In its 6th edition in Cairo, San3a Tech in collaboration with the American Center organized Maker Faire to gather makers from all fields and backgrounds. It is an international event that celebrates the art of making. Makers get to exhibit their work in arts, crafts, science and engineering. It is a great opportunity for experimenting new projects and keeping up with the latest technologies. Moreover, the event holds several on site workshops and activities for kids and adults to get to try new skills. This is in addition to the talks and panel discussions by professionals and artists.
The Bastet sculpture by Ibrahim Salah
One enormous sculpture has surely caught visitors’ attention at Maker Faire event. It is the sculpture of Bastet, the pharaonic Goddess of love, fertility and pleasure. The sculpture is 6 meters high and weighs around 400 kg. Interestingly, the Egyptian artist Ibrahim Salah (27 years old) worked on this sculpture using 3000 circular scrap pieces. It took him only one month to complete it.
“The idea of recycling is not very familiar to Egyptians” Ibrahim said. “I have always been into recycling and using waste to turn in it into something totally different. After working for 5 years in sculpting, I wanted to develop my skills and do more. That’s when I searched about the art of recyclables and started practicing with old pieces. Then I decided to make a special sculpture that speaks of our Egyptian culture.”
The Art of Miniatures
The Art and craft zone gathered many artists. Among them were miniature artists under the name of “Egyptian Scale Modelling club”. It is a Facebook group gathering everyone who’s interested in miniature making. Uniquely the artists focus on recreating special Egyptian features. Pieces are mostly made out of foam, wood and clay.
Comic art with Nasser Junior
From a distance you can easily spot Mohammed Nasser’s comic artwork. “Nasser Junior”, as we know him on social media, gained his popularity from his amazingly relatable comics on social media platforms. People love his smart sense of humor that expresses different everyday situations.
“When I work, I tend to follow my heart and do what I really love. Currently, I am working on a pretty interesting project. It’s a comic series with an Egyptian researcher at the University of London. Mainly the project aims for raising awareness on our Egyptian monuments abroad. It is using comics as a direct easy way of communication. I am so happy to be part of such an inspiring project.”
When we asked him about future projects he’ll be up to, Nasser expressed his desire to work on a graphic novel. “I want to work on something that will be totally different from what I post online. I am more into expressing one adventure through a graphic novel”, Nasser said.
“The Recyclers” is a startup working on up cycling wastes. Mainly they work on enhancing the quality of unused items by transforming them into new ecofriendly products with special qualities. Mostafa Mahmoud, founder of The Recyclers, got inspired to start this project when he attended Maker Faire event three years ago. That’s when he decided to turn his passion to work and help creating beautiful stuff out of trash. “The Recyclers” mainly use old tires, glass bottles and wood wastes. Depending on the state of the trash item they design to make maximum use out of it.
“The Recyclers” exhibited innovative products like chairs, closets and home decorations. Moreover, they are encouraging people to give them their unused trash. This is instead of the usual long process these items take before it finally gets to be upcycled.
Art of Nature
Gladly there were more Eco friendly products at Maker Faire like those from “Art of Nature”. Founded by Mohammed Abdelrahman, Art of Nature is about the creative reuse of tree wastes. Since 2018, Abdelrahman has been collecting wood wastes from trees and turning them into beautiful pieces. His work includes plant pots, decorative frames, tables and even mini aquariums.
DIY talk by Assem Kamal
Among the inspiring talks was Asem Kamal’s about the art of DIY. Asem is a freelance stop motion artist who got strong passion towards making stuff. He graduated from the school of Fine Arts in 2017 and he is into carpentry and DIY. From simple banners and frames to mirrors, wardrobes and ceiling lamps, Asem believes in making whatever you need from the materials around you.
“We’re living in an era of mass production. It’s not always easy to find a product that completely fits your style and taste. That’s why I customize stuff that fits me. Just like this mirror that I made out of wood waste. As you can see it’s long enough for me to see my face, unlike other mirrors.”
About using tools in his artwork Asem said “I strongly believe in the quote that says do what you can with what you have. At the beginning I thought tools are the most important part in the process. By time and practice, I found out that I am the one in control and tools help me to produce whatever I got on mind.” You can watch Asem’s interesting videos of DIY here and get inspired.
“Shagarha” initiative by Omar Kamal
The event did not only focus on physical products. It also shed light on influential initiatives that can change the face of the city. Among these initiatives were “Shagarha” by Omar Kamal. Mainly it is aiming for planting fruitful trees in our streets and public spaces. Unlike common trees, fruitful ones can give us shade and provide the poor with fruits. Since 2016, this thoughtful initiative has attracted the many to volunteer and put on great effort. Hopefully this sustainable concept will spread more and then we can see more fruitful trees in our streets.