The A77A Project
On Presidents & Superheroes
'My art projects are made up of six important aspects: time, past and present, the superhero or model, the recycling process of contemporary visual images in their kinetic and static forms, and sacred valuesagainst the globalization consumerism. Today this combined formula creates an Egyptian hybrid identity I've seen in development during the last two decades of my creative work.'
In The A77A Project: On Presidents & Superheroes, Cairo-based artist Khaled Hafez investigates the figure of the superhero, a force for good which has existed in many forms - from Isis to Batman - throughout world history. The film probes the hybrid nature of Egyptian identity as it imagines the return of Anubis, a jackal-headed god associated with the after-life in ancient Egyptian religion. Anubis has being digitally reproduced here so as to inhabit the streets of contemporary Cairo. Looped like a rap song, and collapsing the distinction between historical periods, Anwar Nasser's 1967 resignation speech stands for the dream of pan-Arabism and the continuities and disjunctions that inhabit national histories.
The A77A Project: On Presidents & Superheroes consists of found 'telephone pictures' as well as images the artist shot himself on a mini compact camera. This imagery clearly raises the issue of authorship and of collective creation. The piece presents a vision of Cairo and Egypt which isn't solely created by Hafez but by the multitude who are posting to the internet photographs of their country as it is being reinvented.