Egypt x Beirut
Exhibition Dates: 5th – 27th August 2022
Private View : Thursday 4th August 2022, 18:00 - 20:00
P21 Gallery is proud to present Egypt x Beirut, a small selection of images taken across the mesmerising and ancient land of Egypt during the holy month of Ramadan in 2022, witnessing the humbling and beautiful practise of fasting in the Muslim world.
Ramadan in Egypt is unique, for she is dressed in jewels that are fairy lights, myriads of tiny flags and fringe garlands and kaleidoscopic fabrics everywhere - all coming together in a multi-sensory feast – for the eyes, with the divine smells of food against the buzzing backdrop of everyday symphony of cities – of course with Cairo, the queen of all.
There are two distinctive faces of Ramadan in Egypt, just like the Sun and Moon, they complement each other and merge in a seamless circle. During the day, the myriad of flags, fringes, and fabrics dance in divinity with the wind – perfectly mirroring the eternal motion of its people. During the night, the fairy lights come alive – highlighting public spaces for what they truly are: people’s palaces.
When the time of Iftar arrives, the whole country stops, prays, and comes together in unity to share food. It is beautiful, selfless, generous, humbling – we are one. We eat together – no matter where are you from, what is your religion – sharing food, smiles, kind words, and love.
In tandem, as the exhibition happens to open on August 4 – how can we not talk about the Beirut Blasts? We must never forget, and in solidarity the least the artist can do is talk about it.
On 4th August 2020, the artist was sitting on a plane flying above Turkey having not the slightest idea of what is happening in the city she was about to descend to. Approaching over the sea, the artist saw black billowing clouds of smoke from up above, huge swirling fumes. Then she saw the endless sea of shattered glass carpeting the streets, riding on glass-water in the taxi amongst the ghosts of buildings, skeletons with no more windows, no more doors. Just rubble everywhere – rubble which meant a lifetime collection of items, HOMES of people, who were now left with little to/and nothing in many cases. Shattered hearts, they were left with shattered hearts – she keeps seeing their shattered hearts.
Nikolett Puskas is an activist, who likes to do things, not only theorise on them. She believes in bottom-up, grassroots initiatives for social inclusion and real change, paving way to the right to the city and right for environmental justice. She has been working in the urban sphere since 2015.
She used to be an interior architect and designer, fashion designer and maker (clothing, bags, jewellery) – after growing disillusion with those fields, she left, searching for deeper meanings. As her journey unfolds, it is always accompanied by constant tinkering with photography, attempting to capture moments, feelings, ambiance – as a flâneur across the world and life. It gives her great pleasure to capture the indescribable – suspend time and space into mementos, which are often very personal. She sees people, places, things from multiple perspectives at once – there is so much to unpack in many of the photos she has taken. Her first photo exhibition took place at the British Museum in 2018, at the UK launch of the RELIEF Centre – a research project of which she was part of. The photos were a selection of Beiruti streetscapes to give a feeling to the audience coming to the launch conference of the sense of place.
Recently, she started to rediscover her skills in illustrating and graphic design, and she hopes to create space in the future where her creative aspirations can fully blossom – including her long-nurtured literary endeavours.
Artist: Nikolett Puskas
Curated and supported by: HUB Collective
For further exhibition information, press images and interview opportunities, please contact:
P21 Gallery: firstname.lastname@example.org, Tel. 020 7121 6190
Nikolett Puskas: email@example.com, Tel.: 077 1543 8967