Art Alert: Photography, storytelling and music tell tales of El-Zabaleen

Ahram Online , Monday 3 Aug 2015

At ROOM Art Space, Norwegian-Austrian photographer Christian Stejskal presents a multimedia exhibition sharing his life among the garbage collectors of Cairo’s El-Zabaleen area

Christian Stejskal
Still from Christian Stejskal's performance of My Neighbourhood at ROOM in July

Christian Stejskal has played the violin all his life. He studied music in Copenhagen, Hannover and Bern, settling as a violin soloist in Norway.

During a journey he undertook in 2008 at the age of 37, Stejskal discovered a passion for photography. His trip took him through 10 countries, from his birthplace in Vienna, all the way to the holy city of Axum, in the north of Ethiopia, overall walking 7000km.

One of the countries Stejskal stopped in on his way to Ethiopia was Egypt. He was particularly affected by the garbage workers in El-Zabaleen area in Moqattam.

Moved by the people’s warmth, humility and strength, and after completing his pilgrimage to Axum, Stejskal returned to Egypt to move in with a family in the Zabaleen area.

In the multimedia performance taking place at ROOM Art Space, Stejskal will present his upcoming book, My Neighborhood, exhibiting his photography and storytelling as well as a violin recital.

My Neighborhood shares the story of his soul-searching pilgrimage: his life in Egypt as a violin player at the Cairo Opera House, and his experience living among the garbage collectors, with insight into the peoples’ struggles, tragedies, joys and triumphs.

Thursday 6 August, 8 pm
ROOM Art Space, 10 Etehad El-Mohamin Street, Garden City, Cairo


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