÉGYPTE
Ali’s tughra in its centre. The hall is divided into a main room, three iwans and two side rooms. The ceiling of the main hall looks like a magnificent carpet in the style known as ‘Holbein’. In the middle of the ceiling is a large oval medallion decorated with ornaments in the form of floral leaves with a rare chandelier suspended from its centre. This three-tiered, French baccarat crystal chandelier with a diameter of 250 cm was made especially for this hall and has arms, arcs and crystal finials. The bottom of the chandelier ends with a large reversed bulb decorated with floral crystal patterns and lights. Transparent, coloured crystal decorations are also mounted on the arms.
The rest of the ceiling is decorated with a large rosette composed of diamond shapes as well as other floral ornaments. On either side of the room, there is a drawing of two rectangular carpets decorated with the same decorations and surrounded by bell-shaped frames. Stained glass windows encircle the room. They are decorated with wooden inlays, a style unique to the palace. Lines of poetry from al-Burda, al-Busiri’s famous poem praising the Prophet, decorate the walls. Some lines of poetry are written inside green rectangles while others are written in green with floral motifs. There are also lines of poetry praising the prince and the palace written in the same style.
The Private Museum The private museum is located on the south side of the palace. It consists of 15 halls, a courtyard and a small garden. The entrance is topped by a wooden pergola decorated with garden and architectural ornaments mounted on columns. The main door is huge and made of wood without any decorations, resembling the doors of medieval castles. It also has another small door for the entry of individuals. The main door is topped by large garden ornaments, the old Egyptian flag and a commemorative plaque, which reads, ‘This museum, which includes the most valuable collectibles and precious antiques, was built by Prince Mohamed Ali, the son of Mohamed Tewfik Pasha in 1938’. NOTHING VANISHES, EVERYTHING TRANSFORMS
The Palace Garden
The palace garden Archival image The Manial Palace Collection The palace garden today Image courtesy of Abdallah Dawestashy
The palace garden is a rare botanical museum and natural park in the bustling centre of Cairo. It attracts visitors who want to enjoy the beautiful nature and pure air alongside other entertainment and cultural activities. The prince collected many plants from different environments and adapted them to Egyptian soil and climate. These include cactus plants, which at one point encompassed 55 varietals. Many of these plants still exist today alongside the Indian fig trees (ficus), which were widespread in Egypt in the past but have now dwindled. This type of ficus is known for its rich, evergreen foliage. The garden also has many types of palm trees, including majestic royal palms with their pristine white trunks. It also boasts lemon, mango and guava trees as well as bamboo trees and various flowering and ornamental plants.â€ƒ ART Dâ€™Ă‰GYPTE
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There is an Egyptian saying: A letter is revealed by its address (algawab yiban min ‘inwanu). The significance of the Manial Palace is revealed by the foundation inscription above its main entrance. It states that the palace was founded by Mohamed Ali Pasha, the son of Khedive Tewfik Pasha to revive Islamic arts and glorify them ً (إجــال لهــا )إحيــاء للفنــون اإلســامية وand that the architecture and design of the building ( )هندســة البنــاء و زخرفتــهwere created by the master ( )المعلــمMohamed Afifi in AH 1348 (1929-1930). The palace, which took three decades to complete, was meant to convey an aesthetic message. Prince Mohamed Ali Tewfik was the regent before the coronation of his young cousin Farouk. His palace was an official residence with a ‘throne room’ and a private home for him and his French wife. Its superb garden, one of the gems of Cairo, had already been laid out in the nineteenth century by Ibrahim Pasha with imported trees to which the prince added more exotic plants collected during his many travels.
Framed marriage contract of Prince Mohamed Ali Tewfik Image courtesy of Abdallah Dawestashy
The message contained in the foundation inscription is about Islamic artistic tradition. However, the mention of the architect’s and designer’s name was not traditional, especially in Egypt where names of medieval builders or architects were rarely mentioned, and the occasional signatures of decorators did not occupy such a prominent place. Scholars of Islamic architecture are puzzled by the absence of any information regarding the individual or the team who designed the mosque-madrassa of Sultan Hassan, for example, which is an outstanding architectural masterpiece of the Mamluk period. Likewise, the name of the architect who designed the mosque of Mohamed Ali Pasha at the Citadel, completed in 1830, is not inscribed anywhere and his identity is still a matter of speculation. At the Manial Palace, however, in addition to the name of the master-builder and designer, the names of other craftsmen and workshops involved in its construction and decoration are listed on an inner panel near the entrance. These were the craftsmen with whom Prince Mohamed Ali was obviously proud to realize his artistic revival. ART D’ÉGYPTE
Another innovative feature of this palace is the hybrid character of its design. Its exterior combines Andalusian features with Cairene architecture of different periods alongside other elements. The portal is flanked with turrets recalling early Mamluk minarets; the clock tower, visible from a distance, is built in the Andalusian-Maghrebi style. The rooms of the residence display a bold fusion of European interior culture and design, with surface decoration of mixed Islamic origins. The layout is entirely Western with various dedicated spaces for ceremonial gatherings, dining and sitting rooms for formal and informal as well as private purposes, all illuminated by large windows. The Islamic decoration is displayed on large wall surfaces covered with neoOttoman tiles in the Iznik tradition, while the Mamluk style prevails in the wooden ceilings with muqarnas and geometrical patterns, the marble mosaics on the floors and walls, and the metal doors and lamps. Ceremonial rooms such as the one described as the ‘Throne Hall’ are designed in the late Ottoman baroque style with crystal chandeliers, mirrors and oil-painted portraits of members of the Mohamed Ali royal family with opulent gilded frames. Arabic inscriptions in masterly calligraphy run in bands along the walls where European-style paintings also hang.
The furniture combines a variety of styles depending on the function of each room: There are Ottoman sofas with kilims, carved wooden furniture inlaid with mother-of-pearl in the Mamluk-Ottoman style, gilded chairs in French-Ottoman baroque, and leather club chairs. Fine Persian carpets cover the floors and French porcelain and silverware are displayed alongside Mamluk-revival candlesticks made of silver-inlaid brass.
The ‘Golden Hall’ Image courtesy of Abdallah Dawestashy
The mosque, a separate building, has an interior in Mamluk and Ottoman style with tiles, inscriptions and carvings. A feature common to all artefacts displayed in the Manial palace is the remarkably high quality of their craftsmanship. The planning and designs of the decoration were executed with masterly skill that sometimes surpassed that of the medieval prototypes.
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The palace was not merely a museum of artefacts, but an aesthetic and comfortable residence designed to meet the needs of an aristocratic Egyptian family. It reflected the vision that emerged during the reign of Khedive Ismail almost half a century earlier among the Turkish-Egyptian elite of European education, to pursue a modern lifestyle while cultivating their cultural and artistic heritage. The notion of revival here does not imply mere imitation of old models or return to old fashions. Rather it is a novel interpretation and synthesis of traditional skills reflecting the taste of Egypt’s aristocracy at that time. This taste can be described as a kind of Egyptian Orientalism, which continued the revival movement that had already begun in the nineteenth century under European influence aiming at rescuing the architectural and artistic heritage of the Mamluk golden age. At that time, European Orientalist artists, architects and collectors were designing residences in Egypt and in their European homes in a fusion style that integrated the oriental decorative aesthetics that fascinated them. This same fascination motivated the design of Prince Mohamed Ali’s palace, perhaps as a reaction to the century before during which princely residences were built entirely in the European fashion.
The Aubusson room Image courtesy of Abdallah Dawestashy
At the time when the Manial Palace was built, there was a vivid debate among the intellectual elite about issues of identity between inherited and imported culture, tradition and modernity. The Egyptian writer, journalist and polemicist, Mohamed al-Muwaylihi, who died in 1930, described Egyptian society at that time in critical terms as neither Eastern nor Western, based on the Egyptians’ ignorance of their own heritage, their servility to European fashions while misunderstanding what European culture was about. He compared the absorption of European ideas by the Egyptians to a sieve that retained the trivialities but let the essentials escape. In contrast to this critical and pessimistic view, the Manial Palace is an aristocratic interpretation of the ambiguous culture of that time, expressing the delight and charm of a combined Eastern and Western lifestyle. ART D’ÉGYPTE
A Place of Vitality
Since the beginning of the history of mankind, Egypt has been accumulating in its fertile soil the testimonies of the civilizations to which it has given birth, or which have shone with unparalleled splendour. The pyramid of Djoser is there to remind us that at the time when Europe and America were still covered with forests with precarious peoples wandering in search of light, a civilization was born on the banks of the Nile. For three thousand years, it ceaselessly erected statues of its gods and sovereigns while covering the walls of its temples with writings. Then the wind of history turned, and the empire of Alexander seized Egypt, but it is thanks to Alexandria, the city he built, that Greek thought became universal all over the world. It was in the Jewish communities of Alexandria that the Bible was first translated into Greek. It is at Alexandria, as well as at Antioch, and at Constantinople, that the foundations of Christianity were laid. When, finally, the armies of Islam opened vast territories to the new religion, it was Egypt that quickly became one of the most important centres of knowledge. The foundations for Cairo were laid at the time, and it is there that one can still find the testimonies of the glorious centuries of the Fatimid, Ayyubid, and Mamluk kingdoms. All these strata of human history have left behind the many monuments that make Egyptâ€™s glory and hold the eyes of men from all parts of the world. Then in the nineteenth century, when after a long slumber Egypt was reborn under the leadership of Mohamed Ali and his descendants, Egypt again became home to sumptuous buildings and palaces. Among these is the Manial Palace built on the island of Rhoda in the early nineteenth century by Prince Mohamed Ali Tewfik. Designed in a neo-Islamic style inspired by Fatimid and Mamluk architecture and furnished with a mix of Ottoman, Moroccan, Persian, Syrian and rococo styles, the grandeur of the Manial Palace is a testament to the desire for eclectic syncretism that characterized this era. As soon as the palace was finished, Mohamed Ali Tewfik thought that it should become a museum and, after a period when it was used only for touristic purposes, it is again today under the jurisdiction of the Ministry of Antiquities.
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But what would this incomparable heritage be if it was nothing more than a museum? If this entire marvellous heritage was nothing more than a commercial venue managed by indifferent people? What would be the fate of this people be if they thought they could build a future by ignoring their unique heritage?
The door to the ‘Golden Hall’ Image courtesy of Abdallah Dawestashy
Today, whatever the conditions across the country, there is a wonderful vitality that animates and permeates it. It is here at the Manial Palace that we can best appreciate it. We can see here better than elsewhere that this creation of a new country, of a youth which, in spite of all the obstacles, has regained its confidence, resting on the solid base of a fertile past, but at the same time, embracing the world and fully part of it. This Egypt, young, creative, open to the world and confident in itself, as in all the great eras of its history, is best seen at the Manial Palace, a place emblematic both of its past and its future. ART D’ÉGYPTE
NOTHING VANISHES, EVERYTHING TRANSFORMS
A Celebration of Arts and Crafts
Dr Omniya Abdel Barr
I still remember my daily drive to nursery school from Giza to Garden City, where we had to cross two bridges and drive along thick, high walls that resembled a medieval fortress. The walls looked old and terrifying and my mother told me, ‘this is the palace of Prince Mohamed Ali’. Today the palace is officially known by its location, the Manial Palace, although Cairenes still refer to it by the name of its founder. Prince Mohamed Ali (1875-1955) was born at the Qubba Palace, one of the royal palaces built by his grandfather Khedive Ismail (r. 1863-1879), on the 11th of Shawwal, AH 1292 (9 November 1875). He is the son of Khedive Tewfik (r. 1879-1892) and the younger brother of Khedive Abbas Hilmi II (r. 1892-1914). His mother was Emina Hanim Ilhami (1858-1931), known to Cairenes as Umm al-Muhsinin in recognition for her many charitable works. Prince Mohamed Ali’s passion for traditional art and architecture must have been influenced by his mother, who bestowed the city with one of its finest and most intricately designed sabils on the Saliba Street. Emina Hanim had very strong influences over her sons’ education and later their political careers. In his memoirs, the prince underlines the major role she played in the revival of traditional arts and crafts. To create some balance between the architectural styles invading from Europe versus the ones from Cairo, she decided to establish technical schools focusing on traditional arts and crafts, such as al-Ilhamiyya School which opened in Abbassiyya in 1911. She also commissioned the manufacturing of mosque lamps bearing the name of Khedive Abbas Hilmi II inscribed within blazons as per the Mamluk style. These mosque lamps used to adorn the interior of the royal mosque of al-Rifai until last year, when they were removed following consecutive thefts. They were also used in mosques restored by the Comité de conservation des monuments de l’art arabe during the reign of her son.
The entrance hall of the residential palace. The bronze door and marble work are inspired by the art of the Mamluks in Cairo. Image courtesy of the author.
The Comité was created with a special decree by Khedive Tewfik in December 1881—six years after Prince Mohamed Ali was born—to save, protect and restore the Islamic heritage of Cairo and to establish a museum for Arab art. Growing up with parents who had such love and respect for Cairo’s architectural heritage undoubtedly shaped the ART D’ÉGYPTE
prince’s first appreciation of art and architecture. At the time, Cairo was undergoing major urban and architectural transformations and the prince witnessed first-hand the rescue operations of its medieval centre, which holds the gems of Islamic architecture. Even though he never studied architecture academically, he would later acquire an excellent working knowledge of its professional techniques by designing and supervising the construction of his palace.
The prince initially resided in Downtown Cairo but at the turn of the twentieth century, he decided to abandon the busy streets of the centre and take refuge on al-Rhoda Island, which provided space and tranquillity. Al-Rhoda is considered Cairo’s oldest island. On its southern tip, stands the city’s earliest monument, the Nilometer, built in AD 861 by the Abbasid caliph al-Mutawakkil. In the thirteenth century, the Ayyubid sultan al-Salih Nijm al-Din Ayyub (r. 12401249) decided to shift the seat of power from the Citadel of Salah al-Din to the one he built on this island. Interesting to note that his Mamluks would later be known as the Bahri Mamluks in reference to al-Rhoda (bahri means ‘of the river’). Even though the citadel was praised for its architectural beauty, no trace has survived. The Bahri Mamluks reused its building material to erect their own monuments in the heart of city. Given the Nile’s annual inundation, it is understandable that very few developments took place on the low-lying island in the following centuries. Most of the island’s urban development took place in the mid-nineteenth century. In 1851, Manastirly Pasha built a sumptuous palace on the premises of the Nilometer. This may have been the trigger that attracted other investors to the island. Members of the royal family and high-ranking elites started acquiring land, culminating in the arrival of Prince Mohamed Ali in 1903 to build a new palace, after purchasing the land from a Frenchman. I must have been ten when I first visited the Manial Palace. Thanks to my father, I was introduced to Cairo’s architectural heritage at a very early age. The palace intrigued me with its scattered buildings and its large garden. I vividly remember my first impression, ‘This is a place fit for a prince, or perhaps a king?’ It felt like an unfinished NOTHING VANISHES, EVERYTHING TRANSFORMS
story, especially when you visited the throne room, a hall still waiting for its crown. Back then, I couldn’t distinguish between the different architectural styles, nor could I interpret their meanings and complexities. Today, after having studied and worked on Cairo’s architectural heritage, I can tell which elements were inspired by Cairo and which were not, making my appreciation of the palace take a different turn. This is indeed an unusual place. It was not built solely as the residency of a royal, rather it was meant to convey powerful political messages and to celebrate traditional arts from around the Mediterranean. The construction of the Manial Palace, which stretched over four decades, must have been an adventurous and ambitious journey. Since the material published on the palace is very scarce and the information available often repetitive, I contacted Dr Amal Mahfouz, who has extensively researched the nineteenthand twentieth-century architecture of the Mohamed Ali dynasty. She explained how the prince’s main objective was to create a complex for the arts and a museum for the public to visit after his death as stated in the palace’s endowment deed. The prince initiated the construction when he was only 28 years old. The first two buildings erected (1903) were the selamlik (the reception saray annexed to the entrance) and the haremlik (the residential saray). The prince later added special chambers for his mother. The ground floor of the selamlik houses several reception halls to greet and receive visitors, while the upper floor is divided into halls that each represent a different architectural style such as the Syrian room and the Moroccan room. The walls are adorned with drawings and paintings of horses, the prince’s greatest passion. The haremlik is my favourite building, perhaps because it is influenced by Cairo’s Mamluk architecture with a mix of Ottoman effects. The entrance door is a copy of the bronze door of the funerary Khanqah of Sultan al-Zahir Barquq (b. 1384-1386) overlooking al-Mu‘izz street. It follows the very intricate geometrical patterns, which must have been a challenge to the craftsmen. The floors and walls of the ground floor are decorated with marble panels inspired by designs ART D’ÉGYPTE
still to be found in the mosque of Sultan al-Nasir Mohamed (b. 1318-1335) in the Citadel and the funerary mosque of Sultan alAshraf Barsbay (b. 1432) in the Northern Cemetery. The wooden staircase is a masterpiece of fine design and carving and the wooden ceilings are breathtaking with their decorative styles and vivid colours. The walls are covered in blue ceramic tiles decorated with tulips and cypress trees in the Ottoman style. Dr Mahfouz underlines that this mixing of styles is a rarity as it is very balanced and harmonious. You really wonder where to look when standing in the entrance hall of the haremlik and your gaze cannot miss seeing the massive oil portrait of Mohamed Ali Pasha (r. 18051848), placed in the centre of the wall leading to the upper floor. A reminder to every visitor of the strong links shared between the prince and the founder of the Egyptian monarchy.
