The villas are naked concrete, baked in the sun like unpainted pottery. The swimming pool is a trough with light fixtures poking from the sides. There are no guests, many stray dogs, and one-full time member of staff—a watchman who spends much of his time tending a fruit orchard where mangoes, oranges and lemons grow.
If this were an isolated case, it would be mere misfortune. But the Seagull is just one ruin among dozens that line some 200 km of road on the southeastern Sinai coast. — Quartz
Amid Cairo's brick buildings and heaping piles of trash is a sprawling work of art, which, at first, looks messy and incoherent.
But when you stand on the nearby hillside and read the spray-painted Arabic "calligraffiti," as its creator Tunisian-French artist eL Seed calls it, the message reads loud and clear: "If one wants to see the light of the sun, he must wipe his eyes."
[...] in total secrecy from the Egyptian government due to the country's strict laws forbidding artistic expression. — techinsider.io
[Tarek] looks down at the glossy graphics, and then up again, before gesturing around at his neighbours. “Where are we in this picture?” he asks...
Norman Foster’s practice has chosen to partner with a government widely condemned by international human rights groups for its brutal crackdowns on dissent and widespread use of torture; in return, the company seems to believe it can carve out a place for itself in the vanguard of a progressive new era of urban design...
Is it right? — the Guardian
The [British] museum announced a six-month show that will tell the remarkable story of two lost cities at the mouth of the Nile – Thonis-Heracleion and Canopus – which by the 8th-century AD had been swallowed completely by the sea. [...]
the loans will range from the enormous, a 5.4-metre-high granite statue of the Nile flood god Hapi, to the domestic. [...]
It represents Egypt’s first major loan of antiquities since the country’s revolution in 2011... — theguardian.com
Cairo is an unruly urban sprawl that has spun out of control. Now, officials want to build a new capital in the desert -- a potent symbol of President Sisi's regime. But will it ever happen? [...]
The old Cairo is an ugly city, an affront to the senses. [...] a city of contradictions, created from the bottom up, even though that had never been the intention. It has been growing wildly since the 1960s -- from 3.5 million back then to 18 million now -- against the will of the country's rulers. — spiegel.de
Most Egyptians have always lived in the fertile stretch along the Nile, the nation’s breadbasket which accounts for less than 10 per cent of Egypt’s territory. But urban growth has become the chief threat to agricultural land as farmers haphazardly – and illegally – build new houses to make room for the next generation.
Construction surged even more amid a security vacuum that followed the 2011 popular uprising that ousted the country’s long-time autocrat, Hosni Mubarak. — thenational.ae
...last week at an economic development conference, the Egyptian government announced it was planning a giant new building project to the east of Cairo. The new city, which could eventually cover 700 km sq, doesn't currently have a name, and is being referred to simply as "The Capital"...If all goes to plan, the city will serve as the new administrative and financial capital of Egypt. — City Metric
Is this the promising future of Giza 2030? What is the status of Giza 2030 after the Egyptian Revolution in 2011? Would it be a curse or a blessing if I were from Giza? And my message to the current Egyptian regime is this: if this is the future of Egyptian cities, please leave the situation as it is. — thisbigcity.net
Egypt is in the throes of a severe housing shortage [...]. But one thing the country has an abundance of is lonesome desert, and developers are turning there to construct immense projects that stick out in the emptiness like skyscrapers on Mars.
London-based photographer Manuel Alvarez Diestro has a yen for the monumental [...] naturally he was interested in the colossal structures rising on the outskirts of Egyptian cities. — citylab.com
North Africa used to be a civilizational crossroads in which Muslims, Christians, and Jews not only lived alongside one another but also shared one another's language and culture. This mingled society, formed from many intense particularities, is what we call cosmopolitanism. It was born in the Middle East, and it now seems to be disappearing there, including from the one place where the cosmopolitan ideal reached its supreme realization: Alexandria. — Foreign Policy
As more journalists are being arrested in Egypt, artists are under threat as well. [...]
Political slogans and portraits of people who have died since the January 25 revolution are painted over by the government and replaced immediately by artists. The walls of Mohamed Mahmoud Street leading to Tahrir Square are layers of colorful murals over asymmetrical blotches of white paint. And despite its attempt to silence, the dictatorial white ironically makes a great primer for many of the artworks. — blog.vandalog.com
One of the largest plots in the square, in front of the Egyptian museum and Ritz Carlton hotel, has been fenced off for more than a decade by a company linked to former members of the regime. "My question is what is the intention of any urban intervention by the government or by a competition," said Nasser Rabbat, the Aga Khan professor of Islamic architecture at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology in Boston. "Is there a movement to make the square more controllable?" — thenational.ae
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