SURPLUS! Housing from the Periphery
Photographs by Anthony Hamboussi
Curated by Mohamed Elshahed (Cairobserver)
Opening 18 October, 7pm
From the 1960s the discourse of “housing crisis” was normalized and it has been sustained ever since. The perpetuation of the image of an unsolvable housing shortage has provided reasoning for the excessive production of housing real estate in all sectors of the economy, formal and informal, from high-end developments to state-built “affordable” housing and piecemeal private investments.
SURPLUS! Is a selection of 18 photographs by Anthony Hamboussi curated from “Cairo Ring Road,” a larger project spanning four years composed of 180 photographs of urban and architectural landscapes. The large format images, captured in peripheral locations, depict the immense scale of excessive residential building activities, high density and often dystopian uninhabited landscapes of housing in contemporary Cairo. Rather than focus only on so-called ‘ashwaiyyat or the now-familiar desert gated communities, Hamboussi shifts the focus to a variety of housing typologies that occupy the liminal spaces at the city’s edges and presents them side by side to instigate a series of conversations about architectural forms, building economies, and photographic practices.
The exhibition is accompanied by two curated conversations along with a text by Mohamed Elshahed.
Conversation 1: October 21, 7pm
Anthony Hamboussi in conversation with Charlotte Malterre Barthes, Ahmed Zaazaa, and Nabil El Hady
This conversation will be about housing, and the urban conditions depicted in the photographs that inspired Hamboussi’s photographic survey.
Conversation 2: November 4, 7pm
Anthony Hamboussi in conversation with Beth Stryker, Rana El Nemr, and David Degner
This conversation will be about artistic engagement with Cairo’s urbanity, practices of photography and issues related to representation and reception.
Conversations will be moderated by Mohamed Elshahed and will take place in the first floor gallery