16 August 2022 05:57 AM

Cultural institutions

Sector of Fine Arts

Wednesday، 20 October 2021 - 08:03 PM

Prompted by its strong belief in the importance of art as a basic component of a nation's culture, the Sector of Fine Arts unleashes its artistic and cultural activities to give rise to the artist's inspirational sources of creativity in art movement. As a result, the artist can fully be integrated into society. Further, to widen the process of creativity the Sector of Fine Arts makes cultural sites available across the country to push forward the wheel of cultural development.

Throughout its history, the Sector of Fine Arts has witnessed several development phases. It first acted as a Supervision of Fine Arts, a department affiliate to the Ministry of Maaref (education).

- In 1958, when the Ministry of Culture was established, it supervised fine arts by opening the General Department of Fine Arts under the chairmanship of artist Salah Taher.

In 1966, the General Administration of Museums, established in 1959, was annexed to the General Department of Fine Arts under the chairmanship of artist Abdel-Qader Rezk, who was the head of art museums.

- In 1972, Mr. Abdel-Hamid Hamdy was appointed the head of the General Administration of Fine Arts and Museums. Hamdy successfully supervised plans, which turned the General Administration of Fine Arts and Museums into the General Authority of Arts and Culture.

- In 1980 , by the establishment of the Supreme Council of Culture,  the General Authority of Arts and Culture was replaced by the National Center of Fine Arts, which was chaired by Artist Dr. Mustafa Abdel-Mo'ety.

-In 1988, Prof. Dr. Ahmed Nawar was appointed the Head of the National Center of Fine Arts. Dr. Nawar was followed by Artist Mohsen Sha'lan, and then Prof. Dr. Salah Al-Melegy.

In February 16, 2000, the National Center of Fine Arts was upgraded into the "Sector of Fine Arts". Up till now, the Sector of Fine Arts has unveiled a dynamic and ambitious program to develop and upgrade art museums and cultural centers sponsored by the Sector.

The Sector's role in cultural life

The Sector of Fine Arts sponsors a panoramic view of cultural and artistic activities by organizing regular exhibitions. Artists representing different generations are encouraged to intensify their participation in major exhibitions (solo or group) at home and abroad. Examples of these exhibitions are:

International Exhibitions

They stimulate interaction with foreign cultures and create a platform for the international dialogue of civilizations. Examples of these exhibitions are Alexandria International Biennale for the Mediterranean Countries, Cairo International Biennale, Egyptian International Print Triennale and Aswan International Sculpture Symposium.

National Exhibitions

Their aims are conducted through two mechanisms, the first of which brings artists under a common umbrella of group exhibitions planned to cast much light on the latest creative works of art. The second mechanism is represented by solo exhibitions in which artists display their individual experiments. The group exhibitions include the Youth Salon, the National Art Exhibition, the Salon of Mini Works of Art, Exhibition of Arabic Calligraphy, the Nile Salon for Photography, the Exhibition of Creativity of Egyptian Woman, Jewelry Exhibition and Sculpture Exhibition.

Overseas Exhibitions

Egypt is always keen to intensify its participation in overseas exhibitions, whether solo or group, etc. to enhance the creative aspects of its modern art. It is widely-known that Egypt's fine art alone stepped into the international limelight in the early 20th  century when Egyptian artists Mahmoud Mukhtar, Ahmed Sabry and successive generations displayed their works in private pavilions opened in major museums abroad. Today's generation made a tremendous success overseas when four young artists won the grand prix in Venice Biennale.

Local Exhibitions

They comprise solo and group exhibitions that are supervised by the Sector in accordance with the annual program.

Artistic Exhibitions

They comprise the following Exhibitions:

-                      Egyptian Museum of Modern Art,

-                      Mr. and Mrs. Mahmoud Khalil Museum,

-                      Mahmoud Said Center of Museum,

-                      Museum of Islamic Ceramic,

-                      Geziera Museum,

-                      Mahmoud Mukhtar Museum,

-                      Mohamed Nagy Museum,

-                      Effat Nagy and Saad el-Khadem,

-                      Alexandria's Art Museum and Library,

-                      Prince Mohammed Waheed-Eddin Selim Museum,

-                      Art and Garden Museum,

-                      Hassan Heshmat Museum,

-                      Glass Art Museum.

