[ISEA2011] Panel: Dia Hamed – Open Lab Egypt (OLE)

Panel Statement

Panel: East & West                                                                                                                                Institutional Presentation

As ab­bre­vi­ated “OLE”, Open Lab Egypt is a long-term pro­ject meant to es­tab­lish a lab­o­ra­tory for the de­vel­op­ment of dig­i­tal arts in Egypt, pro­mot­ing the use of Open Source tools in au­dio­vi­sual cre­ation. It aims to raise a local com­mu­nity in Cairo of au­tonomous peo­ple that can start a sup­port for pro­duc­tion of in­ter­ac­tive en­vi­ron­ments and elec­tronic in­ter­faces in the fu­ture, using all the ac­ces­si­ble tech­nolo­gies that might be nec­es­sary. The pro­ject is in­tended for art stu­dents, artists, de­sign­ers, ed­u­ca­tors, en­gi­neers, and sci­en­tists con­tribut­ing to the de­vel­op­ment of cul­tural pro­duc­tion in local com­mu­ni­ties of the Ara­bic speak­ing re­gions.

Medrar for Con­tem­po­rary Art
“Medrar” is a non­profit or­ga­ni­za­tion that started run­ning ac­tiv­i­ties since 2005. It rep­re­sents a com­mon cul­tural cor­po­rate and phil­an­thropic plat­form for young emerg­ing artists in all means of com­mu­ni­ca­tion, de­vel­op­ing ex­pe­ri­ences and fi­nan­cial sup­port. Con­sid­er­ing the ne­ces­sity to doc­u­ment the on­go­ing Con­tem­po­rary praxis in Egypt and cri­tique based meth­ods, Medrar aims to drive the in­ter­est of emerg­ing artists with pro­vid­ing chances of ac­ces­sion and ex­per­i­men­ta­tion. We be­lieve we can stim­u­late the artis­tic scene in Egypt by fo­cus­ing on the or­ga­ni­za­tion of work­shops and fes­ti­vals that would en­cour­age par­tic­i­pa­tion of new faces, lo­cally and in­ter­na­tion­ally. As an artist run­ning based ini­tia­tive, we are al­ways seek­ing the up­com­ing po­ten­tials of cre­ativ­ity.

  • Dia Hamed was born in Cairo, stud­ied Art Ed­u­ca­tion in “Hel­wan Uni­ver­sity” and lives and works in Cairo as an artist. In­stead of being de­voted to a cer­tain dis­ci­pline, he kept ex­plor­ing through wide va­ri­ety of praxis like the­ater (per­form­ing, cre­ation and scenog­ra­phy), and then re­al­iz­ing cre­ation of his pro­jects within the con­text of Egypt­ian con­tem­po­rary art. Dur­ing stud­ies, he prac­ticed act­ing, danc­ing and per­cus­sion for the­ater in uni­ver­sity fes­ti­vals and other cul­tural events till 2006. Later on he took part with live per­for­mance art works in “Salon El Shabab” 17th  & 18th as well as Sabeel per­for­mance meet­ings in the Town­house gallery 2007/08, sub­se­quently redi­rected to ex­per­i­ment­ing in­ter­ac­tiv­ity in pub­lic spaces with his lat­est pro­jects “sit­u­a­tion-com­pli­ca­tion” & “Na­tive Tourists”. He co­founded Stu­dio Mo­roni the­ater group, Sabeel pro­ject and Medrar for con­tem­po­rary art in which he cur­rently work­ing as its pro­jects’ di­rec­tor, also with Berlin based Com­pany “Ri­m­ini Pro­tokol” for doc­u­men­tary the­ater pro­duc­tion as an as­sis­tant di­rec­tor.