“Art belongs to nobody and everybody. Art belongs to all and no time” quoted from and said by award-winning British author Julian Barnes within his novel The Noise Of Time These words motivated a set of Egyptian artists to select “transition” as the subject of the photography and videography festival in Cairo.
The very first of this festival titled “Cairographie” is happening now from Nov. 5-Dec. 31 and aims to raise awareness of contemporary issues — like the surroundings, protests, migration as well as the youth — through videos and photos. Organized from Darb 1718, a modern art and culture center in Cairo which was established in 2008, the festival is encouraged by Photopia, a heart for photographers at Egypt.
“we would like to shed more light on artwork — notably photographs and videography — to enhance the art movement in Egypt,” Moataz Nasr, the creator of Darb 1718, informed Al-Monitor. Nasr, among Egypt’s most known and notable visual artists, represented his country from the 2017 Venice Biennale, the most important art event in the world, having a exhibition called “This too Shall Pass.”
“The team exhibitions create an extensive conversation between the audience and the artists. This [conversation] is the core reason behind starting a festival such as this,” he stated, adding that the movie and photographical functions of 43 artists were exhibited.
“We picked the subject of ‘transition’ this season to underline the transformation and change which has happened in Egypt following the January 25 Revolution,”Karim El Hayawan, among the organizers and also the programmer of this motif, informed Al-Monitor. “The shift could be a very personal thing — using an extremely extensive message. This is an open concept where the participating artists can communicate their vision concerning it via videos or photos.”
Hayawan reported that the festival’s theme allowed the artists to state transformation and transition in their own manner, be it cultural, political, ideological, intellectual or religious. The photos or videos reflect both individual experiences and/or sociopolitical subjects like Egyptian employees, the daily life or structure/architechture.
Participant Reem Akl exhibited the anguish of a few dark-skinned refugees in Egypt with several photographs.
“Many refugees in Egypt have problems with racism on account of their dark skin. The less educated individuals usually mock them from the roads.
Farida Nader, another photographer, engaged in the display with a set of photographs that revealed a tree at the road where she dwelt. The photographs showed the way the scene changed after the tree was cut down.
Along with exhibited artworks, the festival includes workshops and talks from the artists to discuss thoughts and experiences. In one of those discussions, titled “Made to Change: Young Artists On The Rise,” Young photographers shared their own perspectives and experiences with the crowd.
Hamada Elrasam, a freelance photographer, stated that in the wake of the revolution, the audiences on the Egyptian roads had become frantic and disorganized, therefore that he believed that he needed to opt for a different photography fashion to express that the chaos.
As soon as I went to take photos of pro-Morsi protesters, people believed I was a part of the Muslim Brotherhood. When I needed to shoot photographs for the other hand, people believed that I had been from Morsi. When I went to scopp a demonstration that had no connection with the prior ones, people asked me why I had been there and advised me to go pay attention to more significant protests,” Elrasam explained.
“I had the notion of blending three pictures of the 3 protests collectively, utilizing the triple vulnerability. With this job I needed to express that the feverish scene from Egyptian society at that moment,” he further added.
Throughout his discussion, Elrasam also voiced his outlook on schooling system in Egypt and what the labour market requirements.
He revealed a massive photo divided in to two elements, one of which showed a guy sitting at a cafe looking gloomy and another showing students in a course speaking, playing and paying no attention while the instructor explains the course to a couple concentrated students. The guy from the cafe reflects the recognition that not everybody who completes his research can locate the right job, Elrasam noted.
Nelly El Sharkawy, in her 30s, spoke about photography and the way she began taking photographs of her friends and character when she was just 17. Then she wished to make something different. “I blended two pictures to produce one but different one by using dual vulnerability. The end result was great,” Sharkawy informed Al-Monitor.
Then she began taking photographs of historical places in various governorates and reflecting on unique tips for her photographs. “In Alexandria, as an instance, I took photographs of these poor fishermen as well as the way in which they live, rather than the typical shots of the ocean,” she explained.
“Photography has a wonderful effect on my character. I became more brave and know more people and have seen more areas than previously,” Sharkawy reasoned.