The staircase of the residential palace showing the portrait of Mohamed Ali Pasha by Hedayat Image courtesy of Abdallah Dawestashy
The square clock tower, visible from the outside walls, was built next (1919-1930). It was later annexed to the mosque (1926-1933) as a stand-alone minaret. The tower-minaret is considered one of the finest and most original of the minarets built during the reign of the Mohamed Ali family. After completing the mosque, the prince built the palaceâ€™s main entrance. It was not a surprise that he selected to copy the doors of the mosque-madrassa of Sultan Hassan as the first element encountered by visitors. The original door is today placed in the mosque of al-Muâ€™ayyad Shaykh and it is with no doubt the most beautiful and complex design of a bronze door ever
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created. Again, this made me think of how challenging the task must have been for the craftsman and the endless discussions he must have had with the prince. Over the entrance, a carved inscription panel reads the following:
This palace was built by Prince Mohamed Ali, son of the late Khedive Mohamed Tewfik, to revive Islamic art and celebrate it. The architecture and ornamentation were created by his Highness the Prince. The execution was undertaken by Master Mohamed Afifi in the year AH 1348 (1929-1930). It was a gentle and appreciative gesture for the prince to commemorate the name of the builder by adding his name following his own. This is a sign of humility which made me appreciate Prince Mohamed Ali even more. Rarely did founders add the name of the craftsmen in their foundation panels and only a handful of Cairo’s monuments include tributes to the builders. The few names that were passed on to us are mainly found in written sources. The prince also included the names of the different craftsmen who contributed to the construction of his mosque in a panel placed at its entrance. To emphasize that he wanted his palace to be converted into a museum after his death, in 1938, the prince added a building with fifteen rooms surrounding a courtyard in which he displayed his collection of rare manuscripts and Qurans along with various artefacts such as carpets, textiles, arms and weapons. Dr Mahfouz recalls seeing a portrait of the prince by the renowned Turkish royal painter Hedayat Shirazi in the museum. Today, this exceptional collection is in storage and unfortunately no longer accessible to the public. The prince’s position as heir to the throne and head of Farouk’s regency council left its marks on the final additions to the palace layout. Dr Mahfouz explained to me how the prince started building a new saray after becoming King Farouk’s regent in 1937, following the death of King Fuad. He used this ‘Golden Hall’ for official visits ART D’ÉGYPTE
and for matters related to the crown, in parallel with Abdin Palace. In 1947, a throne saray was added and completed in 1949, marking the end of construction at the Manial Palace. The prince was seventy by then, but still contemplating his lost dream of becoming king. Architecture was not the only means he used to claim legitimacy. Dr Mahfouz drew my attention to how the prince added portraits, also by Hedayat, of every ruler from the Mohamed Ali family but ended with his brother, Khedive Abbas Hilmi II. There are no portraits of King Fuad nor of his son. This was the prince’s way of objecting to the dethroning of his brother by the British in 1914, which deprived him of his legitimate right to claim the throne.
At a time when Cairo’s architectural scene was heavily dominated by European styles, Prince Mohamed Ali decided to explore more traditional themes. He wanted to leave a statement through art for future visitors to contemplate and admire. He was an avid lover of Islamic and Arab art and his palace is indeed a revival of various traditional crafts that we are sadly losing at a very high rate today. The Manial Palace melds all these different identities. So next time when you visit, try to see beyond the structure and think of the time spent to research, select and recreate all these different styles. This architectural heritage is extremely rich and yet full of surprises. When it is adapted cleverly, it can create very exciting designs. Prince Mohamed Ali played smartly with this heritage. He understood it, he appreciated it and he decided to reinvent it for his own time. I wish that people would follow in the prince’s steps and look deep into their heritage with love, respect and appreciation. Prince Mohamed Ali succeeded marvellously; why can’t we?
This article was written in collaboration with Dr Amal Mahfouz, General Manager of Scientific Publication at the Ministry of Antiquities.
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The foundation panel at the entrance of the mosque inscribed with the names of the different craftsmen contributing to the project including the master mason and the supervisor. Also included is the date in Hijri—AH 1352. Image courtesy of Rehab Ragaee. ART D’ÉGYPTE
Prince Mohamed Ali Tewfik (right) with visiting dignitaries The Manial Palace Collection Archival images The Manial Palace Collection NOTHING VANISHES, EVERYTHING TRANSFORMS
The Echoing Whispers of the Manial Palace
Dr Ridha Moumni
For several decades, the Manial Palace lay abandoned, a place of nostalgia, home only to memories of a distant past and the splendour of the Egyptian ‘golden age’. It is on this site that Prince Mohamed Ali Tewfik first brought architects, artists and other craftsmen and artisans to create an early modern vision of the finest palace, garden and museum in the region. The building represented all that which the Arab world wished to achieve at the beginning of the twentieth century: a home to the cultural richness of the Muslim world, intertwined with aesthetic ideals that underpinned an architectural creation at the advent of a colonized era. In contrast to the royal palaces which adopted European stylistic trends, this construction honoured the Islamic arts at a time when French and British elites sought to both question and define the classicism of ‘Oriental’ architecture. Subsequently, the Manial Palace served as a testimony to a form of classicism which is best characterized as a living legacy. The spirit and the generosity of Prince Mohamed Ali gives visitors the opportunity to embrace his vision, which he dedicated to Cairo and its inhabitants. Reflecting the status of Egyptian identity in the early twentieth century, this museum was at once a symbol of power as well as a place of reception and meditation. Through the multiplicity of influences, the Manial Palace demonstrated the development of Islamic art and the new architectural solutions to showcase it. The introduction of European furniture, portraits and painting demonstrated the occidental influences and the evolution of the taste of the aristocracy at the end of the nineteenth and early twentieth centuries. Traditional ceramic panels—some by the Armenian artist David Ohannessian—frame the paintings that hang in the reception rooms in an innovative display mixing the traditional and the contemporary and reflecting the artistic sensitivity of the prince. Initially, he sought to honour Islamic art by designing an architectural marvel reflecting his artistic sensibilities during a period where the relevant notion of sovereignty among Arab elites was tied to knowledge and culture. Accordingly, he chose the façade and interior design of the palace to reflect the political transformation of that period. The eclectic taste of the palace is defined by the artistic ART D’ÉGYPTE
amalgamation of both Ottoman and European influences—two empires that vied for control of the country—with further stylistic influences from traditional Islamic art, whether Persian, Andalusian or everything in between. In a period that questioned the definition of classical Islamic art and the multicultural layers that forged it, the building echoed the political situation in Egypt and demonstrated the artistic homogenisation of cultures that were impacted by the early wave of twentieth-century globalization.
In recent history, the palace underwent several structural changes in the decades following the death of the prince. These changes signalled the rejection of former historical tropes of power and political regimes and is a common phenomenon in the Arab world as it attempts to redefine itself within the framework of the evolving political, social and cultural landscape. Similar to the Manial Palace, the Qsar es-Saïd Palace in neighbouring Tunisia was once considered a jewel of nineteenth-century architecture. However, it was abandoned and used as a warehouse despite its historical cultural value as the residence of Mohamed el-Sadok, the last bey of pre-colonial Tunisia. After more than a century of neglect, it was eventually partly restored and opened for the first time to the public to house the exhibition L’Eveil d’une nation: l’Art à l’aube d’une Tunisie moderne (1837-1881), which focused on Tunisia’s period of ‘Great Reforms’. Despite the obvious problematics of presenting an exhibition on the monarchic era in a post-revolutionary context, the reopening of the palace was an important experience for contemporary visitors, eager to see how the past informed the present within a post-Arab Spring context. Sites of culture such as the Manial and Qsar es-Saïd palaces allow us to reassess a particular historical period. They make apparent the complexity of a period chronologically close to our contemporary reality— particularly given the increasing search for identity in the Arab world. The opening of these monumental sites to the public sheds light on the importance of art and architecture as a reflection of political transformations. It also highlights the life of Arab elites who were important intermediaries between Turkish and European cultures and who played a central role in the modernization of their states NOTHING VANISHES, EVERYTHING TRANSFORMS
through invaluable contributions to preserving important cultural materials including artworks, manuscripts and other artefacts. Many of their collections have formed the basis for prominent museum collections. After an extended period of decay and neglect, the Manial Palace became the subject of an ambitious, decade-long restoration project to return it to its former glory. A year after its reopening the impeccably restored building shines again, welcoming the works of a new generation of artists. The exhibition, Nothing Vanishes, Everything Transforms, organized by Art d’Égypte, presents the works of 28 contemporary artists working with a wide variety of artistic media, including photography, painting, sculpture, installation, video, and sound. The show seeks to capture the atmosphere of one of Egypt’s greatest transitional periods. It further reveals to the public the creative energy and expectations of a new generation of artists, brought together in one of the most iconic artistic sanctuaries in modern Egypt. The exhibition follows on from Eternal Light: Something Old, Something New held at the Egyptian Museum in Cairo (2017) and demonstrates the importance of curated contemporary exhibitions at a time of social transformation. In particular, within the frames of the Manial Palace, the art on view offers an important dialogue concerning the role of heritage which was partially erased during nationalistic uprisings. It functions as a symbolic site to reflect upon ideas pertaining to cultural memory, whereby art becomes a vehicle to articulate the forgotten dreams of a generation struggling to redefine itself, suspended between the past and present. Many of the artists presented in Nothing Vanishes, Everything Transforms root their work in the past. The Manial Palace is a unique creative home in the history of modern Egypt where an attempt was made to crystallize classical Islamic art and accept contemporary influences in a place defining artistic syncretism. Its restoration has allowed artists to explore new site-specific possibilities. Conversely, in European and American museums, the introduction and juxtaposition of ancient art and contemporary art ART D’ÉGYPTE
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revolves around the question of integration. Often artists are invited to select and ‘curate’ ancient works, transforming them, and thus updating the vernacular. However, in the Arab world, displaying contemporary art alongside ancient art is more complex and raises question about situating contemporary art alongside historical pieces. Therefore, this particular exhibition can be considered as an experimental commentary on initiating new readings between the ancient and the contemporary through the specificity of site. An aesthetic and intellectual creation, the Manial Palace acts as a refuge for arts that resonate with several emotional implications, not only through the richness of artworks, architecture, colours and sounds, but also its shadows, silences and whispers that take on important contemporary significance for both artists and visitors alike. The exhibition offers a multifaceted take on the notion of dreams and ephemera encapsulated within the thinking of two distinct thinkers such as Greek philosopher Anaxagoras and French chemist Lavoisier who both argued that ‘everything is transformed’ and thus serve as the curatorial precis of the exhibition. The recent revival of the Manial Palace as the location for this exhibition can be viewed as a return to its original premise as a site of cultural and intellectual exchange, voiced through a selection of art of our time in Egypt.
Interior detail Image courtesy of Abdallah Dawestashy ART D’ÉGYPTE
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Inertia is a leading Egyptian real estate company that develops distinctive, valuable, and dynamic projects in different parts of Egypt. Since 2007, our goal has been to provide more than just properties; we aim to build thriving, vibrant communities that put the interests and needs of our clients first. Art and culture are two strong societal pillars that have become far more prominent in the past decade. At Inertia, we also understand that they have a wider and a more measurable impact on our economy, health, wellbeing, society, and of course, education.
We believe that art is a way of life. It provides us with the key to celebrating the world in all its beauty and passion. The ubiquity of ancient art contrasts sharply with the prevalent idea today that art is a luxury product of civilization, a cultural frill, a piece of social veneer. At Inertia, we realize that art and culture are a strategic natural resource. We firmly believe that they are instrumental in developing society, illuminating our inner lives, and enriching our emotional world. In light of these intrinsic beliefs, we are honoured to support Art D’Égypte in their efforts to promote Egyptian art and artists. We encourage other corporate leaders to provide an example to consumers, shareholders and investors by putting good corporate citizenship on a par with providing excellent products and services. Skilled talent is increasingly hard to recruit and retain. Amid the clutter on social media, it’s getting harder to control brand image. Firms are looking for new ways to stimulate innovative thinking and attract a diverse workforce. What better way to show that than through support for art and culture? Our collaboration with Art D’Égypte and our ongoing support for the art and culture scene in Egypt highlight our conviction that fostering creativity is vital to building environments that not only satisfy our basic human needs but also nourish our souls.
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Over the years, Commercial International Bank-Egypt (CIB), Egypt’s leading private-sector bank, has maintained its commitment to community development by leading initiatives and funding ideas and events in the fields of art, culture, social welfare and sports. Believing that the advancement of a nation stems from improving the culture and aesthetic sense of society, CIB has been diversifying its activities in support of artistic endeavours across the country. The Bank’s steadfast commitment to community development has contributed greatly to preserving Egyptian art and culture as well as enriching the Bank’s private art collection. As a core part of the Bank’s CSR agenda, CIB also works hard to uncover hidden artistic talents across Egypt and shed light on their distinctive artwork by supporting young student artists in the faculties of fine arts across Egypt. In this context, the Bank has been sponsoring major events to nurture Egyptian art talents, such as the exclusive sponsorship of the Cairo Symposium, the Annual Egyptian Youth Salon and the Upper Egypt Salon. CIB also supports Egyptian artists participating in international events, including La Biennale di Venezia, one of the world’s most prestigious arts and culture events, and the Florence Biennale. As part of its commitment to nurturing the Egyptian cultural landscape, CIB is proud to support Art D’Égypte for the second consecutive year in its quest to highlight the richness of Egyptian contemporary art on local, regional and international levels.
A decade and a half of sustainable development.
The Sawiris Foundation for Social Development (SFSD) was established with an endowment from the Sawiris family in 2001 with the aim of offering grants to support development projects and programmes implemented by NGOs, in partnership with the private and governmental sectors. Throughout the past 17 years, the SFSD has the participation and empowerment of Egypt’s most underprivileged communities and improved their conditions by focusing on job creation, provision of high-quality education, addressing priority health topics, community development and cultural awards. The Sawiris Cultural Award is one of the most important of SFSD activities that support and enrich the cultural landscape in Egypt. The award was initiated in 2005 to recognize and encourage excellence in literature by emerging and established Egyptian writers. The SFSD is also launching a long-awaited opportunity for future artists seeking further education abroad to enrich and develop their talents. The Sawiris Arts & Culture Scholarship (SACS) targets highly motivated, talented and socially engaged applicants who are aware of the important role art plays in a flourishing and developing society. For more information, please visit www.sawirisfoundation.org
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On the banks of the famed River Nile, the city of Cairo—called the Triumphant in Arabic—is the centre of Egyptian culture and commerce. Here, civilizations have met for centuries, creating a rich diversity of contrasts: modern and ancient architecture, urban sparkle and restful natural beauty, business and leisure. And there’s no better way to experience the majesty of the city and its history than through the gracious hospitality of Fairmont Nile City. Equipped with the most advanced technology to serve the needs of the discerning traveller, Fairmont Nile City is also intimately attuned to its surroundings. With sweeping panoramas of the Nile, Cairo’s natural beauty is always in sight throughout Fairmont Nile City’s guest rooms and suites. Added to this panoply of wonders are special features such as the newly opened Italian restaurant L’Uliveto, the signature Asian fusion Saigon Restaurant & Lounge, and the Middle Eastern restaurant Bab El Nil. In addition to exclusive business settings and Fairmont Gold, the largest executive lounge in Cairo, the hotel, with its dedicated team of service professionals, offers its guests many opportunities to unwind at the largest spa in downtown Cairo and the Sky Pool on the hotel’s twenty-fifth floor.
Scan the art, uncover the story. SMARTIFY originated from a genuine passion for art and for discovering the stories behind each work. Many of us develop a much deeper connection with an artwork when we understand its context and learn about its creator. Imagine an enthusiastic and knowledgeable friend standing next to you, telling you about each piece of art and explaining what makes other people appreciate it. Imagine the extra enjoyment that could bring. Founded in December 2015, SMARTIFY does just that. It allows you to access this kind of rich information immediately every time you are curious about an artwork. Using advanced image recognition technology, SMARTIFY allows you to simply scan the artwork on your smartphone and unlock the stories behind it, creating a digital personal art collection. As a global platform that democratises art while supporting art venues and artists, SMARTIFY is available in some of the most prestigious museums across the world, such as the National Gallery in London, the Rijksmuseum in Amsterdam, the State Hermitage Museum in St Petersburg and the Met in New York. Download the app for free on the App Store or Google Play and discover more about the artworks on view during Art D’Égypte.
Mr & Mrs Claude Abdalla Claude & Christiane Abdalla are the owners of MARMONIL, a vertically integrated Egyptian company and an industry leader operating in marble and granite. The familyowned business was founded in 1963 and has expanded worldwide through sister companies, agents and strategic partnerships. The MARMONIL name stands for solid delivery of quality work, attention to detail, experience and innovation. The company is also proud to collaborate on community development projects with a number of organizations including the American Chamber of Commerce and the Children’s Cancer Hospital. Throughout MARMONIL’s history, there runs one dominant thread: constant investment in technology, people and in the pursuit of excellence. The couple make it their policy to support initiatives they believe are helping to build a brighter future for Egypt and take pleasure in supporting Art d’Égypte as part of promoting Egyptian art and artists to a worldwide audience.
Mr & Mrs Hisham El-Khazindar Ola and Hisham El-Khazindar enjoy collecting Egyptian and Middle Eastern modern and contemporary art and are strong believers in engaging with Egypt’s and the region’s art ecosystems. In 2017, the couple supported the Egyptian Pavilion at the 57th Venice Biennale as part of their commitment to supporting important cultural initiatives. Mr & Mrs Nadim Elias Nadim Elias and his spouse Laura Kfoury through their love for art have placed themselves in the middle of Egypt’s art scene, supporting artists and steadily growing their collection. Nadim Elias is a prominent member on the board of trustees of the Adam Henein Foundation. Mr & Mrs Rasheed Kamel Proud supporters of the Egyptian art scene, Mr and Mrs Rasheed Kamel also enjoy collecting Egyptian art and are particularly interested in contemporary and conceptual pieces. Their superb, skilfully curated private collection can almost be considered a small museum in their home. Mr Kamel is the executive partner at Al Kamel Law Office. Sultan Sooud Al Qassemi Sultan Sooud Al Qassemi is the founder of Barjeel Art Foundation, an independent, UAE-based initiative established to manage, preserve and exhibit an extensive collection of modern and contemporary Arab art.
NOTHING VANISHES, EVERYTHING TRANSFORMS
The foundation’s guiding principle is to contribute to the development of the Arab art scene and to foster critical dialogue around regional art practices. Mr & Mrs Yasser Hashem Passionate art collectors and patrons since the early 1980s, Mr and Mrs Yasser Hashem have contributed to various artistic projects and amassed an extensive collection of Egyptian modern art over the years. Mr Hashem is the managing partner of the Egypt-based law firm of Zaki Hashem & Partners.
BRONZE Mrs Cherine Helmy Former gallery owner Cherine Helmy is a passionate art collector and patron of the contemporary Egyptian art scene.