National Museums

They Comprise:

-                      Mostafa Kamel Museum,

-                      Nation's House (Saad Zaghloul Museum)

-                      Ahmed Shawky Museum,

-                      Taha Hussein Muesum.

Museum of Modern Egyptian Art

It consists of 10 halls over three floors, in addition to an open-air display at the front of the museum for the large-scale sculpture works. It comprises thousands of artistic pieces that represent various art schools since the early 20th century era until now. Some of these pieces of art are borrowed to be displayed by other museums or in public places inside and outside Egypt. The current building of the museum was built in 1936. It was developed and equipped to be the permanent headquarters of the Museum of Egyptian Modern Art, which was officially opened in late October 1991. After that, the museum underwent a comprehensive development process for the museum display systems and lighting systems. It was opened on March 5, 2005.

Mr. and Mrs. Mahmoud Khalil Museum

 It is the largest art museum in Egypt. It contains masterpieces of international art; photography, sculpture and ceramics. It has a total area of ​​538.75 m 2, surrounded by a garden of 2,400 m 2. It overlooks the Nile River from the eastern side and Giza Street from the western side. It was built around 1915, in the French style. The museum was opened in 1995 after restoration and development operations that have continued since 1989. The Mr. and Mrs. Mohamed Mahmoud Khalil Museum is one of the most important museums in Egypt and the Arab region. It includes a huge collection of masterpieces of international art such as photography, sculpture, pottery, and others. However, the collection of works by nineteenth century artists in Europe remains the most important and famous because it includes 876 works by the most prominent artists of the influential school, and some works by the artists of the Romantic and classical school. Mahmoud Khalil Museum comprises an important and vital branch; a special place for the changing museum exhibitions of the Egyptian and international pioneers of fine art. It is "Ofoq" hall for changing exhibitions". It is a 340m hall, which is considered one of the biggest specialized halls in the Middle East. On March 8, 1997, it was inaugurated by the First lady. The first exhibition was (Faces from Fayoum). Since then, the hall has continued its distinguished artistic exhibitions.

Mahmoud Said Center of Museums

 The centre comprises three museums, namely; "Mahmoud Said," "Seif and Adham Wanly," and "Modern art". The museum is built on an area of ​​732 m 2, in addition to the spaces that reach 2,176 m 2. It lies where the palace that was inhabited by the artist Mahmoud Said, one of the pioneers of modern Egyptian art. It became a center for museums and was inaugurated in April 7, 2000.

Museum of Islamic Ceramic

The Museum of Islamic Ceramic occupies the ground and first floors of Prince Amr Ibrahim Palace, a member of the royal family. The palace was confiscated after the July 1952 revolution. Its construction dates back to 1924. It is located in Al-Gezira, Zamalek, Cairo. The building is built in the Islamic architecture style. The museum comprises halls decorated with Islamic ornaments on an area of ​​490 m2. It contains many artistic pieces of Islamic architecture (necklaces - mashrabiyas - ceramics – stalactites). The museum display includes 315 pieces of different types of ceramic products that belong to many eras and regions, as well as the various methods and styles that were known and used during those eras. The museum also comprises a special hall for the pioneering ceramist Said El-Sadr, which includes 41 works of his creative ceramic art. This museum is the first qualitative museum of Islamic ceramics in the Middle East.

Mahmoud Mukhtar Museum

The Museum is the first museum for an Egyptian sculptor. It was established to honor and preserve his memory and in an appreciation of his art and his uniqueness. The museum lies in the most beautiful part in Cairo amidst Al-Gazera gardens, in Al-hurria Garden, and in front of Cairo Opera House. Mukhtar is considered the first sculptor in the modern era to represent in his works the Egyptian identity and to remodel sculpture since the Egyptian art stopped at the end of the Pharaonic era. The museum contains 175 works by Mukhtar completed in various materials, in addition to his special tools that he used in sculpting, as well as rare documents and photos of Mukhtar and the most important international awards and honors he received. The museum was reopened after it was renovated and developed to comply with the latest museum display systems.

