Maspero

Maspero

[img src=http://www.darb1718.com/wp-content/flagallery/maspero/thumbs/thumbs_267449_2045575633352_1663254969_1999090_5326101_n.jpg]1600Ali Abdel Mohsen “The Air We Breathe/Riding the Waves” – 2011 Drawings/paintings
Ali Abdel Mohsen<br />“The Air We Breathe/Riding the Waves” – 2011<br />Drawings/paintings
[img src=http://www.darb1718.com/wp-content/flagallery/maspero/thumbs/thumbs_264393_2045572153265_1663254969_1999075_1289476_n.jpg]330Khaled Hafez “Visions of Contaminated Memories” - 2007 Video installation
Khaled Hafez <br />“Visions of Contaminated Memories” - 2007<br />Video installation
[img src=http://www.darb1718.com/wp-content/flagallery/maspero/thumbs/thumbs_268796_2045572313269_1663254969_1999076_3693920_n.jpg]190Ibrahim Saad “Ekhtarna lak” - 2011
Ibrahim Saad<br />“Ekhtarna lak” - 2011 <br />Video installation
[img src=http://www.darb1718.com/wp-content/flagallery/maspero/thumbs/thumbs_269816_2045573273293_1663254969_1999080_258968_n.jpg]180Moataz Nasr Eldin “Man made” – 2006 Installation
Moataz Nasr Eldin<br />“Man made” – 2006<br />Installation
[img src=http://www.darb1718.com/wp-content/flagallery/maspero/thumbs/thumbs_261802_2045571513249_1663254969_1999072_6636709_n.jpg]200Obada - Amanda Kerdahi “Remember to Feed the Fish” - 2011 Installation
Obada - Amanda Kerdahi <br />“Remember to Feed the Fish” - 2011<br />Installation
[img src=http://www.darb1718.com/wp-content/flagallery/maspero/thumbs/thumbs_263740_2045572953285_1663254969_1999078_7290401_n.jpg]190Engy Ali “Sanzaru” – 2011
Engy Ali <br />“Sanzaru” – 2011<br />Graphics collage
[img src=http://www.darb1718.com/wp-content/flagallery/maspero/thumbs/thumbs_263864_2045571353245_1663254969_1999071_3546326_n.jpg]110Obada - Amanda Kerdahi “Remember to Feed the Fish” - 2011
Obada - Amanda Kerdahi <br />“Remember to Feed the Fish” - 2011<br />Installation
[img src=http://www.darb1718.com/wp-content/flagallery/maspero/thumbs/thumbs_263954_2045572673278_1663254969_1999077_4921855_n.jpg]110Maspero
Maspero
[img src=http://www.darb1718.com/wp-content/flagallery/maspero/thumbs/thumbs_263102_2045571913259_1663254969_1999074_3661507_n.jpg]130hmed Sabry “El Brenss TV” – 2009/2010/2011 Painting
Ahmed Sabry<br />“El Brenss TV” – 2009/2010/2011<br />Painting
[img src=http://www.darb1718.com/wp-content/flagallery/maspero/thumbs/thumbs_264237_2045576073363_1663254969_1999093_2573041_n.jpg]120Adham Bakry “Blueprint” - 2011 Graffiti mural
Adham Bakry <br />“Blueprint” - 2011<br />Graffiti mural
[img src=http://www.darb1718.com/wp-content/flagallery/maspero/thumbs/thumbs_268228_2045574033312_1663254969_1999082_5509446_n.jpg]270Nermine El Ansari “Radiation and Radio” - 2011
Nermine El Ansari <br />“Radiation and Radio” - 2011<br />Painting, 360X250 cm
[img src=http://www.darb1718.com/wp-content/flagallery/maspero/thumbs/thumbs_268513_2045575713354_1663254969_1999091_2172484_n.jpg]130Neobyrd Music Performance
Neobyrd Music Performance
[img src=http://www.darb1718.com/wp-content/flagallery/maspero/thumbs/thumbs_269001_2045575313344_1663254969_1999088_6501819_n.jpg]70Ali Abdel Mohsen “The Air We Breathe/Riding the Waves” – 2011 Drawings/paintings
Ali Abdel Mohsen<br />“The Air We Breathe/Riding the Waves” – 2011<br />Drawings/paintings
[img src=http://www.darb1718.com/wp-content/flagallery/maspero/thumbs/thumbs_269619_2045570793231_1663254969_1999068_5881318_n.jpg]90Obada - Amanda Kerdahi “Remember to Feed the Fish” - 2011
Obada - Amanda Kerdahi <br />“Remember to Feed the Fish” - 2011<br />Installation
[img src=http://www.darb1718.com/wp-content/flagallery/maspero/thumbs/thumbs_269663_2045576513374_1663254969_1999098_6338279_n.jpg]90May El Hossamy “MASPIRO 1960-2011” – 2011 Installation
May El Hossamy <br />“MASPIRO 1960-2011” – 2011<br />Installation
[img src=http://www.darb1718.com/wp-content/flagallery/maspero/thumbs/thumbs_270341_2045571753255_1663254969_1999073_3818996_n.jpg]70May El Hossamy “MASPIRO 1960-2011” – 2011 Installation
May El Hossamy <br />“MASPIRO 1960-2011” – 2011<br />Installation
[img src=http://www.darb1718.com/wp-content/flagallery/maspero/thumbs/thumbs_270573_2045575073338_8131200_n.jpg]70Ali Abdel Mohsen “The Air We Breathe/Riding the Waves” – 2011
Ali Abdel Mohsen<br />“The Air We Breathe/Riding the Waves” – 2011<br />Drawings/paintings
[img src=http://www.darb1718.com/wp-content/flagallery/maspero/thumbs/thumbs_270712_2045575193341_1663254969_1999087_1420480_n.jpg]100Ali Abdel Mohsen “The Air We Breathe/Riding the Waves” – 2011
Ali Abdel Mohsen<br />“The Air We Breathe/Riding the Waves” – 2011<br />Drawings/paintings
[img src=http://www.darb1718.com/wp-content/flagallery/maspero/thumbs/thumbs_281500_2045575433347_1663254969_1999089_7021890_n.jpg]120Ali Abdel Mohsen “The Air We Breathe/Riding the Waves” – 2011 Drawings/paintings
Ali Abdel Mohsen<br />“The Air We Breathe/Riding the Waves” – 2011<br />Drawings/paintings
[img src=http://www.darb1718.com/wp-content/flagallery/maspero/thumbs/thumbs_281796_2045573073288_1663254969_1999079_6132237_n.jpg]80Moataz Nasr Eldin “Man made” – 2006
Moataz Nasr Eldin<br />“Man made” – 2006<br />Installation
[img src=http://www.darb1718.com/wp-content/flagallery/maspero/thumbs/thumbs_284070_2045574313319_1663254969_1999084_2768814_n.jpg]110Maspero
Maspero
[img src=http://www.darb1718.com/wp-content/flagallery/maspero/thumbs/thumbs_284224_2045574753330_1663254969_1999085_4780607_n.jpg]70Hany Rashed “Stories from Maspero” - 2011 Mixed media
Hany Rashed <br />“Stories from Maspero” - 2011<br />Mixed media
[img src=http://www.darb1718.com/wp-content/flagallery/maspero/thumbs/thumbs_284612_2045573633302_1663254969_1999081_5176651_n.jpg]90Hany Rashed “Stories from Maspero” - 2011 Mixed media
Hany Rashed <br />“Stories from Maspero” - 2011<br />Mixed media

