Cairo- The “Tugela” hall for culture and arts in Amsterdam is hosting an exceptional exhibition for two Egyptian artists Ismat Dawstashi and Shawky Ezzat dubbed as “Thing from my world, and thing from our world”. The exhibition has kicked off earlier this month, and is set to be featured in several other galleries in the city.
The exhibition embraces about 20 black and white paintings for Dawstashi, one of the most eminent Egyptian painters, who lives a new artistic experience in a joint workshop with other Egyptian artist Shawky Ezzat. Through this experience, Dawstashi has enriched his long career, which debuted in 1962, and saw over 160 individual and collective exhibitions.
Talking to «Asharq Al-Awsat», Dawstashi said: «This exhibition is a new artistic experience which I decided to go into and dive in the wide world of graphic through the « silk screen » technique.
The exhibition kicked off with two paintings: the “popular proverbs” by the Flemish artist Pieter Breugel (1569 – 1530), and the “consort” painting by the Egyptian artist Effat Nagy (1905 – 1994), where I and my partner both worked on the research and figuration.
He said: “the artist by nature can practice any type of art, but there are other types such as graphics that need specialized workshops, which unfortunately do not exist in Egypt. However, here in the Netherlands, the exhibition comes as a joint workshop that takes a full year of preparations. This workshop’s content is related to my previous work inspired by the Egyptian rich popular heritage that still has much more to offer.”
Dawstashi also talked about “Al-Mustanir Dada”, a famous collection in which he introduced Egyptian historic and folkloric symbols with a contemporary spirit.
In the exhibition’s paintings, people will feel the spirit of the popular Egyptian proverbs and the cultural heritage but in a vital and contemporary aspect that harmonizes with any environment, to take viewers back to old eras, and at the same time, reminds them that the future extends from the past.
It is Dawstashi’s philosophy in bringing times, cultures, and civilizations together by focusing on the human and psychological depth.
Commenting on choosing the Flemish artist Pieter Breugel, and whether he sees similarities between their experiences, he said: “Breugel was inspired by the controversies of the world at his time. He expressed these controversies in his painting as an artistic expression. His paintings gave me an emotional push that came mixed with my artistic experience in this exhibition.”
In this exhibition, Dawstashi puts all his artistic impressions and his influence by art museums in Amsterdam, so his paintings reflect a unique combination of Egyptian-European art.