Mohammed Nagy Museum

 The museum commemorates Painter Mohammed Nagy, who co-pioneered the Egyptian modern art after his return from Florence. Nagy lived in the Mediterranean city of Alexandria and traveled to Italy to study art. He had to return to Egypt prior to the outbreak of the World War One. Entertaining a radical attitude against classic rules of art, he devoted himself to Impressionism. In his work, he produced a blend of Egypt’s past and present. He was fascinated with Nature and murals made by ancient Egyptian artisans. His paintings are beautifully transparent, displaying powerful and elaborate compositions.
Determined to complete his painting “Alexandria School” Nagy decided in 1952 to turn a plot of land he owned in Hadayek al-Ahram into a studio. He began to paint the monumental work in 1939 when he was the director of the Museum of Modern Art. In the wake of his death in his studio, the Ministry of Culture in 1962 paid tribute to the late artist by buying his studio and turning it into a museum. The painter’s sister Effat Nagy, also a painter, appreciatively offered 40 works to the new museum, which also received a large collection of sketches and the late brother’s memorabilia. On July 13, 1968, the Minister of Culture Tharwat Okasha opened the museum officially. Its exhibits increased significantly in 1987, especially after the Ministry of Culture bought larger number of the artist’s oil paintings. The ministry’s enthusiasm in this respect invited the painter’s devoted sister to offer more of her brother’s works to the museum, increasing the number of its exhibits to 1200. The Mohammed Nagy Museum was re-opened in 1991 after it successfully underwent a grand renovation and restoration plan.

Effat Nagy and Saad al-Khadem Museum

The museum is a living memory of the two painters Mrs. Effat Nagy and her husband Saad al-Khadem. Mrs. Nagy developed a burning passion for art. Her drawings and paintings display her fascination with legends and fairy-tales popular in the Egyptian society.
Al-Khadem died in September 1987 and his devoted wife died in October 1994.
The 520-metre museum, which is a landmark in the Cairo’s district of Zaytoun, exhibits 198 works of art and pottery. The exhibits also include the couple’s private library, the titles of which include 15 doctoral theses and 26 studies for masters. The museum was opened in April 8, 2001.

Mohammed Nagy Museum

The museum commemorates Painter Mohammed Nagy, who co-pioneered the Egyptian modern art after his return from Florence. Nagy lived in the Mediterranean city of Alexandria and traveled to Italy to study art. He had to return to Egypt prior to the outbreak of the World War One. Entertaining a radical attitude against classic rules of art, he devoted himself to Impressionism. In his work, he produced a blend of Egypt’s past and present. He was fascinated with Nature and murals made by ancient Egyptian artisans. His paintings are beautifully transparent, displaying powerful and elaborate compositions.
Determined to complete his painting “Alexandria School” Nagy decided in 1952 to turn a plot of land he owned in Hadayek al-Ahram into a studio. He began to paint the monumental work in 1939 when he was the director of the Museum of Modern Art. In the wake of his death in his studio, the Ministry of Culture in 1962 paid tribute to the late artist by buying his studio and turning it into a museum. The painter’s sister Effat Nagy, also a painter, appreciatively offered 40 works to the new museum, which also received a large collection of sketches and the late brother’s memorabilia. On July 13, 1968, the Minister of Culture Tharwat Okasha opened the museum officially. Its exhibits increased significantly in 1987, especially after the Ministry of Culture bought larger number of the artist’s oil paintings. The ministry’s enthusiasm in this respect invited the painter’s devoted sister to offer more of her brother’s works to the museum, increasing the number of its exhibits to 1200. The Mohammed Nagy Museum was re-opened in 1991 after it successfully underwent a grand renovation and restoration plan.

