VIDEO: Wekalet Behna fuses visual arts, cinema, film heritage in Alexandria


Last Friday saw the official opening of Wekalet Behna, an art space focused on audio-visual arts in Alexandria.

The space was once the office of Behna Films Selections, one of Egypt's largest cinema distribution companies between the 1930s and 1950s, and hosts a substantial archive of the county’s cinematic history, selections of which will be exhibited at the venue.

Wekalet Behna will also serve as a workshop, production, and exhibition space for independent cinema, video, and visual art in Egypt's second largest city.

The first of a series of opening nights hosted three exhibitions by three generations of artists: Ali Ashour presented a painting exhibition featuring never-exhibited works from the start of his career, Amr El-Sawah presented experimental photography, and Yara Mekkawi showcased a video art project.

The event also featured a film screening of Onshoudet El-Fouad, one of the first ever spoken films in the region which was recovered by Basile Behna and his sister, Marie-Claude, the heirs to the Behna legacy and the owners of the new art space.

Video by Rowan El Shimi

Find more information on Wekalet Behna's month long opening events here.

Read more on the history of Behna Films Selections here.