Egypt reiterates rejection of linking terrorism acts with Islam    Players are losing the joy of playing: Man City boss Guardiola    Zidane laments Real Madrid's awful start, lack of consistency    Turkey's new virus figures confirm experts' worst fears    Six explosions in Eritrean capital Asmara, says US State Department    Real Madrid's struggles continue with 2-1 loss to Alaves    France's AFD, NBE sign €100 million credit facility agreement    Savills: Boom in global vaccine investment to benefit real estate investors in Middle East    Egypt's exported 4.8 mln tonnes of agriculture products in 11M: Minister    Ethiopian forces will take Tigrayan capital in coming days, military says    Experts: Virus numbers could be erratic after Thanksgiving    Italy loosens COVID restrictions in five regions, including Lombardy    Egypt's Sisi inspects road projects under construction in Cairo    Ethiopia to generate power from GERD in June 2021, says Ethiopian Minister    Cairo, Alexandria, Gharbiya and Luxor record highest coronavirus infection rates, minister    2021 Grammy Awards: List of nominees in top categories    Egypt's interior ministry takes legal action against 5,226 drivers, 483 shops for violating COVID-19 preventive measures    Sisi calls on citizens to closely observe COVID-19 preventive measures    UAE's ADGM to sign MOU with Israel's securities authority on fintech    Akhenaten performance at the Cairo Opera House is a must go    An advisory chamber    GERD: A point of order?    Leapfrogging the transport network    Cairo International Book Fair suspended for five months over coronavirus concerns    AstraZeneca novel COVID-19 vaccine can be 90% effective, results show    US will reduce number of its troop in Iraq, Afghanistan    Asia forms world's biggest trade bloc, a China-backed group excluding U.S    Egypt unveils largest archaeological discovery in 2020 with over 100 intact sarcophagi    Palestinians mourn the loss their longtime spokesman, Saeb Erekat    Trump says won't blame Egypt for being ‘upset' over GERD dispute with Ethiopia    1st stage of Egypt's parliamentary elections kicks off on Saturday    Global Finance: Egypt's Tarek Amer among the world's top 20 central bank governors    Legend footballer Lionel Messi says he is forced to stay with Barcelona    Egypt, Ethiopia, Sudan to resume Nile dam talks today    Iraqi conglomerate eyes developing land that housed Mubarak-era ruling party HQ    Legend Messi officially wants to leave Barcelona, hands transfer request    The Facebook Preacher's Search for Fame, and Egypt's Economy    Egypt calls on UNSC to address oil spill risks off Yemen coast    Egypt economically strong in face of COVID-19, reforms ongoing: International Cooperation Minister    Arafa Holding reports $144,000 COVID-19-related losses in April    Egypt's efforts in Libya to activate free will of Libyan people: Al-Sisi    Hyksos campaigns were internal takeover, not foreign invaders: study    COVID-19 affects Egypt sporting clubs    COVID-19 will soon turn to seasonal like swine flu: Presidential Health Advisor    ‘Egypt's Support' coalition convenes to discuss its Senate election list    Robbery attempt leads to discovery of Ptolemaic monuments in Qena    Flouting international guidance, Ethiopia unilaterally starts filling its Nile dam    Zaha speaks out after online racial abuse    







Thank you for reporting!
This image will be automatically disabled when it gets reported by several people.





Paper art: Past and present
Published in Daily News Egypt on 10 - 02 - 2010

It is the thinnest and the most beautiful. These words are used to describe the fiber extracted from the Ganpi shrub that is the primary raw material for making Washi, traditional Japanese handmade paper.
And the admirer is Kyoko Ibe, who has been working with the paper fiber for more than 30 years with the intention of using her artwork to "show people the power of fiber.
As we increasingly embrace electronic commerce and move towards a paperless economy, the functional aspects of paper have diminished. Mohamed Abouelnaga and the Japanese artist Kyoko Ibe present the aesthetic role of paper in the "Paper Tales exhibition currently on display at the Darb 1718 center.
Ibe has taken her work to five continents and is dedicated to going beyond the functional aspect of paper to illuminate this "symbolic part of Japanese culture.
"I like Egypt because of papyrus, says Ibe. Papyrus was used for writing until the Chinese invented the art of paper-making around 200 BC; and the Japanese embraced paper by using it for almost all purposes of living, including clothing. As children, most of us worked with Origami crafts to create beautiful shapes.
Ibe deals with paper as an artist, moving away from the traditional uses of paper and creating fine art pieces for museums, large-scale installations in public places and a wide range of interior products.
Of the work currently on exhibit at Darb, I particularly like the "inverted wave creation in white that adorns the interior of a hotel in Kyoto, Japan and is made of acrylic laminated Washi.
"I always think of my installations as a three-dimensional drawing in space. How to layout the elements in a space is exactly the same as how a painter draws lines or paints on a surface, explains Ibe.
Ibe corroborates with seventh generation traditional hand paper-makers in Japan to produce Washi. The process is done almost entirely by hand, without the use of chemicals, thereby minimizing environmental pollution. Ultimately the fiber that remains constitutes a mere 2 to 3 percent of the original raw material.
Japan has a longstanding tradition of recycling paper, with the earliest record of recycled paper dating to 901 AD. In fact, in the past, the Japanese Washi was so precious that no single sheet of paper was wasted and records were written on both sides. When the records were no longer needed, the paper was reused as layering material in the construction of traditional sliding doors and folding screens.
When Washi is recycled, traces of the ink applied to the original surface remain in the fibers even after immersion in water, as if it is trying to tell about its past. The current exhibition is aptly titled "Paper Tales as Ibe builds on this tradition of recycling.
Some of Ibe's artwork is made of recycled Ganpi paper dating back around 100 years. She embellishes her artwork with calligraphy cut from official documents and textbooks, written about 200 years ago, as well as mica particles. She also experiments with shredded office computer paper and newspaper.
Whereas Ibe is influenced by Washi's cultural past, Abouelnaga draws inspiration from the reflection of shop windows.
For Abouelnaga, "paper means culture, and not only technique.
He finds paper to be closest to nature. The artwork in his new series "Vetrina (literally shop window), combine different kinds of paper such as cotton, linen, papyrus and Washi. He says, "Mixing paper is like having a dialogue between different cultures.
Abouelnaga uses mixed techniques by printing photographs on paper and then working on them with different colors and materials.
On his travels to different parts of the world, Abouelnaga photographed shop windows, which he describes as reflecting the character and culture of a place, giving him insight into the socio-economic structure of a society. He blends these photographs with different kinds of paper and other materials to reflect his personal vision.
Aboulelnaga rues the fact that despite being the country that gave the world papyrus, there are not many exponents of paper art in Egypt.
Ibe talks about paper as if it is a living thing, and she says Washi is felt to be a living thing because of its flexible and accommodating nature.
Darb 1718, Kasr El-Shame' St., Al Fakhareen, Old Cairo. Tel: (02) 2361 0511.


Clic here to read the story from its source.