Effat Nagy and Saad al-Khadem Museum

The museum is a living memory of the two painters Mrs. Effat Nagy and her husband Saad al-Khadem. Mrs. Nagy developed a burning passion for art. Her drawings and paintings display her fascination with legends and fairy-tales popular in the Egyptian society.
Al-Khadem died in September 1987 and his devoted wife died in October 1994.
The 520-metre museum, which is a landmark in the Cairo’s district of Zaytoun, exhibits 198 works of art and pottery. The exhibits also include the couple’s private library, the titles of which include 15 doctoral theses and 26 studies for masters. The museum was opened in April 8, 2001.

Hassan Hishmat Muesuem

Sculptor Hassan Hishmat carved a niche for himself as a pioneer and founder of an individual school of sculpture. Greatly influenced by the local environment Heshmat was the first Egyptian sculptor who cast mini porcelain statues, which were widely admired at home and in foreign countries in 1960. In 1984 the sculptor shifted his attention to small-size and monumental sculptures, and murals. Heshmat also distinguished himself by his impressive ceramics. His monumental sculptures, murals and ceramics are the landmarks of squares and institutions in Egypt and abroad.
The museum is opened at the artist’s 1200-metre villa in Ain Shams district in Cairo. It was inaugurated in 1960 by the then Minister of Culture Tharwat Okasha. Its exhibits consist of 235 sculptures and ceramics. The artist wisely opened a properly-equipped workshop on the first floor. Eager to widen the cultural and artistic awareness of his young neighbours in the district Heshmat decided in 1998 to present the museum to the Ministry of Culture to expand its role in this respect.

Al-Nasr Museum of Modern Art in Port Said

Port Said witnessed major events, the most important of which was the tripartite aggression led in 1956 by England, France and Israel after Egypt nationalized Suez Canal. The city was the stronghold of heroic national resistance, which forced the aggressors to pull out. In 1967, the city’s residents were evacuated from their homes after Israel launched its military attack against the Egyptian territory. The Suez Canal was closed down. However, after the Egyptian army won a decisive victory against Israel in 1973, restoring its control on the waterway, the displaced people returned triumphantly to Port Said. The Suez Canal was also reopened after its eight-year closure.
To commemorate the city’s glorious past the Ministry of Culture represented by the Sector of Fine Art opened Al-Nasr Museum of Modern Art on December 25, 1995. Up to 75 paintings, sculptures, drawings, graphics and ceramics made by preeminent Egyptian artists are on display. Some works of art highlighted the issue of war and peace.
On the other hand, the museum’s officials organize artistic and cultural soirées and seminars to activate cultural life in Port Said. Talents are also given special interest as they are encouraged to join artistic workshops sponsored by experienced artists and qualified staff.

Nation's House Museum( Saad Zagloul)

It is located on Saad Zagloul Street, next to the tomb of Saad; the house of the leader Saad Zaghloul, to which he moved in 1902. In 1944, Mrs. Safia Zaghlol bequeathed  Saad Zagloul’s house to be a museum, a living witness to the struggle and sacrifices of the sons of the nation for liberating their country. The government of the July Revolution made it a national museum. The museum contains, in addition to the furniture and personal belongings of Saad Pasha and his wife,  important documents and photos, a library that includes rare books, and many badges, decorations and personal gifts. The museum was opened after renovation on January 16, 2003. Moreover,  an important cultural center was established by reusing the basement of the house to turn it into (Saad Zagloul Cultural Center).

Ahmad Shawky Museum

On 1972, late President Anwar El-Sadat gave directives to turn Karmet Ibn Hanie into Ahmad Shawky Museum. It was opened on June 17, 1977. Then, it was reopened after renovation and establishing a cultural center (Karmet Ibn Hanie Cultural Center) in 1996. The museum contains about 1153 holdings, including furniture, paintings, antiques, and photographs, in addition to the medals and honorary clothes of the Prince of Poets, Ahmad Shawky, as well as some gifts and documents presented to him on the occasion of his coronation as the Prince of Poets. The museum overlooks the Nile and covers an area of ​​1433 meters2.

