The Cairo Laboratory for Urban Studies and Environmental Research (CLUSTER) has been exploring the network of Cairo’s downtown passages for almost three years. as CLUSTER co-founder Omar Nagati explains that they see the passageways as an `in-between` space that allows for unique possibilities for the development and revitalization of the city center. Their interest also stems from hopes to engage the public more with existing arts and culture spaces, as curator and CLUSTER co-founder Beth Stryker tells Medrar.TV.
For a pilot phase, supported by the Center for Culture and Development (CKU) and the Danish Egyptian Dialogue Institute (DEDI), CLUSTER invited a group of Egyptian and Danish artists and architects to submit re-design proposals for two passageways, connecting Adly and Abdel Khaleq Tharwat Streets: The Kodak and Philips passageways. The group which took part in a three-day design workshop in April 2014 were: Kenneth Balfelt, Yasmin Elayat, Jakob Fenger (Superflex), Anne Marie Galmstrup, Bianca M. Hermansen, Adham Selim, Aya Tarek, Ahmed Zaazaa and Manar Moursi. A jury selected the Green Oasis and Light Oasis proposals for implementation at the Kodak and Philips passages, respectively.
We visited the passageways on the opening night and spoke to Nagati and Stryker about the project`s vision and negotiations they fostered with various stakeholders, and to architects Ahmed Zaazaa and Manar Moursi and artist Aya Tarek about their approach to the redesign and various concerns.
The interviews are in Arabic and have English subtitles.
[This video was produced by Medrar TV and is featured in partnership with Jadaliyya Culture]