February ‘15
Insight Interview

February ‘15
Arts-Mart Unleashes The Artists of Tomorrow
Arts-Mart Unleashes The Artists of Tomorrow


Arts-Mart is an Egyptian initiative and online gallery that acts as the finest gateway to today's modern and contemporary Egyptian visual arts scene. Following its past tremendous events, Arts-Mart has recently presented its latest exhibition 'The Artists of Tomorrow' which features seven of the most promising upcoming talents currently happening in the contemporary Egyptian art scene'¦

Tell us more about your experience with Arts-Mart.

Arts-Mart gives me the exposure I need. It made me reach more people and allowed me to work side'¨ by side with other artists and this helped me gain a lot of experience.

From a career in advertising to being a full-time painter, what encouraged you to take that risky step?

My heart wasn't in advertising and I wanted to be a full time artist, it was my dream.

What encouraged you to be part of 'The Artists of Tomorrow'?

I really wanted to be part of 'The Artists of Tomorrow' because it is an exhibition that showcases a variety of different styles and I wanted to be part of this. Personally, Arts-Mart is very important to me, this is the first time I am exhibiting my art since the revolution.

What's your source of inspiration as an artist?

Nothing in specific, it depends on my mood, where I am and the environment around me. I try to look at as much visual imagery as possible to improve my imagination.

In your paintings, you succeed in translating the cultural heritage with a contemporary twist. How do you reach this equation?

I try to achieve this through delving into my personal experiences. The experiences I have had in which culture/heritage and current events have intertwined.

What are your future plans for Arts-Mart?

'¨We have a lot of exciting surprises lined up for 2015 to look out for which will revealed closer to the date.

How was the idea of Arts-Mart born?

'¨The idea was born from the demand to create a space for young artists.

What did you aim to reach when you started Arts-Mart?

To provide a platform for art lovers and artists to meet whilst maintaining easy access to the Egyptian art of today.

Tell us more about 'The Artists of Tomorrow'.

The exhibition showcases promising talents with fresh voices who are contributing to the rejuvenation of the art scene.

On what bases did you choose the participants?'¨

On their style, range, consistency of quality, creativity, and investment value.'¨

How would you evaluate the art scene in Egypt?

'¨It's on the rise. The art following is growing as people gradually are taking more of an interest in art and with it fresh talents are now more present in the art scene. It's becoming trendy.

What's the importance of having an online gallery like Arts-Mart in Egypt?'¨

It presents accessible art for art lovers and at the same time great exposure for artists, it widens the art fan base, provides art awareness, presents young fresh talents along side art masters.

Do you plan to have international expansions?

'¨Yes, we hope so.

What's the importance of having an exhibition like 'The Artists of Tomorrow'?

It's really important to showcase works by up and coming artists. I like Arts-Mart a lot and I think it has a huge amount of potential. I've been with Arts-Mart for three years now and they are great.

How do you choose the subject of your paintings?

I like to keep it simple. I find inspiration in highly populated streets, as I love crowds and crowded places. I believe that a person who grabs a chair and a cup of tea and watches the crowd and people go by can pay a lot of attention to detail.

Why is the Egyptian woman a constant hero in most of your paintings?

Because you will find the Egyptian woman everywhere, she is an'¨ important member in our community. She is the figure that keeps everything in motion. As we say in Egypt, she is ''Amoud Elbiet'.

How can you evaluate the artistic scene in Egypt?

It is difficult to evaluate the artistic scene in Egypt. I see Egypt as a source of art, she is very attached to her past however she still has a bright future ahead of her and is a bit under-valued by our society.

What do you believe is a key element in creating a good composition?

Each artist has his own view on what the key element is in creating a good composition. For some, inspiration is obtained by walking down the streets. For others, the idea is like a baby in a'¨ womb waiting to get out. For me, the key element for a good composition is my memory.

What's the hardest thing about being an Artist in Egypt?

Not getting much appreciation as one could get. Few people understand art as the artists themselves.

Do you believe that art is still witnessed as a cultural taboo in Egypt and the Middle East?

Yes I think so. You can't create any kind of figure without being questioned. I once tried drawing a woman fully dressed and on top of her clothes she was wearing underwear and I was accused of being 'naughty', so to speak.

By Rania Ihab