Bruce Sterling on Sun, 20 Feb 2011 05:50:33 +0100 (CET)

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<nettime> Egyptian multimedia artist perishes in his revolution

*As far as I know, this guy wasn't on nettime, but given that bio and  
that set of interests, he sure could have been.

*This extraordinary year is only two months old.  I can remember when  
"tactical media" struggles were rather abstract matters for a virtual- 


"No one would argue how uniquely talented an artist, a teacher, a  
musician, and a revolutionary Bassiouny was. His talent propagated  
relentlessly in all directions. He was one of the most dedicated  
people to his gift and to his students. And on a personal level he was  
one of the kindest gentle and endearing people I have ever known. You  
might not be with us in person today but you will live in our hearts  
and minds forever. Rest in peace our beloved brother," El Noshokaty  
noted in a tribute.

"According to El Masry, his friend was one of the most important  
artists of the new generation of young contemporary Egyptian artists.  
“His practice varied greatly and evolved rapidly in a short amount of  
time in the past 10 years. His early large scale expressionistic  
paintings won him the first prize in painting in the 2001 Salon of  
Youth. Then his work took a turn towards a more experimental direction  
involving new media and multimedia installations between the years of  
2001 and 2005.”

Ahmed and colleagues in the newsroom

Bassiouny grew more interested in the study of digital interactive  
media and by that he became one of the very few people in the  
contemporary Egyptian art movement working in that field and this is  
due to the lack of any academic programs that teach this specific  
field of art in addition to the vast amount of mandatory software and  
hardware knowledge that accompanies the practice of interactive art.

He participated in the first Egyptian/Spanish interactive art  
workshop, then in the "Egypt Lab" workshops in cooperation with Medrar  
Contemporary Art Foundation in Egypt and the "Hangar foundation" for  
technological production in Barcelona 2008-2009. These workshops  
focused on multimedia interactivity through open source programs like  
pure data and the integration of external hardware circuitry like the  
Arduino electronic platform.

Bassiouny's last project was an interactive piece titled "ASCII  
doesn't speak Arabic" exhibited in the "Cairo Documenta" which is a  
big independent art show organized by a large group of young Egyptian  
contemporary artists in December 2010 for two weeks in one of the old  
hotels downtown.

As a creative musician, it was planned for him to perform in July 2011  
in one of the most prestigious digital music festivals in the world  
"SONIC" in Barcelona and this month has been dedicated completely to  
his music on commemorating his death and  
accrediting his unique talent....

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