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Latest in Culture


A dogged Aussie collective lands at the Oscars

The Australian filmmaking collective Blue-Tongue Films has been around since 1996, when a handful of friends made a short that turned out good enough to warrant persistence. Next Sunday, they’ll enjoy a moment in movies’ biggest spotlight: the Academy Awards. Among the nominees of Hollywood veterans and glamorous movie stars is Jacki Weaver, whose supporting …

DNE

Star Belgium artist’s home-coming smeared by ‘vile’ politics

Luc Tuymans, the star Belgian artist known for works on the Holocaust, 9/11 and his nation’s dark colonial legacy, this week brings his life’s work home — to an almost equally "hallucinatory" political trauma. "The situation in Belgium is vile, I have no idea what will happen," the 53-year-old painter viewed as one of Europe’s …

DNE

‘King’s Speech’ v ‘Network’ in Oscars home straight

British historical drama "The King’s Speech" enters the home straight as frontrunner to take the Oscars crown this week, but "The Social Network" is poking all its friends for last-minute help. Colin Firth, who plays a stammering George VI, is considered all but unbeatable for the best actor Oscar next Sunday, when the multi-billion dollar …

DNE

Al-Aswany on the state of Egypt

By Sarah P. Blakemore Novelist and columnist Alaa Al-Aswany launched the English translation of “On the State of Egypt” in an event attended by an eager crowd of journalists and fans at the recently re-opened AUC Bookstore in downtown Cairo on Sunday. His work was completed last year, long before the events in Tahrir Square took …

DNE

Egyptian Museum reopens to intrepid tourists

CAIRO: Dozens of foreign tourists braved the revolution in Egypt on Sunday to visit the world’s greatest collection of Pharaonic treasures and were welcomed with roses, as craftsmen meticulously mended artifacts damaged by looting. The usually busy galleries of the Egyptian Museum, which houses the golden death mask of boy king Tutankhamun, were virtually deserted …

DNE

In Qatar, Arab modern art gets its first museum

Paintings acquired by shadowy anonymous buyers paying record prices now hang in the light of day in Qatar in the world’s first museum devoted to modern Arab art. The masterpieces are displayed among other treasures making a collection of almost 6,500 pieces in Mathaf (museum in Arabic), which has gathered works of Arab modern art …

DNE

Risky Austrian Nazi comedy applauded at Berlin fest

An Austrian "Nazi satire" about a Jewish art dealer who dons the uniform of an SS officer to save himself and his mother from the Holocaust was surprisingly well-received Wednesday at the Berlin film festival. "My Best Enemy" stars one of Germany’s most popular actors, Moritz Bleibtreu, in a comedy that takes daring risks with …

DNE

An art revolution born in Tahrir Square

By Heba Fahmy Tahrir Square has not only witnessed the emancipation of hundreds of thousands of Egyptians who found their voice for the first time in 30 years, it gave birth to various art forms that mirrored the endless possibilities generated by the Jan. 25 revolution. Creativity flooded through Tahrir’s corners giving thousands of people …

DNE

Memories of Tahrir

By Heba El-Sherif Throughout 18 days, Tahrir Square in central Cairo gradually became a city on its own. Protesters camped there lived in tents side by side, eliminating religious and class barriers. Vibrant with cultural activities, the Square became an iconic landmark, not only because of the revolution, but for the friendships and memories people …

DNE

Egyptian mummy’s big toe oldest known prosthesis

PARIS: A superbly preserved artificial big toe found strapped to the mummified remains of an Egyptian woman is the oldest functional prosthesis ever found, experts said Monday. Discovered in 2000 near Luxor in the necropolis of Thebes, the wood-and-leather device belonged to Tabaketenmut, a high priest’s daughter who lived between 950 and 710 BC. That …

DNE

Egypt recovers some looted artifacts

CAIRO: Cairo authorities said on Monday they had recovered a pharaonic heart scarab and a tiny statuette, two of several ancient treasures looted from the world-famous Egyptian Museum during the country’s uprising. "The search operation that is being carried out inside and outside the museum for the lost artifacts has succeeded in recovering some of …

DNE

Egypt’s chief archaeologist says mummies are safe

LONDON: None of the mummies in Cairo’s main archaeological museum were damaged during a break-in last week but 70 other exhibits will need restoration, top Egyptian archaeologist Zahi Hawass said on Sunday. Media reports during Egypt’s political unrest had quoted Hawass as saying that looters damaged two mummies, but in a BBC interview on Sunday …

DNE

Cairo according to Mohamed Abla

By Mariam Hamdy With 50 successful solo shows and numerous awards under his belt, Mohamed Abla has established himself as one of Egypt’s most prominent contemporary artists. And while fame and fortunate usually go to the artist’s head, Abla remains as humble as ever; a man who simply cannot survive without painting. A cheerfully candid …

DNE

PIONEERS: Essmat Barakat: Unsung consummate artist of photography

You’ve probably seen his work many time in different venues across Egypt, but didn’t know who he was. His signature photographs hang royally in ministries, banks, airports and classrooms. Staring at the portrait of former president Anwar Sadat, dressed in full military regalia and looking straight into the eyes of the viewer, inspired me to …

DNE

One on One with Masoud Amralla Al Ali: Part 2

By Joseph Fahim The mastermind behind the Dubai International Film Festival (DIFF) is artistic director Masoud Amralla Al Ali. Mostly known for being the patron of young Arab filmmakers, the incredibly modest Al Ali is possibly the most accessible director of any festival anywhere in the world. Accompanied by no entourage whatsoever, you can always …

