artist / participant

press release

Anna Boghiguian is an artist and writer, trained in visual art, music, economics and political science. Using drawing and painting, her work is influenced by the multidisciplinary experiments that investigate mutual relations between image and sound. In the late 1960s she composed musical pieces based on the sounds of the city and translated them into paintings. The artist is a constant traveller, and the speed of different cities is an important aspect of her work. A Poet on the Edges of History (Constantine. P. Kavafy) (2009) comprises drawings and watercolours that portray the life and work of the Greek poet Constantine P. Cavafy (1863-1933, Alexandria). Boghiguian does not merely ‘illustrate’ the poet’s life. She transposes his work using imagery created by reinterpreted leitmotifs from the Hellenist tradition (Mark Anthony, the myths of Dionysius and Adonis, topoi of nostalgia, homoerotic sensual pleasures and cityscapes of Alexandria). The narrative of the drawings seems to flow chronologically, but the mutely interwoven episodes (the house where the poet was born, his family, the myth of Dionysius, meeting with the poet Ahmed Shawqi, Alexandria, Mark Anthony) continuously merge fact and fiction, and shift between past, present and mythical time. As with Cavafy’s poetry, Boghiguian’s drawings take tradition as a starting point but break with its conformism and create it anew. They do so by looking into history to dismantle it and to turn its ‘factuality’ into poetry. (iksv, Antrepo No.3, 2009 )

Anna Boghiguian b. 1946 Cairo, studied economics and political science at the American University in Cairo and Fine Art under Fouad Kamel, Egypt, she also holds a BFA in visual arts and music from Concordia University, Montreal.

Selected exhibitions: Documenta 13 Kassel, Sharjah Bienniale, A Journey of Cavafy´s Alexandria, Museum of Islamic Art Athens, El Ele, with Cevdet Erek. Rodeo, Istanbul, 11th International İstanbul Biennial, In the Middle, Sfeir Semler Gallery, Beirut curated by Catherine David 1st Thessaloniki Biennale of Contemporary Art, Contemporary Arab Representations: CAIRO - Bildmuseet, Umeå Contemporary Arab Representations, Cairo - Witte de With Center for Contemporary Art, Rotterdam

Anna Boghiguian
A Poet on the Edges of History