I WISH TO BE - a painting from Hend's new collection

I WISH TO BE – a painting from Hend’s new collection

The last time I met and did a blog on Hend Al Falafly, a crazy thing happened. Someone actually thought the lady in one of her paintings was me and sent me a text saying I should cover my aura – the image I had used was not vulgar at all. What I liked about it was the element of sensuality that oozes from Hend’s work relating to women but I guess the guy was not familiar about subtly or that art is art and I certainly do not look like the kind of chick who has the patience to pose for a painting.

Earlier tonight (Well yesterday actually as it is 1am in the morning), Hend opened a new exhibition at Art Sawa. Hend was born in Cairo in 1979 and lives and works in Cairo too. I met her during her last visit and cant wait to see her new art collection sometime this week.

Meanwhile, the good people at Art Sawa give you a sneak peek about her in the Qs and As below:

Questions and Answers (interview):

How were you first exposed to art?(Through family, school, etc.)

During my childhood, my father who was an architect was drawing his architectural designs by using colors and I got influenced just watching him till I went to school. Thanks to his direct influence, my drawings become distinctive from the rest of the class. Later on and always encouraged by him, I have several times participated in painting competitions and I proudly got  always the first place over the years of study at the school first and college later.

Tell us about your educational Background, as well as your personal background (Where were you born, grew Up, lived etc.)

I was born in Cairo, and grew up in a district known for a luxurious one and rich for archeological sites .I was surrounded by a great civilization and totally influenced by its esthetics

What was your first exhibition and where?

I was 17 when I began studying art at the Faculty of Fine Arts  & in year 97, I participated for the first time at the students exhibition I was very excited to show my work in my first  group exhibition to finally  receive the feedback by the  critics and the audience.

Well received, it was the starter for many other collective shows till I got my first solo exhibition “in Cairo” in 2004, at Biskuah Hall.

What is the inspiration behind you r Work?

The common and daily life firstly inspired me, leading me to focus of the women, their situation and its expression through the body language.

What are the messages you convey through your art?

My main message is themed around the woman condition in my society using the body language, the reflection of the said and non-said depicted in a very realistic expression.

Tell us about this show.. SEVEN SINS?

In this body of works, the seven sins, the idea is to highlight human conscience and to define to my own thoughts about the human characteristics and their actions and reactions as well. I found, indeed, in the thematic “the seven sins ³a fertile material for my own creativity and the representation of the human nature & body.

How did you select the works for this exhibition?

I thought a lot about all of the attributes of the seven sins and made several sketches to the artworks after some research in the how prior have envisioned them I finally addressed my own vision in this series of works.

When you choose works for a show in Dubai, are they different from works for the shows in another country? Different than for shows elsewhere?

Not really but I have to say that each body of works is a challenge to myself for a deep exploration of an idea or a concept that I would like to translate to another level of thinking.

As you appropriate icons from local, regional, and international contexts. Do you envision these having different meanings/messages in each context?

I, for sure, believe in the meaning of the ideas and thoughts from are different in each culture, and I realize that their perceptions can be received differently.

How does you envision you future of art on? If so how will it be accomplished?

I realize that each artist’s present and future depends on his/her political, social and cultural surroundings and they are be truly effective on the artist expression.


With Hend Falafly in Dubai during her last visit

With Hend Falafly in Dubai during her last visit

Senses and Sensibilities


Hend Al Falafly’s pencil and acrylic on canvas

Last week I found my yoga, zumba & Muay Thai classes missing on schedule an entire evening – not wanting to do anything in the gym that was not musically oriented, I set out art gallery hopping so my creative side gets a dose of eye candy (not male related for once).

The most delightful exhibition, being a super sensuous chick that I am was Hend El Falafly’s exhibition at Art Sawa. Hend, an Egyptian who lives and works in Cairo was sweetness and light personified and it was my luck that she was at the gallery at the time of my visit.

Over some nuts and dried apricots with fruit cocktails, we got chatting and it was interesting to marry her persona to the paintings I was so overwhelmed by on the walls.

Hend explains that realism at times worries her and she wants to express that through her work. Being inquisitive, I dig deeper and it is clear that her work has a symbolic and very expressive meaning behind it. Being a woman and despite my tomboy tendencies, I was moved by each of her sexily sensuous pieces.

Hend explores through her intimate works in ”Senses and Sensibilities” the different emotions expressed by women, usually which are part of her everyday life. She uses body language to understand the meaningful silence carried over by their experiences and stories. These are reflected in all its semantic in the facial expressions and movements of the hands, the feet, the look ,the clothes and emotions repressed.

And with the silence of the lips, it is usually the eyes which transcends all the languages and spoken in a glance, an unspeakable tongue that denies lies and hypocrisies. I agree with this fully as I’m always told that no matter what I am thinking or feeling, my eyes always betray what I really feel and are the windows to my soul….its not always a good thing but over the years I’ve learnt that my eyes betray me and if it reflects sadness at any time, I end up crying because I know the person across me knows I’m hurting….its not nice for the other person but hey….I’m a woman and I can do what I feel like.

Hend tells me that an array of different areas of reality inspires her and have great impact on her works, which is revealed through incredible movement and light. No secret can be kept hidden……if you want to see her amazing work for yourself, its at DIFC Art Sawa until 19th June. Enjoy!

With artist Hend El Falafly