Taha Hussein Museum

The Taha Hussein Museum chronicles fruitful chapters of the life of Dr. Taha Hussein, the blind man-of-letters who was widely acknowledged as the Dean of Arabic Literature. The museum is opened at Hussein’s two-storey villa, in which he lived from 1955 until his death. His widow lived there until she died in 1989. The museum’s first floor is now a showcase for Hussein's publications, studies and foreign books he translated into Arabic. The first floor also has Dr. Hussein’s study and the reception, in which he used to receive preeminent members in the literary community, writers, artists and art scholars on Sundays.
Visitors will be greeted by a bronze bust of Dr. Taha Hussein made by sculptor Abdel-Kader Rezk. The exhibits also include five sculptures and a number of paintings made by Egyptian painters: Youssef Kamel, Ragheb Ayyad, Mohammed Nagy and Ahmed Sabry. The museum’s invaluable assets include more than 100 rare recordings of classic music and up to 3000 books. The second floor displays Taha Hussein's bedroom, his memorabilia and the personal belongings of his wife. The Ministry of Culture bought the villa in 1992 to turn it into a museum. His family appreciatively collaborated with the ministry by offering his international and national recognitions to the museum, including the Nile Medallion. Moreover, the ministry wisely decided to open a new cultural facility, Ramatan Cultural Centre, to continue the cultural role the villa used to play. The museum, with the new cultural center, was re-opened by the government on July 15, 1997.

Denshoway Museum

The village of Denshoway in Menofia province witnessed a catastrophic event on Monday, June 11, 1906. A group of British army officers set a number of pigeon houses on fire while they, ignoring warnings from villagers, were carelessly shooting pigeons in the village. Panic-stricken villagers rushed to the scene. The British officers shot at the agitated people to force them to disperse. The situation worsened after a woman was shot dead during the mayhem. In the meantime, an officer was killed by the sun-heat. Enraged, the British officers shot dead a villager and fled. The village witnessed a summary justice, in which a number of villagers were hanged in public to terrorize the entire village. Other villagers were brutally flogged in front of their families. The brutalities of the British occupation forces agitated the public opinion at home and abroad. With its 160 exhibits (paintings, sculptures, etc.), the Denshoway Museum is considered a living memory of this tragic incident.
The museum was opened in 1999 after renovations.

Mostafa Kamel Museum

Mostafa Kamel (1874-1908) is widely regarded as one of the great Egyptian national leaders. The eloquent speaker and writer spent his short life exhorting the Egyptian nation to rise against the British occupation. He launched his national campaign overseas and held conferences to draw the attention of world nations to the sufferings of the Egyptian people under the British occupation. He also published “Al-Liwaa” (the Herald) newspaper.
The museum is opened at the shrine of the two national leaders Mostafa Kamel and Mohammed Farid in Qalaa district in Cairo. The idea was first presented in 1955 by the Minister of Culture at the time Fathi Radwan (who is also buried in the Shrine) to establish a museum, which could shed much light on the life and the national struggle led by Mostafa Kamel. The building bears the hallmarks of Islamic architecture. A giant brass chandelier hangs from the ceiling. The walls are internally lined with marble. The museum is also surrounded by a big garden. The museum was opened officially in April 1956. Its 253 exhibits comprise books and letters written by Mostafa Kamal; and photographs of his relatives and friends. The museum also displays Kamel’s suits, cutlery in his kitchen, his study room and a number of books authored by historian Abdel-Rahman al-Rafie who is also buried in the Shrine.
The museum was re-opened after renovation on February 8, 2001.

Mansoura National Museum

Mansoura National Museum, also known as Dar (house) Ibn Loqman, is a living testimony to the steadfastness and sacrifices made by the Egyptian people throughout their historic resistance to the French military expedition led by French King Louis IX in Egypt in 1249. Landing on the Egyptian land, the invaders could not by any means imagine that they would suffer humiliation and incur crushing defeat at the hands of the Egyptian people. French King Louis IX was captured and led handcuffed to the House of Ibn Loqman. He was released on May 7, 1250.
The museum’s paintings and military gear chronicle the development of the battles in Mansoura. The Mansoura National Museum, which was first opened on May 7, 1960 by late President Gamal Abdel-Nasser, is divided into three areas:-
1- Dar (House) Ibn Loqman, which overlooks the Nile. It was built in 1218 by Fakhrul-Din Ibn al-Qadi, the chief judge in Egypt.
2- A modern and well-equipped hall, in which statues and paintings are exhibited.
3- An art gallery, in which exhibitions, cultural soirees and seminars are held.
The museum was reopened in 1997 after it successfully underwent a thorough restoration and renovations. Its 46-piece assets include the invaders’ weaponry and military gear. The most important exhibits are, however, the metal helmet of the French King and a chair he was offered in his jail. There are also sculptures and busts of King Louis IX and Prince Toran Shah. A couple of two oil paintings highlight the battle in the town of Faraskour and King Louis IX being led handcuffed to his jail to pay the ransom before he was set free. A third painting glorifies the major battle in the city of Mansoura. The museum’s paintings and sculptures were made by Egyptian artists who were enthusiastic to contribute to reviving a glorious chapter in the history of Egypt during Islamic era.

