Artists Talk: Henry Chalfant in Discussion with Ganzeer on Engaged Art
7 – 9PM
Henry Chalfant and Ganzeer (Alwan Artist in Residence) discuss Engaged Art
This series of conversations is an occasion that aims to bring attention to the work of Middle Eastern artists.
In this event, the participants Henry Chalfant and Egyptian artist Mohamed Fahmy, known as “Ganzeer” (the Chain), will address art as an engaged practice, as a way of being and thinking aesthetically, outside of the studio, and responding creatively to quotidian events. Art seen through these lenses and practiced by the brush of lived-experience is particularly pertinent to the volatility of the urban enviroment, an environment that by its nature and on general principle is marked by social upheaval, economic transcience and political unease.
The Middle East is, to put it mildly, an interesting place, constantly in the air-waves, eliciting curiosity, response and offering spectacular ground for artistic commentary and intervention.
Artist, archivist, videographer, and author of several publications, including Big Subway Archive - an interactive photographic anthology of graffiti found predominantly in the subways of New York City - Henry Chalfant will deliver expert insight into the history of graffiti and street art, and their powerful nature as an effective form of communication and political artistic expression.
Politically-engaged artist Ganzeer, Alwan’s 2014-15 Artist in Residence, who has been an active participant in events in Egypt over the last few years and is embroiled in a conflict with the authority of the military coup, will reflect on his engagement and provide a presentation of samples of his work. This conversation with Henry Chalfant launches his residency at Alwan and provides an opportunity for contemplating the larger implications of cultural productions, their relevance to a world that is restless, saturated with crises and brewing with simmering conflict, but also hope.