Mrs Nermine Mokhtar One of Egypt’s premier interior designers, Nermine Mokhtar’s preferred style is one that combines modernized pharaonic, retour d’Égypte and art deco enhanced with contemporary Egyptian art. Dr & Mrs Ramzi Dalloul Ramzi and Saeda Dalloul are the founders of the Dalloul Arab Art Foundation, which aims to expand the global reach of modern and contemporary Arab art. Mr & Mrs Tarek El Mahdy Born and raised in Alexandria, art collectors Mr and Mrs Tarek El Mahdy take a particular interest in modern and contemporary artists from the ancient port city. Ms Yasmin Abdel Karim & Mr Khashayar Mahdavi In addition to co-founding Yalla Fel Sekka with Yasmin Abdel Karim, Khashayar Mahdavi is a passionate collector of Egyptian contemporary art based in Paris.
Mr & Mrs Karim Abou Youssef Karim and Dina Abou Youssef are enthusiastic collectors of modern Egyptian art. Mr Abou Youssef is the founding partner of law firm Youssef & Partners. Mrs Mona Hussein Mahally by Mona Hussein is a homegrown creative hub for products by innovative designers inspired by Egyptian culture and local materials. ART D’ÉGYPTE
Art D’Égypte is a privately owned Egyptian multidisciplinary firm founded by Nadine Abdel Ghaffar to support the Egyptian arts and culture scene. It provides art consultancies to institutions, corporations and private collectors as well as curatorial services to artists, art centres and foundations, art projects, public spaces, museums, and art appreciators. The team has a strong background and extensive experience in the Egyptian art market and aims to develop strong local, regional and international collaborations to enhance and promote the rich Egyptian art scene.
Art D’Égypte aims to bridge the gap between Egyptian artists and the world and to support young artists and artists with scarce funds to get their work displayed and published. Cataloguing Egypt’s modern and contemporary art heritage is a further goal of the companythrough the development of documentaries on modern Egyptian artists starting with the city of Alexandria. The company’s strategy is to organize a yearly pop-up show in a historic place in Egypt to shed light on the country’s abundant cultural heritage and to connect the art of Egypt’s past with that of the 21st century. By raising awareness, the team’s target is to help preserve Egypt’s heritage and advance the international profile of modern and contemporary Egyptian art, presenting a different view of Egypt to the world.
NOTHING VANISHES, EVERYTHING TRANSFORMS
Nadine Abdel Ghaffar is a multitalented professional with a passion for art and culture. In 2003, she founded the interior design consultancy Veradeco and, since then, her hard work and dedication to art and design have helped her enhance the cultural and social development landscape in Egypt. In 2005, Abdel Ghaffar decided to take her love of art to a more professional level and established Art D’Égypte, a multidisciplinary art consultancy. She started organizing exhibitions in Egypt and Dubai to promote Egyptian art and artists, and she works tirelessly to expand her knowledge of the field and maintain her formidable connections to both collectors and artists. She is committed to documenting Egypt’s modern art heritage and promoting Egyptian art worldwide. Thanks to her exceptional experience and deep commitment to the promotion of Egyptian art, she has succeeded in positioning Art D’Égypte as one of the most exclusive and sought-after art consultancies in the region. Malak Shenouda studied visual art and sociology at the American University in Cairo (AUC). Her work includes archival research, curating, writing and organizing art-related events. She has worked with artists and cultural initiatives in Egypt, London and Berlin and participated in the organization of the Downtown Contemporary Art Festival Cairo (D-Caf) and the Berlin film festivals, Berlinale and Forum Expanded. In 2018, she was selected as one of the 10 residents of the Roznama Studio Program organized by Medrar for Contemporary Art and the D-Caf Visual Arts Program. Shenouda also has her own multi-disciplinary artistic practice and has been part of several group exhibitions in Egypt, including the video and photography festival Cairographie at DARB1718. She has been on the curating team of Art D’Égypte for a year. Hana El Beblawy studied visual art and architecture at the American University in Cairo (AUC). She is a research-based visual artist who tackles the topics of memory, cognition and forgetting in her work and undertakes archival research to create artworks that question the evidence of history. She has been involved in the organization of the Downtown Contemporary Art Festival Cairo (D-Caf) and has collaborated with various international artists and curators, including German curator Berit Schuck and Romanian artist Manual Pelmus. Her work was exhibited in the Roznama 5 exhibition (2016) organized by Medrar for Contemporary Art and she has taken part in various other group exhibitions for contemporary art in Egypt. In parallel to her art, El Beblawy works at Art D’Égypte in the field of art curation and management. ART D’ÉGYPTE
Prince Abbas Hilmi is a senior managing director and chairman of the executive committee of Concord International Investments which he joined in January 1989 having spent the prior three years in London as vice president of Kidder, Peabody & Co., Ltd. and executive director of Kidder, Peabody International Investments Ltd. Prior to this, he was general manager of Schroder Asseily & Co. Ltd., and from 1968 to 1981, he was an associate partner at Grieveson Grant & Co., London, becoming the first foreign member of the London Stock Exchange in 1970. In addition, he is a director of the Concord Portfolio Management Company, Concord Misr Investments (BVI) Ltd., Concord National (BVI) Ltd., and Stanhope Overseas Ltd. Prince Abbas is also the chairman of the Friends of Manial Palace Museum, honorary secretary of the Friends of the Coptic Museum and a member of the board of the Association d’amitié Egypto-Suisse.
Amal Nasr is a critic in the field of visual arts and a professor of photography at the Faculty of Fine Arts, Alexandria University. She has participated in over 16 photography exhibitions, both in Egypt and abroad, and is currently a member of the documentation committees at the Museum of Modern Art, the Seif and Adham Wanly Museum and the Mahmoud Saïd museum. Nasr has also arbitrated at numerous national and international art festivals and competitions including the Luxor International Symposium of Photography, the Youth Salon and the State Encouragement Award, among others. She has been a recipient of numerous awards, most notably the State Prize for Innovation in the field of photography (1998) and the State Encouragement Award in the field of visual criticism (2011). She is currently a member on the acquisitions committee at the Commercial International Bank (CIB). Doris Behrens-Abouseif is professor emeritus at the School of Oriental and African Studies (SOAS), University of London where she held the Nasser D. Khalili chair for Islamic art and archaeology from 2004–2014. Widely acknowledged as the pre-eminent scholar on the architecture of Cairo and a leading specialist in the art and cultural history of the Middle East, she is a member of the Academia Europaea and a visiting professor at several universities including the American University in Cairo, Freie Universität Berlin and the University of Virginia. Her most recent publications include Practising Diplomacy in the Mamluk Sultanate: Gifts and Material Culture in the Medieval Islamic World (I.B. Tauris, 2014) and The Book in Mamluk Egypt and Syria (1250–1517): Scribes, Libraries and Market (forthcoming, Brill, 2018). Behrens-Abouseif earned her PhD from the University of Hamburg (1972) and her habilitation from the University of Freiburg (1992). NOTHING VANISHES, EVERYTHING TRANSFORMS
Gilles Gauthier was born in 1944 in a village near the French city of Bordeaux. He moved to Algeria in 1966 as part of Franco-Algerian cooperation. After fifteen years of teaching Spanish and French in Algeria, Morocco and France, and after studying Arabic in the National Institute of Oriental Languages and Cultures in Paris, he joined the French Ministry of Foreign Affairs in 1982. There, he held various responsibilities in Iraq, Algeria, Bahrain, Egypt and Lebanon, before being appointed ambassador to Yemen. He is the author of Entre deux rives : cinquante ans de passion pour le monde arabe (Lattès, 2018). He has also introduced the Egyptian writer Alaa El Aswany to the French public by translating his works into the French language. He currently holds the position of adviser to Jack Lang, the president of the Institut du Monde Arabe (IMA) in Paris, France. Morad Montazami is an art historian, curator and publisher currently working as a research curator (Middle East and North Africa) for the Tate Modern in London. He has published several essays on artists such as Jeremy Deller, Francis Alÿs, Zineb Sedira, Éric Baudelaire, Walid Raad, Latif al-Ani, Bahman Mohassess, Hamed Abdalla, Mohammed Melehi and Faouzi Laatiris, among others. Montazami is also the director of Zamân Books Publishing and the editor-in-chief of the related journal Zamân, which explores transnational studies of Arab, Asian and African modernities. He has curated Volumes fugitifs—Faouzi Laatiris et l’institut national des beaux-arts de Tétouan at the Musée Mohamed VI d’art moderne et contemporain, Rabat, 2016; Bagdad Mon Amour at the Institut des cultures d’Islam, Paris, 2018; and Hamed Abdalla—Arabécédaire at The Mosaic Rooms, London, 2018. Nada Shabout is a professor of art history and the coordinator of the Contemporary Arab and Muslim Cultural Studies Initiative (CAMCSI) at the University of North Texas. She is also the founding president of the Association for Modern and Contemporary Art (AMCA) from the Arab World, Iran and Turkey. Shabout has authored Modern Arab Art: Formation of Arab Aesthetics (University of Florida Press, 2007) and co-edited New Vision: Arab Art in the 21st Century (Thames & Hudson, 2009) with Salwa Mikdadi and Modern Art in the Arab World: Primary Documents (Museum of Modern Art, New York, 2018) with Anneka Lenssen and Sarah Rogers. She has curated numerous exhibitions including Sajjil: A Century of Modern Art and Interventions: A Dialogue Between the Modern and the Contemporary at Mathaf: Arab Museum of Modern Art in 2010 and the travelling exhibition Dafatir: Contemporary Iraqi Book Art, 2005-2009. Omniya Abdel Barr is an architect with experience in cultural heritage restoration and documentation. She holds a PhD on Mamluk architectural history from Aix-Marseille University (2015), an MSc in architectural conservation from the Raymond Lemaire International Centre for Conservation at KU Leuven (2004) and a BSc in architecture from the Faculty of Fine Arts at Helwan University (2000). Her work focuses on Islamic architectural heritage and she is currently a fellow at the Victoria and Albert Museum (V&A) in London where she works on the K.A.C Creswell photographic archive, with funding from the Barakat Trust. She also directs the ‘Rescuing the Mamluk Minbars of Cairo’ project, funded by the Cultural Protection Fund (UK) and implemented by the Egyptian Heritage Rescue Foundation. Photo by Elsaid Ashour. ART D’ÉGYPTE
Paul-Gordon Chandler is an author, art curator, Episcopal priest, interfaith advocate, and social entrepreneur who has lived and worked in the Middle East and North Africa for many years in leadership positions in the arenas of the arts, publishing and the Episcopal/Anglican Church. He is the Founding President of CARAVAN, an international peacebuilding NGO that uses the arts to build bridges between the creeds and cultures of the Middle East and the West. An authority on the Middle East and on Muslim-Christian relations, he was the rector of the international Episcopal church in Cairo, Egypt from 2003–2013. The author of four books, his most recent publication is on the allembracing nature of the Lebanese-born poet-artist Kahlil Gibran, titled In Search of a Prophet: A Spiritual Journey with Kahlil Gibran (Rowman & Littlefield Publishers, 2017). For more information, see www.paulgordonchandler.com Ridha Moumni read art history and archaeology at the Sorbonne University in Paris where he earned his PhD. He researches classical, modern and contemporary art from a global and transnational perspective, with emphasis on questions of collecting practice and intellectual history. Winner of several prizes, he was the first Tunisian Fellow at the French Academy in Rome (Villa Medici). He has curated numerous exhibitions of photography and modern art, including The Awakening of a Nation: Art at the Dawn of Modern Tunisia (1837–1881) in 2016 to commemorate the 60th anniversary of national independence. Moumni is currently working on a project on modernism in Tunisia.
Rose Issa is a curator, writer and producer who has championed visual art and film from the Middle East for more than 30 years. She has lived in London since the 1980s, showcasing upcoming and established artists, producing exhibitions and film festivals worldwide and running a publishing programme. As well as holding exhibitions at Rose Issa Projects in London, she frequently co-curates exhibitions with international private and public institutions, including the Beirut Art Fair, Lebanon (2017); Crawford Art Gallery, Cork (2014); Virginia Commonwealth University Qatar, Doha (2014); and the Victoria and Albert Museum, London (2013, 2006); among many others. Founder of the publishing units Rose Issa Projects and Beyond Art Production, she has published almost 30 catalogues and monographs, including the most recent Signs of Our Times: From Calligraphy to Calligraffiti (Merrell Publishing, 2016) and Ourouba, The Eye of Lebanon (Beirut Art Fair, 2017). Photo by Alex Atack, courtesy of Canvas magazine. Valérie Didier-Hess has spent the last nine years working in the art world in the cultural hub of the Middle East, Dubai, and has recently moved back to Paris. During her time in Dubai, she developed an academic passion for modern Egyptian art. Following the success of the Mahmoud Saïd Catalogue Raisonné (Skira, 2016), co-edited with Dr Hussam Rashwan, the first book of its kind for a Middle Eastern artist, Didier-Hess and Rashwan are dedicated to continuing to preserve modern Egyptian art’s rich cultural heritage and are currently working on the Abdel Hadi al-Gazzar catalogue raisonné with the artist’s family, as well as on the English translation of Aimé Azar’s seminal book, La Peinture moderne en Égypte (1961). Didier-Hess graduated from Cambridge University with a BA in art history (2004), and from the Courtauld Institute of Art, London with a master’s degree in art history (2005). NOTHING VANISHES, EVERYTHING TRANSFORMS
Walaa El-Din Badawy is the museum director at the Manial Palace Museum. A graduate of Cairo University’s Islamic and Coptic Department at the Faculty of Archaeology (2000), he later obtained diplomas in art history (2005) and Egyptology (2010) from the same university. He completed his MSc in Museum Studies at Helwan University’s Faculty of Tourism and Hotel Management in 2016 where his thesis addressed the collection management policies of historical museums with a focus on the Manial Palace Museum. He is currently a PhD candidate at the same university and is researching the role of museums in preserving Egypt’s cultural heritage, taking the Abdin Palace and Museum as a particular case study. Zahi Hawass is a world-renowned archaeologist whose dynamic personality and extensive knowledge have sparked global interest in Ancient Egypt. He received his MA and PhD from the University of Pennsylvania, where he studied as a Fulbright fellow, and has received 7 honorary doctorates from various foreign universities. He began as an inspector of antiquities and rose to become the Secretary General of the Supreme Council of Antiquities, as well as the first Minister of State for Antiquities. In 2017, he was named Ambassador for Peace and Cultural Heritage by the International Federation of Peace and Sustainable Development, an affiliate organization to the United Nations. He has written more than 40 popular and academic books and over 150 scholarly articles on his endeavors including the Egyptian Mummy Project. Currently, he is directing an Egyptian team excavating at the Valley of the Monkeys on the West Bank of Luxor. 151
Gilles Gauthier is a member of Art d’Égypte’s advisory board. For an extended bio, please refer to the Contributors section. Hussein El Shaboury is an interior design consultant specialized in the design and development of museums and heritage sites. In a career spanning over thirty years, he has been responsible for the development of more than 60 museums in Egypt, the Middle East, Asia and Europe including the Coptic museum in Cairo, the Luxor Museum and the Yasser Arafat Museum at Ramallah. He has also been a consultant to the Getty Conservation Institute’s site development and management project at the Valley of the Queens in Luxor. El Shaboury holds a PhD from the College of Fine Arts at Alexandria University. 152
Maxa Zoller is the new artistic director of the International Women’s Film Festival Dortmund | Cologne. She also works as a film curator for Art Basel and has taught experimental film history and theory at diverse universities including the American University in Cairo, Goldsmiths College and Sotheby’s Institute of Art, London. In addition to co-curating a major solo exhibition of Anthony McCall at EYE Filmmuseum in Amsterdam, she has presented various experimental film screenings in London and beyond. Her publications cover topics ranging from post-socialist identity discourse and feminism to the history of Western avant-garde and experimental film. Rose Issa is a member of Art d’Égypte’s advisory board. For an extended bio, please refer to the Contributors section. Yasser Zaki Hashem is a member of Art d’Égypte’s advisory board. For an extended bio, please refer to the Patrons section.
NOTHING VANISHES, EVERYTHING TRANSFORMS
I would like to express my deepest gratitude to the many contributors and supporters who made Night at the Manial Palace a reality. It has truly been a privilege to witness their faith in us and their unwavering love for Egypt, a land in eternal transformation. This event would not have been possible without the support of so many people: The stars of Nothing Vanishes, Everything Transforms, our wonderful Egyptian artists, who gave us time, energy and so much of their exceptional creativity to make this exhibition a reality: Adam Henein Ahmed Askalany Ahmed Badry Ahmed Farid Ahmed Karaly Alyâa Kamel Diaa El Din Daoud Esmat Dawestashy Farida El Gazzar Ghada Amer Hazem El Mestikawy Huda Lutfi Islam Shabana Khaled Hafez
Magdi Mostafa Maged Mikhail Maher Dawoud Malak Yacout Marwan Elgamal Mohamed Abdelkarim Mohamed Abla Mohamed Monaiseer Nadine H. Nihal Wahby Said Badr Sarkis Tossoonian Shady Elnoshokaty Yasmine Elmeleegy
The Minister of Antiquities, H.E. Dr Khaled Al Anany The Minister of Foreign Affairs, H.E. Sameh Shoukry Secretary General of the Supreme Council of Antiquities, Dr Mostafa Waziri Head of Museums and Supervisor of Exhibitions Abroad, Ilham Salah Eldin Mohamed Manial Palace Museum Director, Walaa El-Din Badawy and all Manial Palace Museum staff and employees including Mohamed El Bordini, Mostafa Ismail, Ahmed Anwar, Ibrahim Farag and Mostafa El Belbissy.
Nevine Aref for managing the press. Mona Abdel Nazeer for the logistics. The galleries that generously collaborated with Art D’Égypte: Hamza El Serafi and Athar who supported us extensively; Karim Francis, Safarkhan, Mashrabia, and Gypsum in Cairo; Third Line Gallery in Dubai; Cheim & Read in New York; Athr in Jeddah and Kalfayan in Athens. The Art D’Égypte team, my backbone and the best team in the world, Malak Shenouda and Hana El Beblawy for their dedication and commitment to making our initiative work. They have been the true powerhouse behind this exhibition and I am truly grateful for their creativity and passion and for their perseverance in the face of all obstacles. I thank them from the bottom of my heart for believing in this project and I look forward to even greater successes together. Our contributors, Prince Abbas Hilmi, who provided support and access to his archives; Dr Zahi Hawass, who provided encouragement and help at every level; Dr Amal Nasr; Dr Doris Behrens-Abouseif; Dr Nada Shabout; Dr Omniya Abdel Barr; Rev. Paul Gordon Chandler; Dr Ridha Moumni; and Valérie Didier-Hess, for their generous involvement in this publication. Our lecturers who generously shared their knowledge, in particular, Morad Montazami for coming all the way from London and for kindly contributing an article; Khaled Hafez for always being there for me, shadowing and guiding; Shady Elnoshokaty for his support; and Duncan McDonald.
