Born in El Badir (Egypt) in 1956, Shafik studied arts and art of the scene at the Fine Arts Academy in Milan, Egypt and in other countries.
Shafik was rewarded with the first prize in many art competitions including the Venice Biennale where he was given the Golden Lion Award in 1995.
Shafik’s work is strongly influenced by his Egyptian origins. The power of the Egyptian art and culture with its wonderful religious mythology, amazing figurative writing and astonishing architecture, together with the allure of the other great ancient culture which developed in the Mediterranean Sea are constantly evocated in his works.
Shafiks work is absolutely contemporary both for its techniques and concept. He uses natural supports and materials as wood, sand and juta to compose art close to abstraction.
Oeuvres de Medhat Shafik
With an ability to combine the suggestions and colours of Eastern art with the most advanced compositional and expressive techniques of the Western avant – gardes, Shafik manages to convey great lightness and pleasure to the senses and to the mind through his masterly use of colours, spaces and materials. The graffiti signs, which are dug out of the dense body of the paint, the enamels, the stuccoes and the multifarious materials that Shafik introduces into his paintings, have the power to harmonise the serried, ornate layout of the Egyptian hieroglyphics in an ancient bas -relief with the more fairytale and suspended pictures of a Novelli or of a Perilli: where the images seems to be referring back to a remote elsewhere, almost lost in depths that appear more existential than autobiographical.
Shafik’s material, this material that is so present, so emphasised, loved precisely for its values that are tactile, precious, this material reveals a connection both with a culture of decoration of a specifically Eastern type, for example, that oft the ‘Omayyad’ or the’Abbasid’, a culture of stuccoes and ceramics, of « jewels among the sands » (in fact, jute, the substratum that the artist has favoured recently, is the colour of sand) and with the investigations of the European Art Informel and the American Action Painting.
Shafik was born in 1956, in El Badari, Egypt.
He has studied both at the Cairo academy and at the Brera Academy in Milan (Italy)
1995 Golden Lion award at the Biennial in Venice
1995 Personal exhibition at the St. Jacques Gallery
1997 Collective exhibition « The colours of Africa », St. Jacques Gallery
1998 Personal exhibition at the St. Jacques Gallery
2007 Abu Dhabi International Fine Art and Antiques Fair with Galerie St. Jacques