History of Wax Museum

The Wax Museum was built in 1934 by artist Fouad Abdel-Malek, who studied waxworks in France and England. He received much help from a group of devoted artists and art admirers, who were inspired by internationally acclaimed waxwork museums in London, Amsterdam, Hong Kong, Las Vegas and New York. The Wax Museum in Egypt was initially opened at Tigran Palace at Ibrahim Pasha St. and moved in 1937 to a villa at Qasr al-Eini St. before it eventually arrived in its present location at Helwan district. Although the museum was opened officially on August 6, 1950, it was added to the list of art museums supervised by the Ministry of Culture represented by the Sector of Fine Art in 1997. Its exhibits include 26 panoramic views and 116 wax sculptures. Columns of shrines and traditional dresses also add to the curiousity-arousing atmosphere created in the museum. The exhibits are the reconstruction of religious, social and historical scenes and events such as the Virgin Mary, Jesus the Christ and her cousin at the cave of Abu-Serga in old Cairo. The last moments in the life of Egypt’s Queen Cleopatra are also reconstructed. Cleopatra, in the throes of death, is seen escorted by her maid and a priest. Visitors will also come across King Solomon and his throne. Other panoramic views illustrate Mohammed Ali Pasha inspecting the fleet of ships and the opening of Suez Canal.

Art Palace

The palace occupies the Nile Grand Hall at the former Gezira Fair Grounds. The palace, which was part of the Royal Agricultural Society, was designed by architect Mostafa Pasha Fahmy to act as a venue for agro-industrial exhibitions. In 1980 the hall was transformed into an art gallery and was officially opened in 1984 to entertain the first edition of Cairo International Biennale. Moreover, the hall acted as the venue for four editions of the Cairo Biennale, four editions of Youth Salon, the premiere of Cairo International Biennale for Ceramics. However, the hall was closed after it sustained much damage during the earthquake, which hit Cairo in 1992. Ambitious restoration and development plans successfully turned the building into a well-equipped Palace of Art, which was opened by President Hosni Mubarak in 1998. The four-storey palace has art galleries, cinema hall and lecture room. Two galleries on the ground floor are sunlit. The Palace of Art also has a library, which is widely regarded as one of the major artistic libraries in Egypt. Its titles and facilities attract a large number of students, scholars, art critics and journalists. Since its opening the palace has been acting as the venue for major art exhibitions and biennales such as the National Art Exhibition, the Youth Salon, Cairo International Art Biennale, Cairo International Ceramics Biennale, the Egyptian International Print Triennale, etc.

Art Center in Zamalek

Built in 1907 in Zamalek,  Cairo the building was initially the palace of Ali Pasha Fahmy. In 1958 Dr. Tharwat Okasha, the first Minister of Culture in Egypt, decided to purchase the palace to act as the ministry’s main office. However, in 1971 the palace underwent gross negligence. It was abandoned to act as a storeroom of the Ministry of Information. In 1975 late artist Abdel-Hamid Hamdy, who was the chief of the former General Authority for Art and Literature, successfully persuaded the then Minister of Culture Youssef al-Sebaie to retake the palace. It was also Mr. Hamdy who decided to turn the palace into the Centre of Art, the first of its kind in Egypt. Six of its art galleries are named after ancient Egyptian god Akhenaton. Since 1976 the Centre of Art has witnessed hundreds of major art festivals, events, concerts and film screening programs. Moreover, the Centre of Art exhibited works by internationally renowned artists such as Salvador Dali, Henry Moore, Pablo Picasso, Di Creco and David Hockney. Further, several editions of the National Art Gallery took place in the facility from 1976 to 1988. The Centre of Art also witnessed events of major international exhibitions such as Cairo International Art Biennale, Cairo International Ceramic Biennale, the Egyptian International Print Triennale and the Youth Salon. In the meantime, the Salon of Mini Works of Art is organized annually at the Centre of Art.

