Modern Art in Egypt: Identity and Independence, 1850-1936
Fatenn Mostafa Kanafani
Following a spectacular surge in interest for Egyptian masters, Modern Art in Egypt fills the void in Egyptian art history, chronicling the lives and legacies of six pioneering artists working under the British occupation.
Using Western-style academic art as a starting point, these artists championed cultural progress, re-appropriating Egyptian visual culture from European orientalists to found a neo-Pharaonic School of Realism. Modern Art in Egypt charts the years from Muhammad Ali's educational reforms to the mass influx of foreigners during the nineteenth-century.
With a focus on the al-Nahda thought movement, this book provides an overview of the key policy-makers, reformists and feminists who founded the first School of Fine Arts in Egypt, as well as cultural salons, museums and arts collectives. By combining political and aesthetic histories, Fatenn Mostafa breaks the prevailing understanding that has preferred to see non-Western art as derivatives of Western art movements. Modern Art in Egypt re-establishes Egypt's presence within the global Modernist canon.