With highly-coloured, irresistible stenciled images of the artist Chant Avedissian stencils, and a careful retrospective of the images, with descriptions. Excellent quality.
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Avedissian, Chant / Edited: Rose Issa
144 pp, full color excellent quality
Saqi Books, London, 2006
21 x 21 cm
Art - stenciled images
In his highly-coloured, irresistible stenciled images, Egyptian-Armenian artist Chant Avedissian - who refined his techniques in Western art schools and whose inspiration is fueled by the pantheon of Egypt's modern political/cultural Golden Age - deftly explores the boundaries between 'high' and 'low' art; politics and pop; the ephemeral and the enduring; and Egypt and the rest of the world.
As Rose Issa's careful retrospective of the artist shows, Avedissian's subject is, in fact, images themselves - mostly appropriated from the covers of Egyptian magazines from an era, situated roughly between King Farouk's early days and President Nasser's death, when that country was the most determined among all the Arab states in pursuing the ideal of modernity. The brightly burning stars who blaze once again in Avedissian's canvases include legendary singers Om Kulthoum and Asmahan' screen sirens Shadia and Hind Rostom' heart-throbs Farid al-Atrash and Abdel Halim Hafez; and once-adored statesmen like Gamal Abdel Nasser.
Avedissian's voracious appetite for glimpses of these bygone days, and his unerring synthesis of the themes and iconography of Egypt and the Arab world in the 1950's and 1960's, also takes in mothers, sportsmen and women, soldiers, films, hieroglyphics, rural life and advertising.