The Gezira Art Centre

It occupies the palace of Prince Amru Ibrahim. Its art galleries are named after four Egyptian pioneering artists Ahmed Sabry (1889-1995), Ragheb Ayyad (1892-1983), al-Hussein Fawzy (1905-1999) and Kamal Khalifa (1926-1968). According to the palace’s historical account, it was prepared in 1971 to serve cultural purposes, acting as a venue for the private collection of art withdrawn from the palace of Mr. and Mrs. Mahmoud Khalil in the wake of a decision by late President Anwar Sadat to turn the couple’s residence in Giza into presidential office. Sadat opened the new cultural facility (Palace of Amru Ibrahim) in October 1979. Its basement was also equipped to act as an art gallery named Al-Salam. The facility was upgraded remarkably under the supervision of the Ministry of Culture in 1988. After a 10 year-long renovation, the Museum of Islamic Ceramics and the exhibition of European Art Wonders were opened at the Centre’s four galleries. Moreover, an art gallery on the ground floor was dedicated as a permanent exhibition of the works of art pioneering ceramicist Said al-Sadr (1909-1986). It must be said that since its opening in 1999 by Mrs. Suzanne Mubarak, the Gezira Art Centre has been intensely contributing to cultural and artistic activities in the country. It also became the venue for major international and national art and cultural events.

The 15th May Center of Contemporary art

Due to its unique geographical position in Cairo’s southern district of Helwan, the 15th May  Centre of Contemporary Art plays a central role in the enhancement of intellectual, cultural and artistic activities in the area. It has workshops and studios (graphics-sculpture-ceramics-drawing, painting, textile and tapestry, glasswork, carpentry, etc.), which encourage youth talents and art admirers to come forward and experiment with applied arts. It also organizes seminars, cultural soirees, conferences. It has a cinema hall. Moreover, the opening of the Club of Information Technology has given art students and scholars a good opportunity to make the best use of the information technology, such as the Internet and multi media for reasonable fees.

Wekalet El Ghouri Arts center (Al-Ghoury Atelier)

The original building was built in 1504 A.D by sultan Qunsuwah El Ghouri. Wekalet El Ghouri, is an architecturally stunning arts center in El Azhar area in Central Cairo, operating under the Ministry of Culture and the Cultural Development Fund.

The main objective of Al Gouhri of Complex Arts Center is to revive the Egyptian artistic heritage in a new and developed way that copes with the modern era.

At the present time, it includes ten craft sections targeted to be increased to revive a number of crafts that are at risk of extinction, namely (Arabic carpentry - precise carpentry – shell decorations- engraving on copper - tent decoration - stained glass - folk accessories - wood engraving - metals and wood engraving- folk and traditional costumes).

Helwan Batik House

It was the ancient Egyptian artist who was the first to come up with batik. During the Ptolemaic era, during which Alexandria established itself as the civilized world’s center of culture and art, Egypt-made batik reached a peak and had a tremendous popularity. The Roman craftsmen did not show less interest in the Egyptian batik. Rather, fascinated with the craft, they imported wool and silk from India to produce impressive pieces. However, Coptic artisans  were inspired instead by icons illustrating people and animals. Muslim craftsmen on the other hand replaced Coptic icons with geometric, floral, and animal patterns and drawings. The industry, moreover, prospered after Muslim Caliphs sponsored gifted craftsmen, encouraging them to innovate their designs and techniques. However, batik underwent chaotic circumstances under the Ottoman ruling for different reasons. That was why the House of Batiks in Helwan was established in 1970 to help revive the Egyptian craft and restore its glory. The decision was made by the former Minister of Culture Tharwat Ukasha. The house is also equipped to inspire the curiosity of youth talents about their ancestors’ industry and its characteristic features and technique. Batik exhibitions are also held at home and abroad. The House of Batiks in Helwan includes four departments: design and drawing, training, operation workshop and dying department.
In 1994, Minister of Culture Farouk Hosni opened the House of Batiks in Helwan after it underwent renovation and upgrading programs (initiated in 1987), which included the opening of seminar hall and cultural activities.

