Catalogue published with the Solo Exhibition of Egyptian Artist Guirguis Lotfy, at ArtTalks from April-May 2013.
If Salah Jahin played a pivotal role in the development of Egyptian colloquial poetry with an innate nationalistic flair, Alexandria-based visual artist Guirguis Lotfy is probably the only painter in Egypt whose oeuvre constitutes what he and each one of us can identify as our Egypt. In fact, Lotfy is probably the only Egyptian painter who has a work depicting each and every single Egyptian feast, celebration, ritual and tradition – be it Pharaonic, Islamic or Coptic. Describing his artistic process as literally looking out his window and painting what he sees, Lotfy has shown an indefatigable commitment to his country by bringing forth its homogenous character.
Guirguis Lotfy produces stunning depictions of contemporary daily Egyptian life using long forgotten elaborate and rich painting techniques. He resuscitates ancient painting techniques used from the first to the fourth century, such as egg tempera, and ensures the transmission of this unique art to future generations. Lotfy masters this elaborate method to depict two-dimensional set of ‘local’ characters and iconography within extremely dense canvas, accurately transmitting the congested Egyptian experience of today.
Born, works and Lives in Alexandria. Holds a BFA (1980), an MFA (1986) and a PhD (1991). A student of Pioneer Modern Artists Hamed Nada and Hamed Owais. Guirguis LotfY is a true gem within the Contemporary Egyptian Art Scene. He is a scholar, holding a PhD on the “Philosophy of Art” with a thesis focused on “Coptic Art and Its Effect on Modern Art”. His extensive studies have had a major impact on his work, providing Lotfi with an immediately recognizable style and a unique, unparalleled technique, reminiscent of religious iconography, making his works true masterpieces.
If Salah Jahin (1930-1986) played a pivotal role in the development of Egyptian colloquial poetry with an innate nationalistic flair, Alexandria-based painter Guirguis Lotfy invented colloquial Egyptian visual arts. Tirelessly, Lotfy depicts our feasts, celebrations, rituals and traditions that were or still are part of our cultural fabric. Pharaonic, Islamic or Coptic, Lotfy offers a personal rendering of those little moments of bonding and shared history, of some trivial mundane scenes with simple ordinary people.