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Chant Avedissian: Redressing Identity 

October 18, 20177:00 p.m.
Casa Árabe Auditorium (at Calle Alcalá, 62) 7:00 p.m. Free entry until the event’s capacity is reached.
In English, with simultaneous translation.

Conference given by Nigel Ryan, art critic and cultural editor at the Al-Ahram Weekly newspaperfor for nearly two decades and Sabrina Amrani, a gallery owner, on the occasion of the opening of the exhibition "Chant Avedissian. A Levantine Heading East”.

Born in Cairo (1951), Aveidssian is one of the Egyptian artists to have best kept identity and popular traditions, but from a modern perspective. A tireless traveler who has gone from Egypt to Uzbekistan, his observations on decorative and architectural pieces are reflected in his work, made using various techniques: stencil, textile, photography, gouache on cardboard, etc.

Art critic Nigel Ryan will be speaking about this artist's work within the context of art in Egypt during the twentieth century, a period that can be viewed as an attempt to construct a coherent national style. Political engagement and notions of authenticity were central to this endeavour which continues to cast a shadow over contemporary production. In “Redressing Identity”, Nigel Ryan argues that Chant Avedissian’s artistic practice and work constitute a radical critique of a process that resulted in the promotion of exclusion and the straitjacketing of art rather than any expansion of horizons.

Nigel Ryan has lived in Egypt since 1989. For 18 years he was the cultural editor and art critic of the Cairo-based newspaper Al-Ahram Weekly. He has written extensively on contemporary Egyptian art and the wider cultural scene, chronicling – among other things – the emergence of independent art spaces in the decade preceding the Arab Spring. His work has appeared in many publications, including Grand Street, New York; Journal of Comparative Criticism, Cambridge University Press, and Alif: Journal of Comparative Poetics, American University in Cairo Press.
Chant Avedissian: Redressing Identity 
From the series “Sketches 1979-1982.” Courtesy of the Sabrina Amrani Gallery.

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Chant Avedissian. A Levantine Heading East

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