Thursday,25 April, 2019
Current issue | Issue 1388, (5 - 11 April 2018)
Thursday,25 April, 2019
Issue 1388, (5 - 11 April 2018)

Ahram Weekly

Generations of Art

Youssef Kamel
Youssef Kamel

“Generations of Art” is a group exhibition of painting on show at the Cordoba gallery showing masterpieces by late and contemporary masters including the late Youssef Kamel

Kamel (1891-1971) was born in the neighbourhood of Al-Dahir in Cairo. In 1908, he was among the first students to join the School of Fine Arts together with such pioneers as Mahmoud Mokhtar, Ragheb Ayad, Antoine Haggar and Mohamed Hassan. Kamel studied in the painting section under the supervision of Italian painter Paolo Forcella. He graduated in 1911, and in the same year participated in the first exhibition of the students of the School of Fine Arts held at the Automobile Club in Cairo. In 1912, he was appointed an art teacher at a secondary school.

In 1925, Kamel received a scholarship to pursue his studies at the Academy of Fine Arts in Rome. He shared a studio with Ragheb Ayad and Mohamed Hassan and studied under Umberto Coromaldi.

During that period, he copied several of the masterpieces in the collection of the Villa Borghese and painted a series of Italian townscape views, featuring Roman antiques and Renaissance monuments, a genre he would later transpose to medieval Cairo. Kamel remained faithful to the teachings of his two Italian masters who introduced him to oil painting and the genres of landscape, nudes and portraits, which Kamel adapted to Egyptian subjects.

His work expresses a sense of peacefulness and a timeless nostalgia through the use of light strokes and soft colours. Kamel also portrayed individuals from the countryside and the working-class neighbourhoods of Cairo.

His works are among the acquisitions of the Museum of Modern Egyptian Art, the Agricultural Museum and the Arab Museum of Modern Art in Doha.

The exhibition is on until 30 April.

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