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Art Agenda: 1-15 March

As spring swiftly approaches, a number of visual art exhibitions across Cairo present works by various local artists. Ahram Online lists the most exciting shows in this bi-weekly agenda

Ahram Online, Friday 28 Feb 2014
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Visitor inspects artwork at The House of Rare Historic Photographs exhibition, Townhouse Gallery. (Photo: Rowan El Shimi)
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Meeting Points 7: Collective exhibition at CIC

The Contemporary Image Collective (CIC) is hosting a collective show featuring works by a group of Egyptian and international artists. Besides Cairo, Meeting Points 7 will be held in Zagreb, Antwerp, Hong Kong, Beirut, Vienna and Moscow. Inspired by unfolding social and political transformations in the Arab world and the changing shape of capitalism around the globe, the exhibitions partake of an international dialogue on politics, economics and culture. The show features works by Iman Issa, Sanja Iveković, Maryam Jafri, Rajkamal Kahlon, Kayfata and Haytham El-Wardany, Jumana Manna, Cecilia Vicuña, Basma Al-Sharif, and Rosalind Nashashibi.

Exhibition runs until 8 March
22 Abdel-Khaleq Tharwat Street, 4th Floor, Downtown, Cairo

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Rosalind Nashashibi, Still from Carlo’s Vision(2011). (Photo: Courtesy of the artist and LUX, London)

Sabah Naim at Safarkhan Art Gallery

Egyptian artist Sabah Naim will exhibit her work in a solo exhibition opening this month at the Safarkhan Art Gallery. The artist has participated in international collective exhibitions from Paris' Centre Georges Pompidou to Tokyo's Mori Art Museum, among many others.

Exhibition runs until 8 March
6 Brazil Street, Zamalek, Cairo

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Artwork by Sabah Naim. (Photo: courtesy of Safarkhan Gallery)

Laugh, Play, Work and Love: Georges Fikry Ibrahim at Zamalek Art Gallery

The title of this solo exhibition by Georges Fikry Ibrahim -- Laugh, Play, Work and Love -- is borrowed from a song written by Morsy Gamal Aziz and performed by the late Abdel-Halim Hafez to music by Mounir Mourad in the 1961 film A Day in My Life. Focusing on Egyptian society, Ibrahim's vibrant canvases attempt to capture daily life activities in both urban and rural Egypt. The paintings also incorporate symbols that reveal the cultural and historical layers of Egyptian society.

Exhibition runs until 11 March
11 Brazil Street, Zamalek, Cairo

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Artwork by Georges Fikry Ibrahim. (Photo: courtesy of Zamalek Art Gallery)

The House of Rare Historic Photographs: Barry Iverson at Townhouse Gallery

Cairo-based US photographer Barry Iverson presents a series of sepia and hand-coloured photographs that honour Egyptian and Arab history at the Townhouse's First Floor Gallery. Iverson moved to Cairo three decades ago, and has shot photographs for various international publications, including Life, People, National Geographic, and others. "Playing with early photographic vernacular stemming from studio portraiture, glamorous cinematic gestures, Orientalist postcards and architectural records, this body of work is a highly personal documentation of a history both recent and deep, remembered and imagined; a projection of subjective memories on actual places," reads the curatorial statement.

Exhibition runs until 12 March
10 Nabrawy Street, off Champollion Street, Downtown, Cairo

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Visitor inspects artwork at The House of Rare Historic Photographs exhibition, Townhouse Gallery. (Photo: Rowan El Shimi)

International photo festival at Gezira Art Centre

Twenty-eight professional photographers from 20 different countries will participate in the International Gezira Contemporary Photography Festival's second edition hosted by the Gezira Art Centre in Zamalek. Curated by Egyptian photographer Ayman Lotfy, the festival will exhibit an exceptional selection of works by a multitude of acclaimed photographers with a number of international awards to their names. Hosted every second year in Cairo, the festival will later be received by the Egyptian Art Academy in Rome, Italy, as it traditionally travels to one of the participating countries.

Festival runs through 12 March
Gezira Art Centre, Al-Sheikh Al-Marsafy Street, Zamalek, Cairo

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Artwork at International photo festival. (Photo: courtesy of International photo festival)

Cinderella’s Tales: Shayma Kamel at Mashrabia Gallery

Keeping a close eye on the dynamics of social life in Cairo, Shayma Kamel, who has no formal art education, usually captures the essence of the Egyptian persona mostly through large paintings that simultaneously haunt and enchant. In this exhibition, the artist deals with figures -- such as fictional princesses of the likes of Cinderella -- that are idolised by young girls. Kamel also uses the representation of manikins we see in storefront windows to express an alternate reality. Through her paintings, Kamel attempts to capture the blurred lines between fantasy and reality within society.

Exhibition runs until 20 March
8 Champollion Street, Downtown, Cairo

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Painting by Shayma Kamel. (Photo: courtesy of Mashrabia Gallery)

Lingering in Vicinity: Maha Maamoun at Gypsum Gallery

Gypsum Gallery, which recently opened in Zamalek, is hosting a solo exhibition of works by Cairo-based visual artist Maha Maamoun. The show presents two projects that the artists produced a decade apart: a series of large-scale photographs dubbed Cairospaces (2003), and a single-channel video named Shooting Stars Remind Me of Eavesdroppers (2013). "Seen together, the two works propose aesthetic, formal and conceptual threads that run through Maamoun’s practice," reads the curatorial statement.

Exhibition runs until 25 March
5a Bahgat Ali Street, Zamalek, Cairo

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Still from Shooting Stars Remind me of Eavesdroppers. (Photo: courtesy of Gypsum Gallery.

Maspero II: Collective exhibition at Darb 1718

Maspero II: The Sequel is a follow-up to a 2011 exhibition curated by Ali Abdel-Mohsen, featuring the works of artists who dealt with the topic of censorship, media freedom and the iconic television building using painting, writing, video, photography, graffiti and even architecture. This time around, some of the artists from the original exhibition, along with new names, are revisiting these concepts nearly three years later to examine what has changed – or, rather, has not – since the outbreak of the Egyptian revolution. Maspero II: The Sequel will feature works by Ahmed El-Shaer, Aisha El-Shabrawy, Ali Abdel-Mohsen, Amr El-Kafrawy, Azza Eissa, Moataz Nasr, Moawya Helal, May El-Hossamy, Yassmin El-Meligy and Youssef Limoud.

Exhibition opens 1 March and runs until 1 April
Qasr Al-Shamee Street, Al-Fakhareen, Old Cairo
(Behind the Hanging Church and Amr Ibn Al-Aas Mosque)

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Maspero II: The Sequel


Sheer Strength: Collective exhibition at GIZ

This exhibition, held at the Deutsche Gesellschaft für Internationale Zusammenarbeit (GIZ) office, in collaboration with the Mashrabia Gallery of Contemporary Art, brings together four contemporary female artists. Entitled Sheer Strength, the show will feature works by Hala Abu Shady, Dina El-Gharib, Souad Abdel-Rasoul and Fadwa Ramadan. The diverse showcased collection includes paintings, drawings, collage, and digital photography. "From the more rigorous abstraction to a surprising overlapping of images, their trajectories of research result into works of strong visual impact," reads the curatorial statement.

The exhibition runs until 30 April
4d Al-Gezira Street, Zamalek, Cairo

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Artwork by Soad Abdel Rasoul. (Photo: courtesy of Mashrabia Gallery)

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