This year Artellewa Art Space in Cairo is expanding its residency program to offer residences to artists from the Global South, an initiative towards South-South artistic collaboration. Between December 2009 and December 2010, residences are offered to artists from the Arab region, North Africa, and Turkey.
The residency takes place at one of the most populated areas in Cairo called “Ard El-Lewa” where Artellewa is located.
The artists reside in a “work and live” neighbourhood -where workers and artisans live and work-, and create their artworks based on their interaction with the local people in the neighbourhood. This is in fact one of the reasons behind establishing Artellewa: to stimulate the participation of the locals in artistic processes in order to build appreciation for the value of arts in daily life.
Invited artists can also volunteer to teach art to children, to enhance their creativity in a neighbourhood where no artistic activities are offered to them.
Sudanese artist Mutaz Emam, Mr. Emam had his residency in January-March 2010. The art work of Mr. Emam is a form of dialogue with the aesthetic objects, space, light, and the elements of nature and imagination. He uses the visual language as a basis for his aesthetic expression. Mr Emam lived and traveled to most of the Nile Basin countries and lives and works between Egypt and Sudan. He showed the results of his residency period at Artellewa on the exhibition called The River:
In his own words: "I try in this exhibition to document an eternal colorful artistic relation between the great river and its people, animals, environment, and culture. (...) a continuous dialogue on various topics within my larger project which is the celebration of the environment and to mobilize social support for it, and the resistance to climate change and the dangers resulting from it."