Wednesday, February 20, 2013

Artists of the world, unite!

It was my last (and really only) day in Cairo after spending the previous two in bed sick, and I was still under the weather but determined to see a few sites before leaving. 

I had a brief encounter on Mohamed Mahmoud Street near Tahrir Square, with what became my most treasured experience.

What I found there on January 21 may not even exist anymore. It’s an ephemeral art, one that comes  and goes depending on the Egyptian government, which continues to subvert (paint over) the graffiti (or “erase history” as some have charged). 

Not to be deterred by the annihilation of their political and creative acts, local artists continue to take charge of their newly found “freedom” (relatively speaking).

My excitement upon finding this jewel, the “real” art of the 21st century — art that has a purpose outside the stifling confines of the New York (and other economically viable) markets, art that truly embraces a higher purpose other than mere decoration, intellectual compensation, and remuneration — has been dashed a bit. 

It seems the gold rush has begun, even the networks have gotten in the act. There are numerous folks in the blogosphere documenting the art of revolution and until I’ve written a more comprehensive analysis I’ll refer them to you below (after the pics). 

Probably the best way to view these is to click on a picture and then watch them as a slide show.


Capturing the Art that Defined Egypt's Revolution

Revolutionary art mirrors Egypt’s changing pulse

Graffiti: the art of revolution in Egypt continues

Egypt: Art and the revolution

'Erasing history': Egyptians bristle after graffiti murals painted over

Egyptian graffiti artists target whitewashed walls and the president

Graffiti in Cairo and Tahrir Square

Graffiti in Egypt: New form of alternative media

Revolutionary Graffiti From Egypt

Graffiti in Egypt

Khaled Hafez: Art and Revolution in Egypt

Art in Egypt's Revolutionary Square


Art & Revolution in Egypt: The Forgotten Writers Foundation