Cairo meets Cleveland

This March Art House welcomes, Huda Lutfi, a visual artist from Cairo, Egypt. Ms. Lutfi will be joining us through the Cleveland Foundation ’s, Creative Fusion program! Creative Fusion is a residency program that offers Cleveland communities opportunities to work with, and learn from, international artists. Each visiting artist is nominated by a panel of international arts experts, then selected and hosted by local cultural institutions, which provide studio space and materials for the artist’s work. In addition, host institutions collaborate with other community partners to provide opportunities for creative exchange. We are excited to be participating in this program for the third time!

Huda Lutfi is a visual artist and cultural historian living and working in Cairo. She has been teaching Arab Muslim cultural history as well as mixed media art at the American University in Cairo. Lutfi also held several art workshops for street and Sudanese refugee children and curated several exhibitions of their works.
Her training as a cultural historian has influenced her work as a visual artist, juxtaposing historical past and present, as well as traversing and fusing cultural boundaries. In her works she references Egypt’s cultural and popular artistic traditions, trying to integrate these into contemporary art practices. In her attempts to do so, she works with mixed media, using painting, text, collage, recycled photographs, found objects, assemblage, and installation. In one of her earlier projects, Lutfi used the medium of the found object to depict images of the city in which she lives. In another project, she worked with the medium of the doll, referencing the popular and rich popular tradition of doll making in Egypt and elsewhere, evoking issues of cultural politics and gender identity. In her latest projects in 2008 and 2009 Lutfi focused on body politics, attempting to show how prescribed gender roles impose restrictions on the human body.

In her most recent exhibition “Cut and Paste,” Lutfi presents a psycho-geographic archive of emotions, gestures, figures of speech and images that circulated in public space during Egypt’s transitional period. All new work produced over the past two years, these collages, found objects and sculptures combine to create one impressionistic story of the recent past.

In her works Lutfi addresses issues of cultural and gender representations, as well as issues of violence and globalization. She has exhibited both locally and internationally: in Cairo, Alexandria, Paris, London, Liege, Thessalonica, Marseille, Frankfurt, Bonn, Bamako, Virginia (USA), Bahrain, as well as Dubai.


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