Our advisory board, and particularly Rose Issa, for her true dedication to our initiative, Maxa Zoller for her insightful guidance, Dr Hussein El Shaboury, Gilles Gauthier, and Yasser Zaki Hashem. Our editor Nevine Henein for her tremendous effort in bringing this publication to light; Dr Gemma Tully and Jane Smythe for their help and support; Abdallah Dawestashy for his outstanding photographs of the palace; and translators Nancy Nasr El Din and Mohamed Osman. Our esteemed printing partner Sahara Printing Company and, above all, its CEO Nadim Elias for being a true supporter of the art scene in Egypt. His support to our initiative and his dedication are truly appreciated. Dalia Sobhy for her guidance and Nevine Sherif. Inertia for their committed support and their amazing team—Ahmed al-Moataz, Reem Ezz El Din, Alaa Saleh, Mohamed Madian and Hussein Rifai—for making it possible to hold Night at the Manial Palace.
The CIB team, particularly Romani Hafez and Reham El Geoushy for their dedication under the guidance of chairman and managing director Hisham Ezz El Arab and CEO Hussein Abaza. The Sawiris Foundation for Social Development (SFSD) team for the great work they do in Egypt. Special thanks to Samih Sawiris for his support, trust and guidance; Dina Nagaty for assistance in every step; Rahma Zein for her help with press, and Nora Selim and Rosa Abdel Malek for putting so much effort into the foundation. The Fairmont, our official hotel partners for the ‘Royal Catering’ and passionate supporters of art and top-quality service, and in particular, Eman Mekky, Yara El Douky, Chef Mohamed El Sherif, and Abdel Kader Hanafy. Smartify’s Gwendoline Knybühler and Anna Lowe who have helped us launch the first art collection in the region to be digitized and included on their phone application and database, thus introducing a new level of technology to the Egyptian art scene. DHL, our logistics partners, Ahmed Fayez for his willingness to solve every logistical obstacle and our dear friend Lyne Roulin for the constant help and support. MO4 Network, our official media partners, for their creative input and the efforts of
the team, Nadine Tadros, Federico Corno, Nariman El Bakry and their ‘Hatshepsut’ Amy Mowafi. Amir Kamel (AK Musicale) and his enormously talented musicians. Abercrombie & Kent for their invaluable contribution to making this a beautiful night, particularly Amr Badr, for his great support and motivation from the very beginning, and his amazing team, Dalia Khater and Mohamed Ismail. Special thanks to Ashraf Masoud for taking care of the operational details. BMW, official automotive partners, and Yehia El Kodous. The Nile Ritz-Carlton team: Tewfik Mokhtar, Georgette Fakhry, Elhamy Azmy and Islam Sherif. EgyptAir for providing our guests with special flight rates. Special thanks to Nashwa, Miral and Youssef Gad. Prolite and Baher George for providing the light projector and screen with special thanks to Hisham. Dina Iskanader’s team for their dedication in making the exhibition opening a magical experience, particularly Dina herself and Caroline Fawzy. Mohamed Daghash, my brother and supporter, and his super company that can achieve anything, particularly Ahmed Hosny for being very cooperative. Al Ismaelia and Karim Shafie for their efforts to preserve downtown Cairo’s heritage along with Nelly Hidayet and Moushira Adel who have been extremely helpful. Our guides Karim Badr, Ahmed Seddik, Michael Mitchell and Ahmed Al-Bindari. Farida Temraza for her heritage-inspired couture. Kouroum Vineyard, El Gouna, and the support of Shaker Nawal and Mr & Mrs Labib Kallas. The Glenlivet, Absolut Elyx, Waguih Boutros, Laila Mourey and Ingie Bakhoum from Carte Blanche. Miraco Carrier for their kind support, particularly Amr Said and Mohamed Attia. Eva Cosmetics and the Armanios family for providing sunblock. Thanks to Yasmine,
NOTHING VANISHES, EVERYTHING TRANSFORMS
Linda and Riad and special thanks to Riad’s beautiful wife, my little sister Natalie Ashbaa. Origin and Mr & Mrs Hoseiny for their help with the press conference. The supporters of our lecture series, Edita and Nestlé. Uber, our official transportation partner. The British Council for their guidance and support with particular thanks to Cathy Constain, Peter Hawkins and Shaimaa El Banna. Stephane Romatet, Ambassador of France, and the entire embassy team, with special thanks to Mohamed Bouabdallah, Marine Debliquis and Hachem Deif for their support and for hosting our after-party at the beautiful residence on the Nile. Special thanks also to the man of the day, Yves Laurent, Aurélien Chauvier and Catherine Le Thomas for the press. Sibille de Cartier d’Yves, Ambassador of Belgium, for her support, friendship, amazing work and her love for Egypt. Benoît van de Capelle for his role as honorary advisor and advocate for our initiative. Dr Ashraf Reda, professor and vice dean at the Faculty of Fine Arts, Helwan University, and chairman of the Egyptian Council of Fine Arts, for his role as honorary advisor. Rasheed Kamel, honorary advisor, patron, artist and lawyer, whose unwavering support has been of utmost importance in getting this initiative off the ground. Friends and family who contributed tremendously to the success of Night at the Manial Palace. My deepest gratitude to my beloved family: My parents, Mamdouh A. Ghaffar and Aida Fahmy, who fed us culture growing up; my husband Tarek El Mahdy who has financially and morally supported me in every step; my beautiful children, Omar and Taya; and my brother Omar A. Ghaffar. My dear friend and supporter Masha Al Shobokshy and her family who have supported me immensely over the years. Masha has been a true support and saviour; without her we would have had no cocktail reception. My friends, Zahrbanelians, Karim Wissa, Lotfy Mansour, Beatriz Betancourt, Pakinam Elwy, Soraya Bahgat, Dr Hussam
Rashwan, Dr Mennat-Allah El Dorry, Sawsan Mourad, Nora Abla, Ahmed Maghrabi (Makan), Philippe Maari, Olivia Misan Maari and, above all, my auntie, Rawya Mansour, a true idol. Special thanks to our patrons without them this initiative wouldn’t have seen the light: Mr & Mrs Claude Abdalla, Mr & Mrs Hisham El-Khazindar, Mr & Mrs Rasheed Kamel, Mr & Mrs Yasser Hashem, Cherine Helmy, Mr & Mrs Karim Abou Youssef, Mona Hussein, Mr & Mrs Nadim Elias, Nermine Mokhtar, Dr & Mrs Ramzi Dalloul, Yasmin Abdel Karim and Khashayar Mahdavi. Barjeel Art Foundation and Sultan Sooud Al Qassemi, its founder, for his immense support, patronage and steadfast commitment to the arts of the Arab world. His passion and support for Art D’Égypte initiatives made it possible for Night at the Museum to see the light in 2017. Dr Mounir Neamatalla and Laila Neamatalla for their encouragement.
Walid El Batouty for taking care of all the guided tours and being part of this initiative from its creation. Special thanks to the best team of Egyptian tour guides for accompanying our guests.
FO R E C
EE N D RAC
My friends who believed in my work from the start, Nora Al Kholi, Noha El Kabbany, and especially Sherine Ghanem for her unconditional encouragement and dedication. They have been of great support and have helped make this dream come true. Superwoman Ghena Al Hariri who was always working behind the scenes supporting in every way possible. H.E. Ambassador Nasser Kamel, Secretary General of the Union for the Mediterranean, and the amazing Dalia Elbatal for their devoted support. Special thanks to all the companies that trusted us and contributed with in-kind donations to the museum. Philips for lighting the Banyan Alley and various other areas using the newest museum lighting technology; Mohamed A. El Azayem, John Fahmy, Omar Kerm, Menna Onsi and Hossam Nabawy for making it happen.
a contemporary twist and for her profound encouragement. She has been a true inspiration and an Egyptian icon. Thanks to Azza Fahmy’s Farida Sherif and her team’s efforts, Manial Palace now has enough display cases, allowing the public to finally witness Prince Mohamed Ali’s jewellery collection. Nadine Nour El Din, a truly talented artist, for being there from day one and for her beautiful sketches and designs for the invitations. Rawan Abdul Halim and Mohamed Saad for their dedication and attention to detail in designing the exhibition and museum display units. Kamar El Shafie and Ahmed Abbas for their creative designs and meticulousness. Our dedicated and enthusiastic volunteers, Laila Azmi and Mariam Adel.
Duravit and Kamal Gabr for renovating the palace and Karim Hayawan for believing encouraging and helping us with Duravit.
Thank you all for your trust and confidence. Your support has made this amazing journey worth all the sweat, tears and long working hours. It truly takes a village to organize an event like this!
Azza Fahmy for preserving and promoting our heritage and making beautiful jewellery that is influenced by Egyptian history with
Nadine A. Ghaffar Founder and Curator Art D’Égypte
AC H T
ARTISTS’ ACCOMPLISHMENTS SELECTED EXHIBITIONS
2014 Opening of the Adam Henein Museum, Harraniya district, Giza, Egypt 2002 Paintings and Pottery, Zamalek Art Gallery, Cairo, Egypt 1999-2000 Metropolitan Museum of Modern Art, New York, USA 1996 Founded the Aswan International Sculpture Symposium, Aswan, Egypt 1991 Institut du Monde Arabe, Paris, France 1989-98 Restoration of the Sphinx with the Ministry of Culture, Giza, Egypt 1988 ASB Gallery, Munich, Germany 1987 Egyptian Cultural Centre, Paris, France 1983 Sultan Gallery, Kuwait 1980 Egyptian Academy of Fine Arts, Rome, Italy
Solo: 2018 Portmanteau, Letitia Gallery, Beirut, Lebanon 2014 The Provisionary That Lasts, Medrar for Contemporary Art, Cairo, Egypt 2011 Two Minutes Delay, AB Gallery, Zurich, Switzerland 2007 Al Qahira, Cairo Atelier, Downtown Cairo, Egypt
Ahmed Askalany 2014 Art Sawa Gallery, Dubai, UAE 2010 Khan El Maghrabi Gallery, Cairo, Egypt 2010 Magenta 52 Gallery, Milano, Italy 2010 Invisible Presence (curated by Stefania Angarano), Samakhana, Cairo, Egypt 2009 Egyptian Pavilion, Venice Biennale (with Adel El Siwi), Venice Italy 2008 Sculptures, Mashrabia Gallery of Contemporary Art, Cairo, Egypt 2006 Sculptures, Mashrabia Gallery of Contemporary Art, Cairo, Egypt 2004 Townhouse Gallery, Cairo, Egypt 2003 Cairo ... here, Mashrabia Gallery of Contemporary Art, Cairo, Egypt 2001 Rats, Room and Other Tales, Mashrabia Gallery of Contemporary Art, Cairo, Egypt 1999 British Council, Cairo, Egypt
NOTHING VANISHES, EVERYTHING TRANSFORMS
Group: 2017 Open house, Delfina Foundation, London, UK 2016 D-CAF | Downtown Contemporary Arts Festival, Cairo, Egypt 2015 HOME WORKS 7, Beirut Art Centre, Lebanon 2015 What Are You Doing, Object?, Gypsum Gallery, Cairo, Egypt 2013 Museum of Modern and Contemporary Art, Algiers, Algeria 2010 Regionale 11, Hegenheim, France and Freiburg, Germany
Ahmed Farid 2017 Melodies of Conflict, solo exhibition, Safarkhan Art Gallery, Cairo, Egypt 2017 Luxury Living, solo exhibition, Miami, USA (to be exhibited in Art Basel, Miami) 2017 Modern and Contemporary Art Auction, Christie’s, Dubai, UAE 2016 Art for Life, group exhibition sponsored by the Magdi Yacoub Foundation, Safarkhan Art Gallery and Bulgari Egypt, Cairo, Egypt 2016 Behind Closed Doors, solo exhibition, Safarkhan Art Gallery, Cairo, Egypt
2015 Group exhibition, Jerome Zodo Gallery, London, UK 2013 Group exhibition, Faustini Art Gallery, Florence, Italy 2012 Little Treasures, Trevisan International Art, Bologna, Italy 2012 Artists at Home and Abroad, Broadway Gallery NYC, New York, USA 2008 Contemporary Views, al-Masar Art Gallery, Cairo, Egypt
Ahmed Karaly 2014 El Hanager Arts Centre, Cairo, Egypt 2013 El Hanager Arts Centre, Cairo, Egypt 2012 The Mahmoud Khalil Museum, Cairo, Egypt 2009 Sodic Symposium, New York, USA 2008 Solo exhibition, Gezira Centre for the Arts, Cairo, Egypt 2007 Panzuma Symposium, Russia 2006 Solo exhibition, Egyptian Academy of Fine Arts in Rome, Italy 2002 Solo exhibition, Mashrabia Gallery of Contemporary Art, Cairo, Egypt 2000/2001 International Sculpture Symposium, Aswan, Egypt
Alyâa Kamel 2017 Bonhams, Geneva, Switzerland 2015 Cimaise Gallery, Geneva, Switzerland 2013 Gama Gallery, Istanbul, Turkey 2012 Christie’s London for Caspian Arts Foundation, London, UK 2011 Natuzzi, Zurich, Switzerland 2011 Safarkhan Art Gallery, Cairo, Egypt 2010-2011 Solo exhibition at Tafkaj Geneva, Switzerland
2009 Opera Gallery, Geneva, Switzerland 2008 Group exhibition, see301 Gallery, Zurich, Switzerland
Diaa El Din Daoud Solo: 2005/2011 Gezira Centre for the Arts, Cairo, Egypt 2006 Egyptian Academy of Fine Arts, Rome, Italy Group: 1996-1999 Annual Youth Salon, Cairo, Egypt 1996/1998/2000/2002 Cairo International Biennale for Ceramics, Cairo, Egypt 2003 53rd Faenza International Biennale for Ceramics, Faenza, Italy 2007/2011/2015 Gyeonggi International Ceramic Biennale, Gyeonggi-do, South Korea
Esmat Dawestashy 1962-2017 Participated in over 100 exhibitions and 20 international biennales, Egypt and various other countries 2017 With Dawestashy, Art Corner Gallery, Cairo, Egypt 2016 The Key, organized by CARAVAN, Nile Art Gallery, Cairo, Egypt; London, England and New York, USA 2016 From Alexandria to India, Art Corner Gallery, Cairo, Egypt 2015 Generations, Art Corner Gallery, Cairo, Egypt 2011 Before and After the Revolution, Extra Gallery, Cairo, Egypt 2007 Alexandrian Faces, Bibliotheca Alexandrina, Alexandria, Egypt
2012 Ghada Amer, Musée d’Art Contemporain de Montréal, Montréal, Canada 2008 Love Has No End, Elisabeth A. Sackler Center for Feminist Art, Brooklyn Museum, New York 2006 Ghada Amer: Paintings and RFGA Drawings, curated by J. Poodt, Stedelijk Museum’s-Hertogenbosch, Netherlands 2004 Ghada Amer, curated by Teresa Farida El Gazzar Millet, Institut Valencià d’Art Modern, 2018 The Armory Show, Kalfayan Valencia, Spain Galleries, New York, USA 2002 Works by Ghada Amer, 2018 Art Dubai, Kalfayan Galleries, Dubai, UAE San Francisco Art Institute, 2018 Art Basel, Kalfayan Galleries, Hong San Francisco, USA 2000 Intimate Confessions, Tel Aviv Kong, China 2017 Kabinett, solo exhibition, Kalfayan Museum of Art, Tel Aviv, Israel Galleries, Art Basel, Miami Beach, USA 2000 Whitney Biennale, curated by M. Lincoln Andersen, Whitney Museum 2017 NP or the Possibilities of a Life, (curators: Maria-Thalia Carras and Olga of American Art, New York, USA Hatzidaki), Locus Athens, Greece 2016 Glory, solo exhibition, Kalfayan Hazem El Mestikawy Galleries, Athens, Greece 2018 Dak’Art Biennale, Dakar, Senegal 2015 Dream City, solo exhibition, 2017 Alif Beh Project Space, Art Jameel, Gypsum Gallery, Cairo, Egypt Dubai, UAE 2009 Rehang, curated by November 2016 Something Else, Darb 1718, Paynter and Sylvia Kouvali, parallel Cairo, Egypt event to the 11th International Istanbul 2015 Jameel Museum collection, Biennale, Grand Hotel De Londres, Dubai, UAE Istanbul, Turkey 2013 Time(less)signs, k/haus, 2009 The Ultimate Experience, curated Vienna, Austria 2012 Shokoul, solo exhibition, Sharjah by William Wells and Mayssa Fatouh, al-Riwaq Gallery, Bahrain Art Museum, Sharjah, UAE 2011 Jameel Prize short list artists’ exhibition, Victoria & Albert Museum, Ghada Amer 2018 Ghada Amer, Cheim & Read, New London, UK 2008 Grand Prize of the 13th Asia Art York, USA 2018 Ceramics, Knots, Thoughts, Scraps, Biennale, Dhaka, Bangladesh 2008 Collection of the North Carolina Dallas Contemporary, Dallas, USA 2018 Dark Continent, Centre de Création Museum of Art, Raleigh, USA 2004 Art Out Of the Suitcase, Art Contemporaine Olivier Debré, Tours, France Museum Olten, Switzerland
2001 Directed the short film Mahmoud Saïd 1997 Directed the short film al-Risha wa-l-Qalam (The Brush and the Pen) 1967 Second exhibition, Alexandria, Egypt 1962 First exhibition before enrolling at the Faculty of Fine Arts, Egypt
NOTHING VANISHES, EVERYTHING TRANSFORMS