July – 2011 

On July 21, 1960, Egyptian State Television sent out its first broadcast from the building commonly known as MASPIRO. This was the first step in what would become a long history of shockingly bad programming, hilariously outdated policies, and of course, relentless propaganda. Since its inception, Egyptian State Television has been taking its audiences for granted, and over the years its legacy has become one of distorting of the truth, spreading misinformation, and enforcing its regime-mandated ideals on a public with little or no access to alternative outlets.

 

In terms of its content, the Maspero channels have become landmarks of kitsch, from the low-production values of melodramatic soap operas, to educational programs seemingly designed to stunt intellectual growth, to the disparate hodgepodge of unrelated, irrelevant, and mostly surreal clips that constitute ‘variety shows.’ Friday nights were Mawakef wa Tara’ef. Wednesday nights were Ekhtarna Lak and MacGyver. Its message seemingly that all Asian people are Osheen and the moral bankruptcy of the West will be the end of us all.

The sheer ridiculousness of Egyptian State Television has informed the collective consciousness in a way unparalleled by any other medium. It can be seen as largely and directly responsible for any number of society’s current woes.

 

Since the 2011 Revolution in Egypt, the devastating effects of Maspero’s noxious broadcasts reached their peak, further dividing the population in a time of great uncertainty and fear, before shamelessly backtracking after the fall of both Mubarak and Morsi in the unrealistic hope that its long history of unabashed sycophancy will be forgotten or, at the very least, forgiven.

 

Although most vividly exemplified by television broadcasts, this phenomenon was in no way limited to them. For decades, the airwaves have been similarly infected by government-approved radio transmissions also broadcasting from Maspero. And while state-owned newspapers and publications were printed in and distributed from separate buildings, they too were little more than a literary manifestation of the tyrannical mentality which Maspero came to symbolize.

 

As a cultural, technological, and even architectural icon, Maspero has, for generations, cast a long shadow over the Egyptian population. In this exhibition artists are invited to reflect on how their lives and national identity have been shaped by it.

Participating artists
Reham Abouelwafa, Engy Aly, Nermine El Ansari, Adham Bakry, May El Hossamy, Khaled Hafez, Amanda Kerdahi, Moataz Nasreldin, Obada, Hany Rashed, Ibrahim Saad, Ahmed Sabry
Curator Ali Abdel Mohsen

Press
Ali Abdel Mohsen, 'Art East', Middle East Art, August 30 2011.
Ali Abdel Mohsen, ''Mspero' exhibition: can state TV to be envisioned beyond its political role?', Egypt Independant, July 21 2011.
Ali Abdel Mohsen, ''Blueprint' by Ahmed Bakry  ', Egypt Independant, July 21 2011.

 

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