Center of Traditional Art and Heritage Researches

The Centre is basically planned to conduct researches into heritage and arts. It also exhibits works made by widely-acclaimed artists, who are keen to produce extraordinary visions through drawing, silkscreen, etc.. They derive much of their inspiration from Islamic heritage and art. The Centre also pays increasing attention to crafts such as glassworks, hand-made bags, suitcases, galabiyyas, curtains and pillows. Within a wise plan sought to market its products the Centre takes part in national and international exhibitions and fairs. The Centre has three sections: Printmaking, batik and painting on glass.

Center of Art and Life

The Centre of Art and Life was first established in 1969 at the Palace of Manasterly in Manial Roda, Cairo under the supervision of great artist Hamed Said. In 1990 the Centre was moved to Sabil (public water fountain) Om Abbas in Khalifa district in Cairo. Sabil Om Abbas, which was named after the mother of Khedive Abbas, was built in the style of Islamic architecture during the Ottoman ruling in the 19th century.
The Centre was basically recommended to explore the roots of the Egyptian identity on the one hand and enhance the interaction of art and local environment on the other. Moreover, the Centre was designed to help preserve the unique techniques, styles and characteristics of Egyptian crafts and artistic heritage, whether those produced by the ancient Egyptian craftsmen, the Coptic or Muslims. The Centre also supervises researches into the aesthetics of urban heritage within contemporary vision. It also gives special attention to glassworks, printmaking, batik, art education, embroidery, and traditional costumes.

Fine Arts Sector Services

-Exhibitions: The Sector provides so many services for artists in terms of giving them the opportunity to display their works in the Sector's many exhibition halls in various areas including Cairo, Alexandria, and some governorates. In addition to that, the Sector enables them to participate in many national festivals and events in cooperation with other institutions and bodies. The Sector also undertakes, through its departments, the preparation of all advertising materials for exhibitions such as posters, flyers and invitations, all for free, as the Sector bears all expenses. It also prepares and ships the works of Egyptian artists to be displayed in any of the countries of the world, for the sake of the artists' convenience.

Fine Arts Sector Website:

It includes the Encyclopedia of Egyptian fine artists, which contains thousands of biographies and works of Egyptian fine artists from different generations, starting from the pioneers  generation until today, taking into consideration the daily updates.  This is achieved by specialized cadres trained to deal with modern technology, in order to provide the opportunity for all artists to present their works to Internet users in Egypt and the world. Moreover, the website provides an opportunity for the public audience to follow the news of the fine arts, in terms of activities and events. Besides, it makes visiting all art and national museums and reviewing their valuable contents available. In addition, it allows artists to communicate with Arab-world and world artists through the sector's website.

Family and Child

The Sector provides many services for children, foremost of which is the technical workshops that are held in various locations during summer vacations, mid-year vacations, and official occasions. They conclude be organizing exhibitions to be opened by the Sector's chairperson and leaders, with awarding certificates of appreciation and prizes for excellent children.

All museums affiliated to the Sector receive children and school students at discounted-ticket prices and provide all facilities for school-students visitors by allocating museum curators and guides who provide them with all facilities and answer their questions regarding the museum and its contents.

The sector offers some activities that are based on direct contact between the artist and the audience in the open sites and gardens. This encourages families to take their children to these places to view the creative arts with, which in turn stimulates the child’s sense of creativity. Some of his exhibitions are held in Al-Mostaqbal Library, where the majority of the attendees are children.

For more information:

http://www.fineart.gov.eg/DefaultE.aspx?PageK=1

 


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