2001 8th Cairo International Biennale, Cairo, Egypt 1999 Grand Prize of Installation, 11th Annual Youth Salon, Cairo, Egypt
2017 Tell Me the Story of All These Things, Villa Vassilieff, Paris, France 2014 Fotofest Biennale, Houston, USA 2013 Cut and Paste, Townhouse Gallery, Cairo, Egypt 2013 Terms and Conditions, Singapore Art Museum, Singapore 2010 Making a Man Out of Him, Townhouse Gallery, Cairo, Egypt 2010 Dak’Art Biennale, Dakkar, Senegal 2008 Zan’it al-Sittat, The Third Line, Dubai, UAE 2007 Contemporary Egyptian Art, the Museum of Modern Art, Bonn, Germany 2007 Out of Place, Sfeir-Semler Gallery, Beirut, Lebanon 2002 Dawn Portraits, Fortis Circustheater Gallery, The Hague, Netherlands
Islam Shabana Exhibitions: 2018 Talsam: Practicing Protection and Metaphysical Safety, Cairotronica: Egyptian Electronic and New Media Arts Symposium, the Arts Palace, Cairo Opera House, Egypt 2017 Architecture Of Memory: Hilde Marx, Iwalewahaus, Bayreuth, Germany 2015 Spaces, Cat Cologne, Germany 2014 breaTHING: Post-internet, PROFIT | PROPHET (Berlin Art Week), St.-Johannes-Evangelist-Kirche, Berlin, Germany 2013 The Nymphaeum, Townhouse Gallery, Cairo, Egypt
Performances: 2018 NaN, The Man Who Never Told a Lie, HAU3, CTM Festival, Berlin, Germany 2017 Delta3, Royal Northern College of Music, Manchester, UK 2016 C31S39, MASAFAT, Boiler Room, Cairo, Egypt 2016 C31S39, Städtische Galerie Delmenhorst, Delmenhorst, Germany 2015 My Home, My Rules, At Home In The House, HFK, Bremen, Germany
Khaled Hafez 2013/2015/2017 The 55th, 56th and 57th Venice Biennale, Italy 2015 6th Moscow Biennale, Russia 2011/2013/2015 State Museum of Art, Thessaloniki, Greece 2010/2012 Centre Georges Pompidou, Paris, France 2009 Saatchi Gallery, London, UK 2008 Guangzhou Triennale, China 2007 Tate Modern, London, UK 2007 7th Sharjah Biennale, UAE 2007 Kunstmuseum Bonn, Germany 2004/2006 6th and 7th Dak’Art Biennale, Dakar, Senegal
Magdi Mostafa 2018 Dak’Art Biennale, Dakar, Senegal 2016 Extract of Paradise, at Galerie Brigitte Schenk, Cologne, Germany 2015 Echoes and Reverberations, at Hayward Gallery (PS), London, UK 2014 Surface of Spectral Scattering, Townhouse Gallery, Cairo, Egypt 2013 Sound Element, Mathaf: Arab Museum of Modern Art (Project Space), Doha, Qatar 2013 Sharjah Biennale, Sharjah, UAE
2017 Bronze, solo exhibition, Karim Francis Art Gallery, Cairo, Egypt 2016 General Exhibition, Ministry of Culture, Cairo, Egypt 2015 Many Rivers to Cross, solo exhibition, ArtTalks, Cairo, Egypt 2013 I am Egyptian, solo exhibition, ArtTalks, Cairo, Egypt 2013 General Exhibition, Ministry of Culture, Cairo, Egypt 2012 Long Live Free Art, group exhibition, ArtTalks, Cairo, Egypt 2011/2012/2013 Youth Salon, Ministry of Culture, Cairo, Egypt 2010 Group exhibition, Boushahri Gallery, Kuwait 2009 Continuity, group exhibition, alMasar Gallery, Egypt 2018 Bahrain International Sculpture Symposium, Bahrain 2017/2015/2005 International Sculpture Symposium, Aswan, Egypt 2012 Sodic Symposium, Cairo, Egypt
Maher Dawoud Solo: 2017 Rebirth of the Rebirth, Fine Arts School Gallery, Cairo, Egypt 2015 White Headache, Ragheb Ayad Gallery, Gezira Centre for the Arts, Cairo, Egypt Group: 2015 the 56th International Art Exhibition, Egyptian Pavilion, Venice Biennale, Italy 2015 Mosaic Arts International, SAMA Exhibition, Philadelphia, USA 2015 MAANZ Symposium, speaker, Sydney, Australia 2014 10eme Rencontres Internationales
NOTHING VANISHES, EVERYTHING TRANSFORMS
de Mosaïques, Prix Picassiette, Chartres, France 2014 The City, BAMM Miniatures Exhibition, London, UK 2014 Mosaic Exhibition at the Glass Museum, Weigelsdorf, Austria 2013 International Painting Exhibition, World Federation for UNESCO, Culture of Cosmos, Patras, Greece
Malak Yacout Solo: 2018 Dialogue with 10 Nabrawy, Townhouse Gallery, Cairo, Egypt 2017 Temporal Semiotics, Townhouse Gallery, Cairo, Egypt Group: 2017 Kronprinzenpalais, Der 3. Berliner Herbstsalon, Germany 2017 Entre Quatro Paredes, Summaery 2017, Weimar Public Space, Germany 2017 Within Four Walls, Summaery 2017, Bauhaus-Universität Weimar, Germany 2017 A Priori Markings: RandomIntuitive Organizations of AbsentMinded Scribbles, 8th Cairo Video Festival, Institut français d’archéologie orientale, Cairo, Egypt 2016 (Un)titled, (Un)Sounds of Buchenwald, Momentum Gallery, Germany 2016 (Un)titled, (Un)Sounds of Buchenwald, Gedenkstätte Buchenwald, Germany 2016 A Priori Markings, Roznama 5, Medrar for Contemporary Art, Cairo, Egypt 2016 Artists as Marxists, Mohamed Abla Competition for Painting, Greek Campus Gallery, Cairo, Egypt
2016 Graphic Design II Exhibition, Parsons The New School, New York, USA 2015 Temporal Semiotics, Tracing Our Dragon’s Smell Senior Exhibition, AUC Sharjah Gallery, Cairo, Egypt 2015 Graphic Design I Exhibition, Parsons The New School, New York, USA 2014 Pull, Collaborative Student Exhibition, Bard College Exhibition Centre, New York, USA 2014 Sleep Work, BLINK II, Medrar for Contemporary Art, Cairo, Egypt 2013 Panopticon, Studio 3 Student Exhibition, AUC Sharjah Gallery, Cairo, Egypt 2013 Sleep Work, BLINK, AUC Sharjah Gallery, Cairo, Egypt
2017 A Gift to Those Who.., Live Works Performance Act Award Vol.5, 37° EDIZIONE DRODESERA, Italy 2017 Platform 17, group exhibition, Kunsthaus Glarus, Zurich, Switzerland 2016 Manifesta 11, Guild Master of Cabaret der Künstler, Zunfthaus Voltaire, Zurich, Switzerland 2013 Biennale Jogja XII, Yogyakarta, Indonesia 2013 Sharjah Biennale, curated by Yuko Hasegawa, Sharjah, UAE 2013 ISOE [In Search of Europe], curated by Daniela Swarowsky, Kunstraum Kreuzberg/Bethanien, Berlin, Germany 2011 VIDEOAKT International Video Biennale, Salt Gallery, Barcelona, Spain 2008 BJCM Biennale, Puglia, Italy
2017 A Green House, solo exhibition, Medrar for Contemporary Art, Cairo, Egypt 2017 Factur, group exhibition, Living Gallery, Groningen, the Netherlands 2014 Hadean, solo exhibition, Alchemy Art Cafe, Cairo, Egypt 2014 Mohamed Abla Selected Artists, group exhibition, Cairo Opera House, Cairo, Egypt 2014 Roznama, group exhibition, Medrar for Contemporary Art, Cairo, Egypt 2014 Parallel Vision, group exhibition, Darb 1718, Cairo, Egypt 2012 Group exhibition, Tache Art Gallery, Designopolis, Cairo, Egypt
2012 The Family, Artspace Gallery, Dubai, UAE 2008 Exhibition of Contemporary Art, Marseille, France 2006 30 Years of his Art, Gallery Hohman, Walsrode, Germany 2006 The Family, Zamalek Art Gallery, Cairo, Egypt 2006 Word into Art, The British Museum, London, UK 2005 Nostalgia, Cairo, Egypt 1998 The Nile, Goethe Institute, Cairo, Egypt 1997 1st Prize, Kuwait Biennale, Kuwait 1996 Cairo Biennale, Egypt 1979 First solo exhibition, Galerie Hohmann, Walsrode, Germany
2017 House of Wisdom, Collective Çukurcuma, Dzialdov, Berlin, Germany
Solo: 2015 Barzakh, Safarkhan Gallery,
Cairo, Egypt 2014 Muted, Safarkhan Gallery, Cairo, Egypt 2013 Mohamed Monaiseer, Gezira Centre for the Arts, Cairo, Egypt
Group: 2017 Nest, Riwaq Gallery, Bahrain 2015 Blind Date, Sfeir-Semler Gallery, Beirut, Lebanon 2015 Roznama 4, Medrar for Contemporary Art, Cairo, Egypt 2015/2016 The Bridge, travelling exhibition), Caravan Arts Europe, USA, Egypt 2014/2015 24th and 25th Youth Salon, Palace of the Arts, Cairo, Egypt 2013 Open Exhibition, Townhouse Gallery, Cairo, Egypt
Nadine H. 2013/2014 Why, solo exhibition, ArtTalks, Cairo, Egypt 2012 Tank Girl, solo exhibition, Gallery Misr, Cairo, Egypt 2011 Got Love, Art Dubai Art Space, Dubai, UAE 2010 I’m for Sale, solo exhibition, Safarkhan Art Gallery, Cairo, Egypt 2009 Sotheby’s Auction, London, UK 2008 Akl Aish, solo exhibition, Townhouse Gallery, Cairo, Egypt 2007 Dubai Dubai, curator, Total Arts at the Courtyard, Dubai, UAE 2007 Group exhibition, Creek Art Fair, Dubai, UAE 2005 Group exhibition, Touchstone Gallery Washington DC, USA 2005 Group exhibition, Salon des Artistes Independent, Grand Palais, Paris, France
NOTHING VANISHES, EVERYTHING TRANSFORMS
Nihal Wahby Solo: 2012/2015/2018 El Hanager Arts Centre, Cairo, Egypt Group: 2018 Famagusta Cultural Centre, Cyprus 2017 International Symposium and Exhibition, Luxor, Egypt 2013 6 Contemporary Arts, Cairo, Egypt 2010 General Exhibition, Cairo Museum of Modern Art, Cairo, Egypt 2008 Mashrabia Gallery of Contemporary Art, Cairo, Egypt
Said Badr 2016 Alexandrian Artists, Canada 2016 Generations, Mahmoud Saïd Hall, Alexandria, Egypt 2015 Contemporary Egyptian Art, Moscow, Russia 2013 Contemporary Egyptian Art, Vienna, Austria 2011 Contemporary Egyptian Art, Kuwait 2010 Arts Centre, Cairo, Egypt and Nigeria 2009 Second African Culture Festival, Algeria 2008 The Dream, Ahmed Shawki Museum, Cairo, Egypt 2008 Autumn Salon, Paris, France 2002 Alexandrian Artists, Egyptian Culture Centre, Rome, Italy 2001 Academy of Fine Arts, Carrara, Italy 1998 Egyptian Academy of Fine Arts, Rome, Italy
Sarkis Tossoonian 2010 3rd Sanaa Meeting of Fine Art, Sanaa, Yemen 2008 Art & Sport International Exhibition, Lausanne, Switzerland
2008 Autumn Salon, Paris, France 2007 24th Alexandria Biennale for Mediterranean Countries, Alexandria, Egypt 2006 Contemporary Egyptian Artists, Rumanian National Museum, Rumania 2005 Contemporary Egyptian Artists, Khartoum, Sudan 2004 Machinaka, sculpture competition, Kanazawa, Japan 2003 Alexandrian Artists, Egyptian Academy of Fine Arts, Rome, Italy 1996 Melkonian Educational Institute, Nicosia, Cyprus
Shady Elnoshokaty Solo: 2016 COLONY—Latitude, project, Gypsum Gallery, Cairo, Egypt 2010 Stammer, project, Darb 1718, Cairo, Egypt 2009 Stammer—A Lecture in Theory, Parrotta Contemporary Art, Stuttgart, Germany
2011 Executive curator for the Egyptian Pavilion at the Venice Biennale featuring revolutionary Egyptian artist Ahmed Basiony’s art project 30 Days of Running in the Space, Venice, Italy
Yasmine Elmeleegy 2017 Very Sustainable-Environmental Revelation, MOCA Yinchuan, China 2017 Topophilia exhibition, MEETINGS Festival, Nees, Denmark 2017 Urban Implosion, Acc Arts Space Network Exhibition, Acc Creation Space 2, Asia Culture Centre, Gwangju, South Korea 2016 12th Dak’Art Biennale of Contemporary African Art in Dakar, Senegal 2015 Bjcem Mediterranea 17, Young Artists Biennale, Italy 2015 Kevät Egyptistä, Äkkigalleria, Jyväskylä, Finland 2014 25th Annual Youth Salon, Cairo Opera House, Cairo, Egypt
Group: 2016 Language: World of Words, Signs, Gestures, curated by Collen M. Schmitz, Deutsches Hygiene-Museum in cooperation with the German Academy for Language and Poetry, Darmstadt, Germany 2015 Nation 25-Nationless Pavilion, collective project, curated by Elena Abbiatici, Sara Alberani and Caterina Pecchioli, the 56th Venice Biennale, Venice, Italy 2014 View from Inside: Contemporary Arab Photography, Video and Mixed Media Art, Fotofest 2014 Biennale, Houston, USA 2010 Remapping Region (unexpected), Kunst Bochum, Bochum, Germany
NOTHING VANISHES, EVERYTHING TRANSFORMS
ARABIC SUMMARY ART D’ÉGYPTE
والــذي هــو بالفعــل متحــف مفتــوح احتضــن كنــوز الســنوات الفاتنــة فــي مصــر الحديثــة خالل ســنواته األولى .شــيده الرســام والمســافر، األميــر محمــد علــي توفيــق ،والــذي يعــرف بجمــع األعمــال الفنيــة بتجميــع وعــرض مجموعــة فريــدة مــن المؤثــرات الفارســية والعثمانيــة والمملوكيــة و"الروكوكــو" والمغربيــة فــي قصــر المنيــل العريــق. أنفــق األميــر محمــد علــي ثــروات للمحافظــة علــى التراث فقام بشــراء قطــع ال مثيــل لهــا مــن القصــور الزائلــة فــي بــاد الشــام تضمنــت ـقوفا دقيقــة مــن الخشــب والصــدف وأبــواب مــن عصــر المماليــك سـ ً ومصابيــح زجاجيــة فاتنــة .ومــن الســراي علــى مضيــق البوســفور جمــع الخزفيــات والقطــع األثريــة وكلــف بتنفيــذ نسـ ً ـخا مماثلــة لألشــياء التــي لــم يســتطع الحصــول عليهــا إلدراجهــا ضمــن المجموعــة ،كل ذلــك فــي محاولــة للحفــاظ علــى آثــار تراثيــة بصريــة وثقافيــة .ثــم كلــف األميــر الشــيخ محمــد عفيفــي بتنفيــذ الكــزار الشــرقي الفخــم. إلــى جانــب أعمــال الخشــب األرابيســك واألركان التركيــة واألوبــال تقــدر بثمــن ،كانــت أرضيــات الفارســي وتحــف الســيراميك التــي ال ّ القصــر الرخاميــة والخشــبية مغطــاة بســجادات شــرقية ثمينة ،ليشــكل بذلــك إحــدى أهــم المجموعــات فــي العالــم بعــد متحــف فيكتوريــا وألبــرت بلنــدن .أمــا الجــدران ،فقــد تــم تطعيمهــا بمطــرزات الحريــر وصـ ً ـورا للعائلــة المالكــة المصريــة والتركيــة ،بعضهــا رســمها الفنــان التركــي الشــهير هدايــت .أمــا التصميــم الخارجــي للحديقــة المعروفــة باســم "حديقــة األلــف مــن األطايــب" فهــو تغــذى مــن تنــوع رحــات األميــر إلــى وجهــات غيــر معتــادة وجذابــة .تتــراوح أعمــار أشــجار البانيــان فــي الحديقــة بيــن 500-400ســنة. تتجــاور األعمــال المعاصــرة والتاريخيــة العتيقــة جنبــا إلــى جنــب فــي هــذا المعــرض لتُ غمــس المشــاهد فــي تجربــة بصريــة تتجــاوز المعنــى وخطيــة مــرور الزمــن .هذا القصر اليوم يجســد قطعة البســيط للتاريــخ ّ أثريــة مجمــدة وســط التحضــر الــذي نمــا حولــه ويهــدد بابتالعــه ،والــذي يســتدعي األســئلة التــي نواجههــا اليــوم عــن واقــع المدينــة .يمتلــك الفنانــون حريــة التعبيــر والتواصــل والتصــدي والتســاؤل أو الروايــة عــن هــذا التحــول والســمو الــذي نعبــر بــه مــن ماضينــا إلــى الحاضــر والمســتقبل .تعكــس هــذه المجموعــة مــن األعمــال الفنيــة المعاصــرة المتواجــدة وســط الســجاد التركــي والثريــات الزجاجيــة اســتيحاء كل مــن الفنانيــن مــن قاعــات القصــر بأعمالهــم .وهكــذا ،فــإن األعمــال الفنيــة تــذوب فــي محيطهــا تمــزج األرواح الماضيــة بتــرادف مــع الحاضــر. كونــه فنــان وراعــي حقيقــي للفنــون والثقافــة ،كان لــدى األميــر رؤيــة لمصــر لتبقــى مهــد الحضــارات وتســاهم فــي التــراث العالمــي. يســتحضر هــذا المعــرض روعة واحاســيس القاهــرة :المدينة العظيمة التــي كانــت فــي يــوم مــن األيــام -ومــا زالــت -تُ حتفــل بدفئهــا وحيــاة شــوارعها الحيويــة .إنهــا هيبــة المدينــة فــي األزمنــة الحضريــة المعاصــرة المطــاردة بخيــط مــن الحنيــن الــذي يمــد إلــى الزمــان التــي كانــت بــه القاهــرة مركــزا للعالــم الحديــث هــي مــا يجســد المحــرك الرئيســي للفنانيــن ومــا يغــذي عمليــة االبــداع ،ويحيــي المعــرض ماضــي القاهــرة الصاخــب ويلقــي الضــوء علــى هــذا المــأوى الفخــم. NOTHING VANISHES, EVERYTHING TRANSFORMS
كلمة منسقة المعرض
نادين عبد الغفار مؤسسة "آرت دي أيجيبت" والقائمة على المعرض
ال شيء يتالشى ،كل شيء يتحول يأتي معرض "ال شيء يتالشى ،كل شيء يتحول" منغمســا بالتاريــخ المشــترك ومفترقــات الطــرق والفضــاءات والمســاحات وتحوالتهــا ،مسـ ً ـلطا الضــوء علــى مجموعــة متنوعــة مــن ممارســات الفــن المعاصــر المصريــة. فــي طريقــه الكتشــاف أفــكار حــول حيثيــات األماكــن والفضــاءات والمــواد الملموســة والتاريــخ ،يطــرأ المعــرض الــى التفكيــر فــي الفروقــات مــا بيــن مفهــوم الفعــل االفتراضــي للتالشــي ،ومفهــوم فعــل التحــول .إن تنــوع أســاليب التعبيــر وتعددهــا فــي الفــن المصري المعاصــر يســفحا لنــا المجــال لتشــريح وتفكيــك مفاهيــم الزمــان ً حميمــا أو شــخصي أو والمــكان بدقــة .والمــكان هنــا قــد يكــون حضــري أو ملمــوس ،كمــا الزمــان قــد يكــون تابــع للحقيقــة أو الخيــال أو االفتــراض أو المجــاز. إن موقــع مصــر المركــزي واالســتراتيجي بيــن الشــرق والغــرب والشــمال والجنــوب اجتــذب المســتعمرين والمغامريــن والتجــار والغــزاة علــى حــد ســواء حيــث اســتقر كل منهــم لمــدة متفاوتــة مــن الزمــن قــد تبلــغ يومــا أو عامــا أو عــدة قــرون .كل عنصــر يضيــف طبقــة جديــدة الــى نســيج البلــد الثقافــي واالجتماعــي المتداخــل، مشـ ً ـيدا بذلــك منظومــة ذات ثقافــات متعــددة وهجينــة .وهكــذا مزيــج يمنــح البــاد خصوصيــة ثقافيــة فريــدة ومميــزة ،تتســم بالديناميكيــة والتطــور المســتمر .يتكــون نســيج هــذا الهيــكل مــن حضــارات هــي أشــبه بقطــع الفسيفســاء التــي تتجمــع ســوية بأعجوبــة ودقــة لتشــيد جســما متماســكا تربطــه خيــوط تجمــع بيــن الديانــات الســماوية الثــاث (اليهوديــة والمســيحية واإلســام) .لنــدرج األساســية مــن هــذه الحضــارات ،علــى ســبيل المثــال ال الحصــر ،هنــاك الحضــارة المصريــة القديمــة وحضــارة البحــر األبيــض المتوســط وتلك األفريقيــة والنوبية والعربيــة والفارســية والفينيقيــة واآلراميــة والعثمانيــة وحضــارة المماليــك واليونانيــة واألرمنيــة واإليطاليــة والفرنســية والبريطانيــة.