DNE

Cairo International Book Fair to honor China, Naguib Mahfouz

The Cairo International Book Fair (CIBF) is set to open Saturday, Jan. 29, with a packed schedule of events in honor of China and the centenary of the late Nobel laureate Egyptian author Naguib Mahfouz.   Originally scheduled to begin on Wednesday, the opening of the 43rd CIBF was delayed by three days. The agenda, …

DNE

One on One with Masoud Amralla Al Ali: Part 1

By Joseph Fahim Film is a business largely defined by giant egos, unrealistic ambitions and breakneck rivalry. Art, passion and real dedication occasionally take a backseat to a host of other commercial and strategic considerations. This reality is especially palpable in the Arab world where competition has grown sterner over the past few years with …

DNE

Astronomers claim earliest galaxy yet from Hubble

WASHINGTON: An international team of astronomers say they’ve glimpsed the earliest galaxy yet, a smudge of light from nearly 13.2 billion years ago — a time when the cosmos was a far lonelier place. The research hasn’t been confirmed, and some astronomers are skeptical. The new findings are based on an image from the Hubble …

DNE

‘The King’s Speech’ receives 12 Oscar nominations

The British monarchy saga "The King’s Speech" leads the Academy Awards with 12 nominations, including best picture and acting honors for Colin Firth, Helena Bonham Carter and Geoffrey Rush. Also nominated for best picture Tuesday were the psychosexual thriller "Black Swan;” the boxing drama "The Fighter;” the sci-fi blockbuster "Inception;” the lesbian-family tale "The Kids …

DNE

German foundation refuses to return Nefertiti bust

BERLIN/CAIRO: A German foundation rejected on Monday an Egyptian request to return the 3,400-year-old bust of Queen Nefertiti, a sculpture which draws over one million viewers annually to a Berlin museum. Egypt’s Supreme Council of Antiquities (SCA) sent the request to the Prussian Cultural Heritage Foundation, which runs the Neues Museum in the German capital …

DNE

Cairo talent perform for a cause

Three hours, six performances, 18 musicians, 20-something songs and a packed concert space; this was the breakdown of “Performance for a Cause,” which took place in downtown Cairo’s Rawabet Theater, Jan. 21. A diverse yet jovial group of concert-goers filtered into the space and settled into seats, against the walls and on the floors in …

DNE

Egypt asks Berlin to return Nefertiti bust

CAIRO: Egypt is officially requesting the return of the 3,300-year-old bust of Queen Nefertiti that has been in a Berlin museum for decades. The bust of the monarch, dating back to the 14 century BC, tops Egypt’s “wish list” of artifacts the country hopes to bring back as part of a campaign to retrieve thousands …

DNE

Farewell Heavens: Coming face-to-face with oneself

“God had always been my refuge from refuge. I fled from Him to Him. Both my pretensions to faith and my attempts to reject, it didn’t help me. I could be neither a believer nor an atheist. I couldn’t give God up because I never found a substitute. So I preferred God’s eternal silence to …

DNE

‘Man on Wire’ director takes chimp film to Sundance

Two years after taking home an Oscar for the tightrope documentary "Man on Wire," British director James Marsh has come to Sundance with a heartbreaking tale about a chimp raised to be human. "Project Nim" tells the story of a 1970s US experiment in which a chimpanzee was raised as a human child and taught …

DNE

Cairo’s hottest new art hub opens at Designopolis

For the past few weeks, Designopolis, Cairo’s larger than life art and design complex, has been witnessing the steady preparations for the inauguration of its latest art gallery, Tache, due to open Saturday, January 22. ‘Tache’ is an acronym using the first few letters of both the founders’ names: Taya El Zayadi and Cherine Badrawy. …

DNE

Jessica Winegar on Egypt’s booming contemporary art scene

In an interview with Daily News Egypt, Dr Jessica Winegar, author of “Creative Reckonings: The Politics of Art and Culture in Contemporary Egypt” and professor at Northwestern University, reflected on the groundbreaking change Cairo’s contemporary art scene has undergone in the past two decades. Winegar discussed the blossoming of Egypt’s contemporary art scene against a …

DNE

Writing art history: Collector and collection star in new book

Mona Abaza has given the Egyptian art scene a great addition with her second book "Twentieth Century Egyptian Art: The Private Collection of Sherwet Shafei." As a young journalist curious about Egyptian art, it was Sherwet Shafei who guided me across what was hitherto unknown. Little did I know that Shafei had played a similar …

DNE

PIONEERS: Saad El-Khadem and Effat Nagy Museum: Recharge your inspiration

In of the busiest parts of Sarrayat El-Kobba lies the Museum of Saad El-Khadem and Effat Nagy, just around the corner from the underground station by the same name. Yet the place somehow still retains the peace and serenity of bygone days. The energy of two of the most influential artists of the 40s and …

DNE

Local interior designers take divergent approaches to art

In a city where taste is contagious, the relationship between art and interior design is fraught with issues of authenticity, originality and, most importantly for the designers themselves, harmony. Local interior designers are both aestheticians and educators: A lack of knowledge about interior design and all of its components means that clients overseeing the decoration …

Daily News Egypt

Sundance opens with cross-section of fest’s films

All eyes at the Sundance Film Festival used to be glued to one big premiere that would have opening night all to itself. Now the festival starts with enough choices to fill a small multiplex. Robert Redford’s independent-film showcase kicked off Thursday night with two fictional tales, two documentaries and a collection of short movies, …

DNE