يتأثــر الفنانــون المصريــون المعاصــرون المصريــون فــي ممارســاتهم اإلبداعيــة بطريقــة مباشــرة أو غيــر مباشــرة بتاريخهــم العتيــق والحديث وبالســياق الــذي نشــأ بــه هــؤالء والــذي هــو ملــيء بتاريــخ االســتعمار والقصــور والمتاحــف وروايــات عــن المملــكات التــي تحولــت إلــى جمهوريــات .هــذه االماكــن لــم تختفــي حتــى اآلن ،ال بــل هــي فــي تحــول دائــم .كمــا وتتبــع األفــراد والســلوكيات والمواقــف والمصالــح والمثــل العليــا القاعــدة األزليــة عينهــا عــن دوام الحركــة والتحــول مــن مرحلــة إلــى أخــرى إمــا بطريقــة عضويــة أو بتحــول تدريجــي مــن حالــة إلــى أخــرى. ســيتم إحيــاء "ال شــيء يتالشــى ،كل شــيء يتحــول" فــي قصــر المنيــل الراقــي الــذي يمثــل جوهــرة تاريخيــة فــي تــراث مصــر الثقافي ART D’ÉGYPTE
تكون أحيانً ا ضعيفة ،وأحيانً ا قوية حاملة
المصرية للفنون بروما عام 2006ثم مركز
استخدام خامات متعددة بجانب الخزف في
سمة أسلوبية حقيقية تعكس التحديث
الجزيرة للفنون عام .2008وتتابعت بعد ذلك
تبعا العمل الفني ،وذلك في فراغ ماً ،
المستمر لألساليب التعبيرية التي يتبعها
العروض الستكمال "المدينة النحتية" بكامل
لفكرة العمل .ويركز أغلبية األعمال على الفن
دائما الفنان خالل السنوات األخيرة ،والتي ً
مفرداتها والزال يعمل على هذا المشروع
المفاهيمي في إظهار الناحية التعبيرية.
ما تعكس في خلفيات األلوان انفعاالت غير
عادية ال نهاية لها وتتماشي وفوق كل ذلك
مع األسلوب الفني والتصورات الحية للخبرة الثقافية التي يحملها الفنان أحمد فريد في
علياء كامل فنانة سويسرية معاصرة من
مسيرته المهنية كفنان حتى اآلن ونستشعر
أصول مصرية تعيش في جنيف .أتمت
األشكال المجردة وفن الكوالج من األعمال
من خالل لوحات أحمد فريد مالمح تأثره
دراستها في كل من "سنترال سانت مارتنز"
الفوتوغرافية القديمة في حين قدمت
كثيرا ما عصمت داوستاشي هو فنان ً
تغير أسلوبه .تالعب عمله المبكر مع
بالعديد من الفنانين أمثال نيكوال دي ستيل،
بلندن ،وكلية "ثياتر سيتس" بسويسرا ،قبل
لوحاته صفائف غير عقالنية إلى حد ما
وديكونينج ،وجاذبية سري في بحثهم عن
أن تتعلم أساليب فنية مختلفة من خالل
ولكنها رمزية للفائف وحزم ألوانها قوية.
الفن التصويري الذي يقوم على األلوان
التدريب بالعديد من االستوديوهات الفنية.
ثم انتقل داوستاشي إلى التصوف وبدأ
وتحقيق التوازن بين األجزاء ومستوياتها
أعمالها تتراوح في حجمها بين المتناهية
خلق أشكال ثالثية األبعاد باستخدام العناصر
المختلفة .وقد أثر هذا المزيج الرائع بين
الصغر واللوحات كبيرة الحجم ،سواء على
المهملة للتعليق الالذع على القضايا
الفن الغربي واإلشارات المصرية في جعل
الورق أو على القماش ،وباستخدام ألوان
االجتماعية .ولد داوستاشي عام ،١٩٤٣
اإلبداع الفني الخاص بالفنان أحمد فريد ومتفردا وسط المشهد الفني شيئً ا متميزً ا ً
األكريليك أو الزيت أو الوسائط األخرى.
وبعد مرور عامين من تخرجه من قسم النحت
ورسوماتها تكون إما بالحبر أو باأللوان
بكلية الفنون الجميلة في اإلسكندرية عام
المعاصر ،مما أنتج لوحات تتسم بشخصية
المائية والصوف .تهتم كامل في أعمالها
١٩٦٧أسس "جماعة التحول" .عمل الفنان
شخوصا بتصوير تأمالتها في البشر ،سواء ً
كمشرف معارض لوزارة الثقافة في متحف
أسست خصائصها بخبرة خالصة بالغة ُ فنان استطاع الجمع بين العالمين الغربي
منفردة أو مجموعات .وتعكس ذلك التطور
محمود سعيد في اإلسكندرية؛ وفي
المستمر لهويتنا في هذا العالم والذي
مديرا لمتحف الفنون عام ١٩٩٣تم تعيينه ً
نحدوه بأفكارنا .تلك المسائل الوجودية...
الجميلة في اإلسكندرية ،وأشرف على
من نحن ،وما الذي نؤمن به ،وما الذي
تنظيم بينالي اإلسكندرية ١٨لدول البحر
بدأت ممارسات أحمد قرعلي الفنية بعد
نرغبه؟ كما عملت في تصميم العالمات
تخرجه من كلية الفنون الجميلة سنه 1994
التجارية ،وتعاونت مع مجالت ومؤسسات
بمشاركته في صالون الشباب ،المعرض
أيضا ومنظمات إنسانية .ابتكرت كامل ً
نشر داوستاشي مجلة "الفن التشكيلي"
السنوي الذي تنظمه وزارة الثقافة المصرية،
شخصية مرحة أسمتها "علياء الصغيرة"،
فضال عن العديد من الكتب ،من بينها
حيث حصل على العديد من الجوائز والذي
لتكون صورتها الكرتونية ،وتستعرض من
سلسلة بعنوان "الكتالوج ،"٦٧وكذلك كتاب
أثرى لديه الحس باالحترافية مما دفعه بعد
خاللها خبراتها اليومية بأسلوب كوميدي
تذكاري بعنوان "عالم داوستاشي" بمناسبة
ذلك للمشاركة في العديد من المعارض
دوما، ساخر .تتحرك كامل ومعها أدواتها ً
عيد ميالده ال .٥٠وأشرف أيضا على نشر
المحلية والدولية .كان عرضه الخاص األول
حتى تجسد اإللهام أينما وحيثما راودها.
مجلدين؛ "أقالم السهو" و"اإلنسان
سمبوزيوم أسوان الدولي للنحت بداية أخرى للدخول في عالم السمبوزيومات
ضياء الدين داود
ضياء الدين داود فنان مصري ولد في
عن النقد الفني .كما نفذ داوستاشي
الدولية للنحت في العديد من دول العالم.
دمياط عام .1968تخرج في كلية الفنون
سلسلة من األفالم ،وذلك باستخدام
وكانت جائزه الدولة لإلبداع التي حصل عليها
التطبيقية ،قسم الخزف ،عام .1994يعمل
كل من األفالم الملونة ،والتي يضيف
الفنان عام 2005للسفر إلى إيطاليا نقلة
بكلية الفنون التطبيقية أستاذ مساعد
إليها الخطوط واأللوان والخدوش .شارك
بجاليري المشربية عام ،2002كما كان
والتطور" .وشملت اعماله األخرى القصص القصيرة والشعر وكتابة السيناريو ،فضال
كبيرة في حياته حيث بدأ مشروعه المسمى
بقسم الخزف .ومنذ عام 1994حتى اآلن،
داوستاشي منذ الستينات في العديد
"المصرخانكية" ،وهو إعادة تطوير العمارة
يشارك في حركة الفن التشكيلي بمصر في
من المعارض الجماعية وعقد أكثر من 150
واضعا تصور اإلسالمية بشكل نحتي ً
المعارض والمسابقات المحلية والدولية.
خاصا .وفي عام ١٩٩٦منحت وزارة معرضا ً ً
بدءا من بوابات المدينة. لمدينة كاملة ً
تتناول أغلب أعماله الخزف من مفهوم
الثقافة داوستاشي منحة الدولة للفنانين
وتم عرض هذا المعرض في األكاديمية
التجهيز في الفراغ ،والذي يعتمد على
NOTHING VANISHES, EVERYTHING TRANSFORMS
خالل مشواره الفني كنحات استخدامه
عاما في بيروت عام .2003أمضى بدري ً
ولد آدم حنين ،أحد أبرز النحاتين المصريين
لخامات مختلفة ،بما في ذلك تلك الهشة
( )2017/2016ضمن برنامج "أشكال ألوان"
الراهنين ،في القاهرة عام ١٩٢٩وتخرج من
غير المتداولة ،ومنها الطين وسعف النخيل
التابع لـ "هوم ورك سبيس" .وهو يعيش
قسم النحت بجامعة حلوان عام .1953حصل
(الخوص) ،بل ومنها المستهلك المهمل
ويعمل في القاهرة .تتميز موضوعات بدري
حنين على منحة لمدة عامين للدراسة في
مثل إطارات السيارات .وتميزت أعماله
بكونها صغيرة للغاية ولكنها حاضرة في
أتيليه األقصر ،التي كان قد أنشأها الفنان
بتقديم مجسمات جمالية تبرز البنية والحجم
روتين الحياة اليومية وذات أهمية كبيرة .وهو
المصري البارز والدبلوماسي محمد ناجي
على حد سواء ،عالوة على إحساس بريء
مهتم بدراسة تأثير الموضوعات غير المقننة
قبل ذلك بعشر سنوات لتعزيز تعليم فن
بالعزلة يعكس صفات الصراحة والوضوح
في اللغة ،بتفكيك قطبي المجاز والتورية.
المصري القديم .وقد أثرت هذه التجربة
والحس الشاعري .وقد استلهم شخوصه
ومن خالل عملية إعادة تمثيل تستعين
بعمق على حياة وفن حنين وحصل على
من بشر وحيوانات من بلدته األم ،وقدم بها
باإلسقاط والكتابة والرسم والطباعة ثالثية
جائزة األقصر في عامي ١٩٥٤و،١٩٥٦
مبهرا لمنحوتات صغيرة مصغرا استعراضا ً ً ً
األبعاد ،يفقد الموضوع قابليته للتسمية.
وفي عام ١٩٥٨حصل حنين على دبلوم في
تنشر األلفة وتشجع المتلقي على التفاعل
ويبوح الموضوع المشتبك بخلل في
الممارسات المتقدمة من أكاديمية ميونخ
معها .ونجح عسقالني في تقديم منحوتات
التواصل أو بإمكانية اكتساب لفظ جديد.
(ألمانيا) ،وفي عام 1971انتقل حنين إلى
الخوص التي اشتهر بها باالستعانة بأساليب
باريس وبحث على مر عقدين في الرسم
بسيطة ،أشبه بتضفير خصالت الشعر،
وفي التراث الفني المصري القديم والمواد
واعتمد على األلوان الطبيعية لسعف
ولد أحمد فريد بالقاهرة عام ١٩٥٠حيث
التقليدية .وفي الفترة الممتدة بين عامي
النخيل .ومن خالل أعماله ،تمكن عسقالني
واحدا من ويعد فريد ً حالياُ . يعيش ويعمل ً
١٩٨٩و ١٩٩٨ترأس حنين فريق التصميم
من تحدي الحدود التقليدية التي تفصل بين
الفنانين الذين يؤمنون بالتعلم الذاتي
الذي عمل على ترميم تمثال أبو الهول في
الفن والحرفة ،وقدم إسهامه في مسألة
وقد تدرب بجدية واجتهاد في العديد من
الجيزة ،مما شجعه على العودة إلى مصر
الممارسة الفنية المعاصرة بما تحمله من
استوديوهات الفنانين المرموقين بفلورنسا
في عام ١٩٩٦ليؤسس في العام نفسه
تعقيدات .فنجد أن أفراس النهر صغيرة
وميالن بإيطاليا واطلع عن قرب على معظم
سمبوزيوم أسوان الدولي للنحت .وقد
الحجم ،التي مثلها بخصائص مجسمة،
المدارس الفنية المعاصرة من خالل سفرة
حصل حنين على وسام الدولة المصرية
تمثل فضائل ورذائل من ذكريات الواقع
وتنقله المستمر إلى اوروبا وامريكا وجنوب
وجائزة الجدارة وجائزة مبارك للفنون .وقد
المعاصر ،وتستدعي في بعض األحيان
أفريقيا نتيجة مسؤولياته المهنية المتعددة
ُعرضت أعماله في معهد العالم العربي في
خياالت البدائية واألجداد ،وفي أحيان أخرى
على مدي اربعة عقود .حصل على درجة
باريس ومتحف المتروبوليتان للفنون في
مادية طبيعة بلدته األم .ويقدم مجسمات
البكالوريوس في العلوم االجتماعية وعمل
نيويورك والمتحف العربي للفن الحديث
لشخصيات بدينة ذات رؤوس صغيرة؛
في مجال اإلدارة والتسويق في بداية
في ميونيخ ،وكذلك في ASBبالدوحة
آباء وأبناء وبنات وأزواج يظهرون إيماءات
وبلندن وروما .وتُ درج أعمال حنين في
ودودة ،فيسهم هذا التناقض في األحجام
عامة في كل من معهد العالم مجموعات ّ
في إشاعة أجواء مرحة حول العمل ،وقد
بدأ شغف فريد للفن التشكيلي مع
العربي ومتحف الفن متحف الفن المصري
يفسرها المتلقي بأنها شكل من أشكال
سفره إلى الخارج في مطلع السبعينيات،
الحديث بالقاهرة ومؤسسة برجيل في
النقد االجتماعي أو الحنين لمشاعر الماضي
حيث عاصر تغيرات الثقافة األوروبية في
الشارقة باإلمارات العربية المتحدة .وتكمن
التي يفتقدها اليوم .شارك أحمد عسقالني
ما بعد أحداث مايو عام ١٩٦٨وظاهرة
مجموعة كبيرة من أعماله في متحفه الخاص
في العديد من المعارض في جميع أنحاء
"صيف الحب" في أمريكا وأجواء احتفاالت
في منطقة الحرانية بالجيزة.
العالم؛ في مصر وفرنسا وإيطاليا وهولندا،
وطبعا األحداث السياسية "وودستوك" ً
أحمد عسقالني ( )1978من مواليد نجع حمادي في صعيد مصر ،ويعيش ويعمل حاليا في القاهرة .تشي أعماله عن ارتباط ً واضح وقوي بالخامات التقليدية وأساليب
وعرضت أعماله في بينالي روما ودول
واالجتماعية المصرية .وتأثرت لوحات
المتوسط الرابع ،وفي سراييفو ،البوسنة،
أحمد فريد بالرمزية التي تعزو إلى األصل
في عام ،2011كما مثل مصر في بينالي
التجريدي التعبيري؛ حيث األشكال التي بالكاد
تكون مرئية ولكنها تعكس ما بداخل الفنان
من انفعاالت حقيقية .إن لوحاته البسيطة ذات الظالل المتباعدة والشخصيات الشاردة
الحرف اليدوية الضاربة جذورها في أعماق
حصل أحمد بدري على درجة البكالوريوس
والتي تكاد تكون وليدة نسيج من األلوان
وعرف عن عسقالني الحضارة المصريةُ .
في التربية الفنية من جامعة حلوان بالقاهرة
المختلطة والسابحة في فيضه وتموجاته،
ولغات البرمجة بالمخططات السحرية،
موكا ومتحف أوبساال للفن في السويد
أعماله الصوتية عبر العديد من محطات
والعمليات الرقمية بالكيمياء .ويمزج عمل
ومتحف رايكس فولكنكوند في ليدن وتايت
اإلذاعة العالمية ،ومنها "صوت دوكيومنتا"؛
شبانة بين وسائط مختلفة ،ولكنه يركز في
موديرن في لندن ومتحف كونست في بون
برنامج دوكيومنتا اإلذاعي الثالث عشر ،كاسل،
اآلونة األخيرة على العروض السمعية/
ومتحف الدولة للفنون في ثيسالونيكي
في العام .2017
البصرية .وقدم عمله في العديد من
ومتحف هربرت ف .جونسون للفن في إيثاكا
المعارض والمهرجانات الجماعية فيما بين
ومتحف كوينز والمتحف الجديد في نيويورك
مصر وألمانيا ،بما في ذلك أسبوع برلين
وكذلك في مركز جورج بومبيدو في باريس.
ولد الفنان ماجد ميخائيل في سوهاج بصعيد
الفني ،وكايروترونيكا -سمبوزيوم القاهرة
حاز حافظ على منحتي "فولبرايت" عام ٢٠٠٥
مصر عام .1982درس بكلية الفنون الجميلة
لإللكترونيات والوسائط الجديدة .وفي عام
و"روكفلر" عام . ٢٠٠٩في عام ٢٠١١تم
بالزمالك وتخرج من قسم النحت الميداني
،2017ظهر مشروعه التعاوني السمعي/
ترشيحه واختياره على الالئحة المختصرة لجائزة
عام .2004التحق بأتيليه الفنان الكبير آدم حنين
البصري في "بويلر روم" ضمن مهرجان
الفن األفريقي السيادية ،وفي عام ٢٠١٢تم
بعد تخرجه وحتى عام ،2010وكانت فترة لها
"مسافات" .كما اختير العرض "∆ "3من قبل
ترشيحه لجائزة "بيكتيه" وهي جائزة عالمية
تأثير كبير على مشواره الفني .حصل على
مهرجان الواقع االفتراضي وقدم في الكلية
في التصوير الفوتوغرافي واالستدامة.
منحة التفرغ من وزارة الثقافة المصرية من
مؤخرا الملكية الشمالية للموسيقى .وشارك ً
كما حاز حافظ على جائزتين في بينالي داكار
2008وحتى .2011وقد عمل خالل فترة
في "ميوزيك ماكرز هاكالب" حيث عمل على
في السنغال في عام ٢٠٠٤وبينالي باماكو
تفرغه على استخدام خامات مختلفة :الجبس
عرض سمعي/بصري باستخدام تقنيات تعلم
للصورة في مالي عام .٢٠١١
والبرونز والحجر وكذلك كان للرسم بالحبر على
حيا في مهرجان "سي اآللة ،وقدم العرض ً تي ام" ببرلين.
خالد حافظ هو فنان تشكيلي مقره القاهرة؛
الورق دورا هاما في أعماله.
يعمل مجدي مصطفى على تكوينات
ويهتم ميخائيل بفنون الحضارات القديمة
ومشروعات أداء ومجسمات متعددة الوسائط
ً محاول فهم عالقتها بالحياة اليومية المختلفة
وأعمال تجريبية صوتية تعتمد باألساس على
والموروث الشعبي عند المصريين .أخذ هذا
تمتد ممارسته عبر وسائط مختلفة هي
البحث الميداني ،وذلك منذ العام ،2003
االتجاه يتبلور بدءا من .2013بدأ الفنان منذ
الرسم والتركيبات والتصوير الفوتوغرافي
وقدم أعماله في معارض فردية وجماعية،
عام 2016التركيز والبحث في الفن المصري
والفيديو والفيلم التجريبي .ولد حافظ
منها "حواس جديدة" في مركز "زد كي ام"
القديم ،وطور من اسلوبه التجريدي ليعبر عنه
في القاهرة عام ١٩٦٣ودرس الطب وتابع
للفنون والوسائط في كارلسروه ،ألمانيا ،عام
بشكل معاصر وبلغته الخاصة .يهتم ميخائيل
الدروس المسائية لدراسة الفنون الجميلة
،2016و"أصداء ودوي" في غاليري هايوارد،
أيضا بالعنصر المعماري في أعماله وهذا ً
في الثمانينات .بعد حصوله على درجة
لندن ،عام ،2015و"سطح تالشي الطيف"
ما يشغل تفكيره في هذه الفترة ،وبالتحديد
الماجستير في الطب عام ١٩٩٢تخلى عن
في تاون هاوس غاليري ،القاهرة ،عام ،2014
المجسمات الصرحية والميدانية ويبحث أيضا
ممارسة الطب بعد فترة وجيزة لمباشرة مهنته
و"جزء من الجنة" في غاليري بريجيت شينك،
في إمكانية تصميمها كمباني مستقلة.
الفنية .حصل بعد ذلك على درجة الماجستير
كولونيا ،عام ،2016وكذلك بينالي الشارقة
في الفنون الجميلة في الوسائط الجديدة
الحادي عشر عام ،2013حيث نال جائزة
يستوحي ميخائيل أعماله من عاملين
والفنون الرقمية من معهد "ترانسارت" في
البينالي ،وبينالي يوجيا في إندونيسيا عام
رئيسيين :العمارة والكلمة الهيروغليفية
نيويورك وجامعة الدانوب في كريمز في
،2014وبينالي ليون ،بينالي دكار ،السنغال،
المنقوشة ،فيتحول العمل النحتي من مجرد
النمسا .وظهرت أعمال حافظ في بينالي
عام ،2018وليون ،2015و"عنصر الصوت"
تمثال مشخص إلى تكوين مجسم في غاية
فينيسيا ٥٥و ٥٦و ٥٧وفي بينالي ماردين
في المتحف العربي للفنون المعاصرة،
من البساطة والتجرد ،مستوحى من العمارة
٣وبينالي موسكو ٦وبينالي الثالثي األول
الدوحة في ،2013و"خاليا الصوت" في
المصرية القديمة والقبطية واإلسالمية،
في ريو دي جانيرو وبينالي ديل سور األول
معهد الثقافات اإلسالمية في باريس
وكذلك مجسمات مستوحاة من الكتابات
في كراكاس وبينالي فوتوفيست ١٥في
عام ،2017ومشروعات دبي الفنية،2012 ،
والنقوش الهيروغليفية .يعتبر ميخائيل اللغة
هيوستن وبينالي هافانا ١١وبينالي باماكو
ومهرجان أبوظبي للفنون عام .2017وكذلك
الهيروغليفية بمثابة كنز كبير ،تلك اللغة التي
للصورة ٩وبينالي ميركوسول ٨في بورتو
أمضي فترات إقامة فنية في كل من متحف
كانت كلماتها عبارة عن رسومات ،وتجد في
أليغري ومانيفيستا ٨في مورسي وبينالي
برونكس في نيويورك ،داد برلين ،مؤسسة
النقش الواحد كلمة يمكن تجسيدها في عمل
القاهرة ١٢وبينالي داكار وبينالي سنغافورة
دلفينا في لندن ،سيتاديارتي في إيطاليا،
فني معبر ،وكأنك تنحت الكلمة ذاتها.
االول وبينالي الشارقة وترينالي قوانغتشو
ومركز الوسائط المتعددة في برشلونة،
وبينالي ثيسالونيكي؛ وكذلك في هيروشيما
وقدمت وسمبوزيوم أالنيكا في روسياُ .
NOTHING VANISHES, EVERYTHING TRANSFORMS
درجة معينة من الرقة والحساسية التي
حكاية مغايرة ،حيث تلعب على أوتار الذاكرة
فريدة الجزار من مواليد اإلسكندرية عام
يتجاهلها التشييء النمطي للمرأة .وتقوم
الجماعية واأليقونغرافية المشتركة ،فتمتزج
.1975وهي فنانة مصرية يونانية مقيمة
عامر باستمرار باستكشاف الثنائيات في عالم
الحقب التاريخية وتتالشى الحواجز الثقافية
في أثينا باليونان .عاشت أعوامها األولى
والحسمية عبر مضطرب ،وتواجه لغة العداء ّ
في أعمالها .وألنها ذات أسلوب متعدد
في دولة الكويت ،قبل أن تنتقل مع عائلتها
روايات مشوشة من الشوق والحب .ويتناول
حمل القطعة الفنية بأكثر من الطبقات ُي ّ
إلى اليونان .وبعد ذلك انتقلت إلى لندن
عملها أوال وقبل كل شيء الطابع الغامض
معنى ورسالة ،فإن هدى لطفي تستعين
لمدة خمسة أعوام ،حيث أكملت دراستها
والمنتقل للمفارقة التي تنشأ عند البحث عن
بنطاق عريض من الخامات والمواد واأللوان
بجامعة كنجستون والكلية الملكية للفنون.
تعريفات ملموسة للشرق والغرب والمؤنث
والكوالج والتكوينات ،وصارت تستخدم
وفي الفترة من 2003إلى ،2007شاركت في
والمذكر ،والفن والحرف .تأخذ عامر في
مؤخرا برامج مونتاج الصور والفيديو .وينصب ً
تأسيس فريق "وردة" اإلبداعي .كما تعاونت
لوحاتها ومنحوتاتها ومشاريع الحدائق العامة
تركيزها في معظم أعمالها على جسد األنثى
في إصدار مطبوعات ودوريات لصالح كل من
التي شاركت بها مفاهيم تقليدية للهوية
ً وحياتيا .وهي تقدم لنا قوالب تاريخيا وتناوله ً
مطبعة جامعة "كورنيل"" ،مارتيس بوكس"،
الثقافية والتجريد واألصولية الدينية وتقلبها
عرائس في سياقات متنوعة ،وبها تستكشف
"تايم آوت أثينس" ،ووزارة البيئة اليونانية
رأسا على عقب. ً
تلك األدوار المتعددة التي تلعبها المرأة
أثينا ،والمسرح الوطني في لندن ،وغيرها. عقدت الجزار ندوات وورش عمل وجلسات
حازم المستكاوي فنان مصري سويسري،
جديدا ومنطلقات مفاهيمية أسلوبا لطفي ً ً
فنية في معاهد دولية في أثينا .وأتمت
مولود في العام ،1965وحائز على
متفردة ،فهي تجيد عرض القوى االجتماعية
إقامات فنية في معرض "تاون هاوس"
بكالوريوس التربية الفنية من جامعة المنيا.
الثقافية وتعرض ألفكار التقييد والكبت التي
بالقاهرة ومعرض "الرواق" في البحرين.
وهو نحات مصري رسخ لنفسه طريقة وأداء
سبق لها أن المستها في أعمالها عن جسد
بمناسبة أولمبياد 2004التي أقيمت في
عالميا ،وضمن مجموعات وعرضت أعمالها ً ُ
مختلف في فن النحت من خالل العديد من
مؤسساتية منها مؤسسة "البرجيل" الفنية،
المعارض والمهرجانات التي اشترك فيها منذ
في الثقافة البصرية :كونها منتج نشط لها وذات رموز حاضرة فيها .ونجد في عمل هدى
ومجموعات خاصة في أوروبا والواليات
العام ،1989عالوة على العديد من المعارض
وتعتبر هدى لطفي من أهم الفنانات
المتحدة ومنطقة الشرق األوسط وشمال
الشخصية والجماعية منذ العام 1991وحتى
التشكيليات المصريات المعاصرات .ونالت
أفريقيا وحوض المتوسط .ومنذ عام ،2011
اآلن في كل من مصر وسويسرا والنمسا
درجة الدكتوراه في التاريخ والثقافة اإلسالمية
تعرض أعمال فريدة الجزار في معارض
وألمانيا واليابان ،وكذلك الشارقة والدوحة
من جامعة "ماكجيل" في مونتريال ،كندا
كالفايان (أثينا – ثيسالونيكي).
ودبي .عاش المستكاوي وعمل في مصر،
( ،)1983لتحاضر في الجامعة األمريكية
حتى تلقى منحة فنية في العام 1994في
في القاهرة حتى عام .2010وشرعت
ولدت غادة عامر في القاهرة عام .١٩٦٣
سويسرا ،وكانت تلك بداية رحالته وعرض
لطفي في إقامة معارضها منذ منتصف
أعماله في أوروبا والعالم .وانتقل في عام
التسعينيات ،لتقدم رؤيتها الفنية التي تعتمد
وفي عام ١٩٧٤انتقل والديها إلى فرنسا،
1998للعيش فيما بين سويسرا والنمسا،
على الخبرات التاريخية والثقافية والمحلية
حيث بدأت تدريبها الفني بعد عشر سنوات
قبل أن يعود إلى مصر في ،2004ويعيش
للمجتمع المصري .ولها العديد من المعارض
في فيال «أرسون» في نيس .وهي تعيش
ً متنقل بين القاهرة واإلسكندرية ،حيث حاليا ً
المحلية والدولية؛ في كل من اإلسكندرية
وتعمل حاليا بين نيويورك وباريس؛ وقامت
يعكف على أعماله.
بعرض أعمالها في بينالي فينيسيا وبينالي سيدني ،وبينالي ويتني ،ومتحف بروكلين،
والقاهرة وباريس ومارسيليا ولندن والهاي وفرانكفورت وثيسالونيكي وفيرجينيا وتكساس وأوهايو ودكار وباماكو وتونس والبحرين ودبي .تعيش هدى لطفي وتعمل
وغيرها .تقول عامر« :أعتقد أن جميع النساء
هدى لطفي أقرب ما تكون في أعمالها
يجب أن يحبن أجسادهن ويستخدمهن كأدوات
الفنية إلى عاشقة آثار ومؤرخة ثقافية ،تنقب
حاليا في القاهرة. ً
لإلغراء» .وفي مطرزاتها المثيرة المعروفة،
عن األشياء والصور المشحونة بعبق التاريخ.
ترفض القوانين القمعية الموضوعة لحكم
ومن ثم تعكف على إعادة صياغتها وتقديمها
إسالم شبانة فنان ومصمم وسائط رقمية
مواقف المرأة تجاه جسدها وتنكر نظرية
في قالب جديد ،باالستعانة بأسلوب
موجة النسوية األولى التي تقترح بأنه يجب
"البريكوالج" .ومن الملفت في أعمال
متعدد االهتمامات ويعيش في القاهرة.
حجب الجسد األنثوي لمنع اإليذاء به .من
لطفي الطريقة التي تُ عيد بها صياغة الكائنات
وتمثل ممارسة شبانة دراسة مفتوحة
خالل تصويرها األفعال الجنسية الصريحة
والصور وايقونات نعرفها ونألفها ونعتادها،
بدقة مدروسة باإلبرة والخيط ،فهي تقدم
جديدا ،وتجعلها تسرد سياقا ً ولكنها تكسبها ً
راق .ويربط للوسائط الرقمية باعتبارها وسيط ٍ بحثه الصورة الرقمية بالصورة الذهنية،
عند مقبرة خرقة قماش بالية يبدو أنها كانت
لتصنع لوحات سلسة ذات طبقات عدة ،ال
من المعارض الجماعية داخل وخارج مصر.
من كفن .شعرت بتواصل بيني وبينها.
تكاد تنتبه فيها إلى ضربات فرشاة الفنانة،
كما أقامت المعارض الفردية بقاعة الهناجر
لقد قبعت في مكانها منذ أمد ،وال أدري
في تعمد موحي بالغياب .واكتسبت أعمالها
بدار األوبرا المصرية ،2018 ،2015 ،2012
ما كانت شاهدة عليه ،أو لمن هي في
أهمية في المشهد الفني العالمي .وسبق
وشاركت ببينالي الكتاب بدورته األولي
األساس .وكان النبهاري بكل تلك األفكار أثره
أن عرضت أعمالها في كل من القاهرة
٢٠١٨بالمتحف الوطني للفنون ببوخارست-
الدائم على عملي" – محمد منيصير
(،)2013 ،2012 ،2011 ،2010 ،2009 ،2008
رومانيا ،حيث اقتنى المتحف عملها ضمن
لندن ( ،)2006دبي ( ،)2011 ،2007واشنطن
مقتنياته الدائمة ،ولها مقتنيات عديدة داخل
( ،)2005وباريس ( .)2005وفي معرضها
بصريا يتمتع بحالة برز محمد منيصير فنانً ا ً من الخصوصية ،ويقوده بحثه الدؤوب في
المنفرد الرابع في قاعة آرت توكس ،مصر،
الشكل إلى تجليات بصرية ،يحاول تتبع أثرها
في ،2014استكشفت وسائط جديدة،
واقتناص لحظة مواتية الستحضارها على
واستخدمت المرايا ،في مزيد من التجريب
سطح العمل .حالة وجدانية تتكرر وتتناسخ
وتتجمع في أنساق هندسية ال تزيد المعنى غموضا .ويستحضر منيصير في أعماله ً إال
ُولد سعيد بدر بمحافظة كفر الشيخ في العام .1965أتم دراسته للنحت بكلية الفنون الجميلة باإلسكندرية ،وحصل
على بكالوريوس وماجستير الفنون في
المرسومة على شرائح من الورق والقماش
نهال وهبي فنانة تشكيلية ولدت وتعيش
عام .1998حصل على منحة للدراسة في
روح الكتابة ،من دون الخوض في فعل
في القاهرة .تتلمذت على يد الفنان
أكاديمية كرارا بين عامي 2002و ،2004حيث
الكتابة .ثمة إيهام بوجود نص مكتوب في
المصري الشهير حسن سليمان ،مما أعطاها
حصل على درجة الدكتوراه في تقنيات
حضوره الطاغي على سطوح القماش.
عاليا من التعبير التشكيلي. فهما وتمكنً ا ً ً
التكبير والتصغير في النحت الحجري .ترتبط
أساسيا دورا ً وقد كان للفنان حسن سليمان ً
أعمال بدر بشكل وثيق بفن النحت المصري
وهو يختار مساحاته من بين سطوح الورق الق َدم تعمد إضفاء حالة من ِ واألقمشة التي َّ
في تطوير أسلوبها في سنوات ممارستها
مشابها من قدرا القديم .تحمل أعماله ً ً
األولى .كما التحقت الفنانة بالعديد من
الرزانة والثقل والقدم ،وفي الوقت ذاته
الدراسات المتخصصة في كلية سنترال ولد منيصير في القاهرة عام ،1989وال يزال
تجريديا طابعا تسبغ على المواد القاسية ً ً
سانت مارتنز بجامعة لندن للفنون.
يعمل ويعيش فيها .ونال درجة البكالوريوس
عصريا .يعالج بدر رسوخ هذه المواد وجاللها ً
تتباين أعمالها ما بين الرسم والتصوير
ليصل بها إلى حالة من التسامي الروحي؛
في التربية الفنية من جامعة القاهرة ،ومنها
والفيديو والتركيبات التشكيلية وهي تخوض
نال درجة ماجستير الفنون الجميلة .حاز
نقاءا يرتكن إلى طاقتها الكامنة ليحقق ً
في استخدام وسائل تعبير جديدة حسب
منيصير على جائزة صالون الشباب الخامس
نادرا .تحيل أعمال بدر إلى رسالة تشكيليا ً ً
الرؤية الفنية للعمل ذاته .تستلهم أعمالها
ضمنية مفادها أن أعماله النحتية تقف
والعشرين بدار األوبرا المصرية عام .2014
من التأثيرات االجتماعية والثقافة المعاصرة
كحارس للتاريخ .منذ عام 1991يعمل بدر
وكذلك من الفلسفة المصرية القديمة.
بتدريس الفنون في كلية الفنون الجميلة
أعمالها تستكشف اإلدراك والوعي الفردي
بجامعة اإلسكندرية ،كما أنه عضو في نقابة
ولدت نادين ه .في القاهرة عام ،1974
والهوية وما يكمن بين الواقع الحسي
وعرضت أعماله في كل من التشكيليين ُ
حاليا في لندن .نالت وهي تعيش وتعمل ً
واالفتراضي ،وذلك عن طريق أعمال
وعمان والكويت مصر والجزائر والسودان ُ
درجة بكالوريوس اللغة اإلنجليزية واألدب
فنية تخلق تفاعال بين الفن والمتلقي إما
وإيطاليا والنمسا وفرنسا والصين وروسيا
المقارن من الجامعة األمريكية في القاهرة،
بالمشاركة الفعلية أو بخلق أجواء رؤية
وكندا .شارك بدر في بينالي اإلسكندرية
ودرجة ماجستير الفنون الجميلة من سنترال
لدول البحر المتوسط في دورته التاسعة
المواهب؛ حيث تمارس الرسم والكتابة وتبدع
الفنانة نهال وهبي عضو بنقابة الفنون
كذلك قام بنحت صروح تذكارية في كل من
تكوينات صوتية ومقاطع فيديو .وعمدت
التشكيلية ،كذلك تشغل منصب مدير
مصر وألمانيا وإسبانيا والبرتغال ولبنان
إلى تفكيك قضايا شائكة من قبيل التفرقة
مقتنيات ومستشار فني منذ ٢٠٠٧
سانت مارتنز ،لندن .وهي فنانة متعددة
عشر والثالثة والعشرين والرابعة والعشرين.
بين الجنسين وتابوهات المجتمع األخرى من
لمجموعة شركة فاروس .وهي مجموعة
خالل البحث في العالقة بين العام والخاص،
مصرية خاصة ذات أهمية في الشرق
والخارجي والداخلي ،والسمات الحميمية
األوسط وتضم العديد من األعمال الفنية
التي تشكل ركيزة من ركائز المجتمعات
المصرية المعاصرة والحديثة لرواد وكبار
الشرق أوسطية .ولكونها فنانة عابرة
الفنانين المصريين .ومنذ عام ٢٠٠٦
للحدود ،فإن أعمالها تتلمس النص والصورة
اشتركت الفنانة نهال وهبي في العديد
NOTHING VANISHES, EVERYTHING TRANSFORMS
ماهر داود ،فنان مصري معاصر ولد في
.2012وتمزج ممارسته الفنية بين الرسم
وبلغاريا وإيطاليا حيث حصل على جائزة في
عام .1983حصل على بكالوريوس التصوير
والتحريك والنص ،مع اهتمام بفقدان األلفة
الجداري في عام 2005من كلية الفنون
سعيا عبر الحكي المتخيل والتذكر البديل، ً
الجميلة بجامعة حلوان .وبعد عمله في
الستكشاف سرديات الهوية المتماسكة
التدريس ،وفي سن مبكر حصل على درجة
للذات والمجتمع عبر اإلخالل بتلك المرتكزات
الماجيستير في التصوير الجداري ،وبعد عدة
باعتباره من أهم الفنانين المعاصرين في
اليقينية .كما يركز على دراسة المحركات
أعوام أمضاها في البحث والتجارب حصل
مصر ،يتمتع محمد عبلة بمتابعة قوية بين
الثقافية والكيفية التي ترسخ بها الصورة
على دكتوراه الفلسفة عام 2013من نفس
الفنانين ومحبي الفن في مصر وخارجها.
والقصة والعادات جذور الهوية .وهو ينهل
ذات الجامعة التي يعمل بها .برزت موهبته
ولد في المنصورة في عام ،١٩٥٣وهو
من التاريخ والميثولوجيا والثقافة الشعبية
في الفن منذ الطفولة ،فتعلم قوة التأثير
رسام ونحات ونقاش وفنان تركيب يركز على
والفنون المعمارية ،عالوة على الذاكرة
البصري في وصول االحساس واألفكار
الرسم الجرافيكي والتصوير الزيتي .ويجمع
الشخصية ،ليحدث تفاعل بين كافة تلك
وآمن بها ،وخالل فترة دراسته ظل باحثا
عبلة في أعماله بين مختلف التقنيات،
العناصر .وباستحضار عناصر غرائبية ملغزة
عن وظائف بديلة عن التصوير المعتاد ،وله مستخدما في هذا المجال تجارب عديده ً
تخوما تتجاوز نطاق وملتبسة ،يصور عمله ً
ملتزما بخلفية نقدية سياسية واجتماعية. ً
الزمان والمكان كما نعهده ،ويقدم للمتلقي
أسطح وخامات مختلفة ،نتج عنها أعمال فنيه
بعد تخرجه من كلية الفنون الجميلة في
خرائط بديلة حتى يعايش روابط جديدة بينه
ميزته في جيله وبين زمالئه من الفنانين
اإلسكندرية عام ،١٩٧٣بدأ عبلة رحلة لمدة
وبين العالم .ويسعى العمل إلى تشويش
سبع سنوات حول أوروبا في عام ،١٩٧٨
األحداث ،حيث يكون التغيير هو الثابت.
الجناح الرسمي ببينالي فينيسيا في دورته
حيث زار المتاحف في إسبانيا وفرنسا
ويتناول ثنائيات التناقض واالستبانة،
السادسة والخمسون ،ضمن مشروع بعنوان
وبلجيكا وألمانيا ،ودرس في نهاية المطاف
األلفة والغرابة .وتم عرض عمله في مصر
الفن والنحت والرسومات في فيينا
وزيوريخ .وقد ُعرض أول معرض فردي له
المعاصرينُ .اختير داود لتمثيل مصر في
«هل يمكنك أن ترى» .وكذلك شارك في ورشح عدة معارض دولية ومحلية ،كما فاز ُ
من الجامعة األمريكية في القاهرة عام
أخيرا بسويسرا بمعرض "مانيفستا ،"11 ً
لعدة تكريمات وجوائز.
محمد عبد الكريم
في معرض هوهمان في ألمانيا ،تلته عروض في معرض "إوات" في هولندا
حصل محمد عبد الكريم على شهادة
عام ١٩٨٩وقاعة "أوريبرو" للفن في
الماجستير من مدرسة كانتون ڤاليه للفنون
السويد واألكاديمية المصرية للفنون
تستكشف أعمال ملك ياقوت مسائل
في سويسرا ،حيث بدأ إنتاج أعمال فنية
الجميلة في روما عام .١٩٩١
الزمن ،واإلشارات والرموز البنيوية
وتركز على العالقة تعتمد على النصوص ّ
حاليا على واألبستمولوجية .وهي تعكف ً
ما بين الفن واإلنتاج المعرفي ،كما أصبح
وبعد والدة ابنه ،انتقل عبلة إلى مصر ،حيث
استكشاف مقاربات أنطولوجية للغة والموضوعات (أو المواقع) باعتبارها
ملتزما بالممارسات االدائية عبر البحث ً
أقام العديد من المعارض المنفردة في
متعدد التخصصات فيما يتعلق بتصور
جميع أنحاء البالد .وفي عام ، ١٩٩٤حصل
"كيانات" .ما هو الرابط بين الفن والموقع؟
السرد ،الغناء ،الرقص ،والكشف ،والقيام
على المركز األول في بينالي الكويت ،وتال
وما الذي قد تعنيه خصوصيات موقع ما؟
بأفعال .تتفاعل ممارساته عبر تلك األفعال
ذلك الجائزة الكبرى في بينالي اإلسكندرية
اهتماما بأفكار وتعكس ممارساتها البحثية ً
من خالل التركيز على السفر ،التنقل ،تاريخ
في عام .١٩٩٧كما شارك الفنان في
خصوصية المكان في الفن ،والعالقات بين
المارقين وأدب الشطار ،حيث يجمع سلسلة
العديد من الفعاليات الفنية الدولية مثل
الموضوع والكينونة ،وتشابك المفاهيم.
من سرديات غير خطية ،خيالية ،والحقيقية
وألنها تصيغ عملها في المعتاد على هيئة
جزءا من العديد من بينالي هافانا وكان عمله ً
أسئلة مفتوحة ،فإنه يستدعي التأمل
تقريبا ،وما يسمى الوقائع التاريخية لتشكيل ً
المعارض الجماعية في متحف كونست في
سيناريو وارشيف أحداث وقصص .في
بون في ألمانيا .أسس عبلة عام ٢٠٠٧مركز
والتفكير داخل دورة إعادة صياغة وتعريف ال
هذا السياق تهدف ممارساته إلى إنتاج
الفيوم للفن وبعد عامين ،أسس أول متحف
دوما ما يمكن إعادة تناوله. نهائية :فهناك ً
الروايات وعرض الطريقة التي يتم بها إنتاج
كاريكاتير في الشرق األوسط ،أيضا في
الروايات .وقد ُعرضت أعماله في معارض
الفيوم .وهو يعيش اآلن بين مصر وألمانيا.
الصور المعاصرة ،القاهرة ( ،)2012بينالي
مروان الجمل فنان مصري معاصر ،مولود
ولقاءات عديدة منها فوتو كايرو ، 5مركز
في العام .1990وحاز على درجة ماجستير
"جوججا" باندونيسيا ( ،)2013طوكيو "وندر
"أعمد من خالل رسوماتي تجسيد ظواهر
الفنون الجميلة في الرسم من معهد فرانك
سايت" باليابان ( ،)2012بينالي الشارقة
غير ملموسة في قالب حسي ملموس.
مور ،غروننغن ،هولندا ،ودرجة البكالوريوس
( ،)2013وغيرها .وقدمت عروضه كذلك
كنت ذات مرة في أحد المدافن ،حيث وجدت
دوره في تعليم الفن المعاصر في مصر
ساركيس طوسونيان فنان مصري من أصل
في الخمس عشرة سنوات األخيرة حيث
أرمني وهو من مواليد مدينة اإلسكندرية
كان من أكثر المشجعين للجيل الجديد من
.1953حصل على بكالوريوس من كلية
الفنانين الشباب من خالل عمله كمدرس
الفنون الجميلة باإلسكندرية عام ،1979
للفنون البصرية في الجامعة وكذلك من
وهو عضو في نقابة الفنانين التشكيليين،
خالل تنظيمه السنوي للورشة المستقلة
وعضو بأتيليه اإلسكندرية .أقام 16معرض
التجريبية في فنون الميديا واإلبداع من
خاص في اإلسكندرية والقاهرة ،وشارك
عام 2000حتى 2012في كلية التربية الفنية
في أكثر من 150معرض محلي ،كما شارك
بجامعة حلوان .أسس النشوقاتي عام
في معارض دولية بكل من قبرص ،1996
2013مشروعه التعليمي التجريبي الخاص،
إيطاليا ،2003اليابان ،2004السودان ،2005
"مشروع آسكي لدعم الممارسات التعليمية
رومانيا ،2006فرنسا ،2008واليمن .2010
للفن المعاصر" ،الذي يهتم بدعم وتنمية
شارك في سمبوزيوم أسوان الدولي
النشاط االبداعي والبحثي في مجال فن
للنحت .2008 ،2007 ،2006كذلك سمبوزيوم
الوسائط الجديدة والتكنولوجيا الرقمية ،
مكتبة اإلسكندرية الدولي .2008 ،2007نفذ
للجيل الجديد من دارسي الفنون في مصر.
نصب تذكاري ألصالة العالقات التاريخية بين شعبي مصر وأرمينيا في حديقة الحرية بالقاهرة .نال جائزة أولى في النحت من بينالي بورسعيد القومي السابع ،2005 وحاز على تكريم من وزارة الثقافة بجمهورية أرمينيا سنة .2011له مقتنيات بأماكن عديدة منها متحف الفن المصري الحديث بالقاهرة، المتحف المفتوح بأسوان ،مطار القاهرة الدولي ،3ومكتبة اإلسكندرية.
ياسمين المليجي فنانة بصرية ولدت في القاهرة عام ،1991حيث تعيش وتعمل حاليا .بعد تخرجها من كلية الفنون الجميلة ً بالقاهرة قسم تصوير عام 2013قامت بدراسة الوسائط المتعددة في مدرسة الفنون الجميلة العليا بمدينة نيم بفرنسا، كما شاركت في برنامج "ماس" باإلسكندرية للفنون المعاصرة عام .2016تهتم في أعمالها الحالية بالنحت والفيديو والتركيب
هو فنان بصري وأكاديمي مصري ،ولد
والوسائط المتعددة .اشتركت بمعارض
في مدينة دمياط عام .1971درس في
جماعية في مصر وخارجها أهمها بينالي
كلية التربية الفنية بجامعة حلوان وتخرج
داكار بالسنغال عام ،2016وبينالي إيطاليا
منها عام .1994عمل كمدرس للرسم
للشباب عام ،2015ومعرض جماعي
والتصوير وفن الوسائط الجديدة في نفس
بمتحف الفن المعاصر بمدينة ينشوان
الجامعة منذ تخرجه حتى عام 2009ويعمل
بالصين ،كذلك مهرجان "ميتنجز" بالدنمارك
ً حاليا مدرس في برنامج الفنون البصرية
في عام .2017
بالجامعة األمريكية بالقاهرة ،حصل على درجة الدكتوراه في فلسفة التربية الفنية عام 2007عن دراسة في فنون الوسائط الجديدة وهوية المجتمع المصري المعاصر. نالت العديد من مشروعاته اإلبداعية التقدير وقد عرضت في العديد من المتاحف والمعارض الدولية حول العالم مثل متاحف كل من نيويورك الفن المعاصر في ٍ واستكهولم ودوسلدورف ومورى بطوكيو وبومبيدو بباريس ومتحف التيت وهيوارد جاليري بلندن ،كما ُعرضت في بينالي فينسيا الدولي عام .1999يذكر للنشوقاتي
NOTHING VANISHES, EVERYTHING TRANSFORMS
NOTHING VANISHES, EVERYTHING TRANSFORMS
ﺃﺭﺕ ﺩﻱ ﺇﻳﺠﻴﺒﺖ ﺷﺮﻛﺔ ﺃﺳﺴﺘﻬﺎ ﻧﺎﺩﻳﻦ ﻋﺒﺪ ﺍﻟﻐﻔﺎﺭ ﻟﺪﻋﻢ ﺍﻟﻔﻦ ﻭﺍﻟﺜﻘﺎﻓﺔ ﻓﻲ ﻣﺼﺮ .ﺗﻬﺪﻑ ﺍﻟﺸﺮﻛﺔ ﻹﻗﺎﻣﺔ ﻋﻼﻗﺎﺕ ﺗﻌﺎﻭﻧﻴﺔ ﻣﺤﻠﻴﺔ ﻭﺇﻗﻠﻴﻤﻴﺔ ﻭﺩﻭﻟﻴﺔ ﻗﻮﻳﺔ ﻟﺘﻌﺰﻳﺰ ﻣﻜﺎﻧﺔ ﺍﻟﻔﻦ ﻋﺎﻟﻤﻴﺎ .ﺗﻘﻮﻡ ﺍﻟﺸﺮﻛﺔ ﺑﺘﻨﻈﻴﻢ ﻣﻌﺮﺽ ﺍﻟﻤﺼﺮﻱ ً ﺳﻨﻮﻱ ﻓﻲ ﻣﻜﺎﻥ ﺗﺎﺭﻳﺨﻲ ﻓﺮﻳﺪ ﻟﺘﺴﻠﻴﻂ ﺍﻟﻀﻮﺀ ﻋﻠﻰ ﺗﺮﺍﺙ ﻣﺼﺮ ﺍﻟﺜﻘﺎﻓﻲ ﺍﻟﻐﻨﻲ ،ﻭﻟﺨﻠﻖ ﺭﺍﺑﻂ ﻣﺸﺘﺮﻙ ﺑﻴﻦ ﺍﻟﻔﻦ ﺍﻟﻤﺼﺮﻱ ﺍﻟﻘﺪﻳﻢ ﻭﻧﻈﻴﺮه ﺍﻟﺤﺪﻳﺚ ،ﺑﻬﺪﻑ ﺗﻘﺪﻳﻢ ﺻﻮﺭﺓ ﺟﺪﻳﺪﺓ ﻭﻣﻌﺎﺻﺮﺓ ﻟﻤﺼﺮ ﺃﻣﺎﻡ ﺍﻟﻌﺎﻟﻢ.
This publication coincides with the exhibition Nothing Vanishes, Everything Transfroms on view from 27 October to 27 November 2018 at the Ma...
Published on Nov 15, 2018
This publication coincides with the exhibition Nothing Vanishes, Everything Transfroms on view from 27 October to 27 November 2018 at the Ma...