Art of Egypt
Stephan Breuer in the axis of the Egyptian Pyramids Presents a 21st Century Icon
— Stephan Breuer
For the third edition of Art of Egypt, 14 contemporary artists, including Stephan Breuer, are set to unveil unprecedented and interactive artworks on the Giza Plateau, facing the mythical Pyramids, from October 26th to November 18th, 2023. Launched by Nadine Abdel Ghaffar in 2021, Forever Is Now is the first and only contemporary art exhibition taking place on the UNESCO World Heritage Site of the 4500-year-old Pyramids of Giza. The exhibition aims to bring together artists from around the world to reflect on the enduring legacy of one of humanity's most captivating and mysterious structures.
Stephan Breuer will participate in the 2023 edition of the exhibition "Forever is Now 03." Among the participating artists are Stephan Breuer (France), Arne Quinze (Belgium), Artur Lescher (Brazil), Azza Al Quibaisi (United Arab Emirates), Carole Feuerman (United States), Costas Varotsos (Greece), Dionysios (Greece), JR (France), Mohamed Banawy (Egypt), Pilar Zeta (Argentina), Rashid Al Khalifa (Bahrain), Rashed Al Shaishai (Saudi Arabia), Sabine Marcelis (Netherlands), and Sam Shendi (Egypt and United Kingdom).
Stephan Breuer takes us on a fascinating journey through the most iconic monuments. His artistic work is an exploration of the concept of the Sublime in the digital age. His cutting-edge technological creations are poetic gestures that challenge our relationship with eternity. Breuer is currently exploring the symbolism of "icons," which take the form of ultra-thin gold artifacts, minimizing their physical footprint before integrating them into the virtual cloud. A visionary approach led one of his icons, "Looking for Paradise," an angel from a Rembrandt painting, to become the first NFC-chipped artwork authenticated by the Louvre Museum in 2021. Stephan Breuer invites us to consider our history through the prism of "Atemporality." Notable presentations include a performance commissioned by Artcurial, Paris, in 2011, solo exhibitions at the Imperial Palace of Compiègne, France, in 2013, and the Franco-American Museum of Blérancourt, France, in 2017, as well as virtual projects related to the Palais Royal Garden, Paris, in 2018, the National Museum of Rome in 2022, and his upcoming exhibition in Egypt on the Giza Plateau in 2023.
Facing the pyramids of Egypt, I wanted above all to make a simple gesture. Stephan Breuer's "icons" are mysteriously high-tech and spiritual, designed to connect our emotions to the sublime. I have been interested in the symbolism of icons for several years. These mystical works, with their gold background, refer to an intangible dimension and exert a real fascination. The word "icon" is also used in the digital world to signify an image, a file, or a sign. I wanted to invent a 21st-century icon.
IN THE AXIS OF THE PYRAMIDS
TEMPLE ·I· is positioned exactly in line with the three pyramids of Khufu, Khafre, and Menkaure. If you draw a line connecting their respective summits, it leads to the location of this artwork. "TEMPLE ·I· takes the form of an inverted golden triangle that seems to levitate in space like an oxymoronic sign that visually overlays the pyramid shapes." The lightness of the artwork, the gold reflected by the sun that makes it immaterial, its apparent fragility are all dialogue elements enriching our sensitive perception of space.
AN IMMATERIAL MONUMENT
This golden triangle reverses the symbol, and this was the main axis of my research in designing TEMPLE ·I·. Stephan Breuer Ancient Egypt aspired to eternity, and their monumental achievements are material traces informing us of their presence. TEMPLE •I• is not a physical monument celebrating a king but an immaterial monument designed to preserve the memory of every human being who comes into contact with this artwork. Thanks to the most advanced technologies, we can connect with this 21st-century icon and explore the different digital dimensions of the artwork. "For the artwork TEMPLE ·I·, one of the latest technologies I used is POAP (Proof of Attendance Protocol), which preserves the presence of physical or virtual visitors to this artwork. On-site in Egypt, an NFC chip is integrated into the gold triangle, allowing easy connection with a smartphone. The visitor receives a unique and tamper-proof digital artwork in return, "You Are in the Axis of the Pyramids," a kind of eternal proof of their encounter with TEMPLE ·I·. This POAP then provides access to a new digital dimension of the artwork, containing various elements stored within it. There is a part of the artwork related to knowledge and understanding; thus, you can find a wonderful text by the eminent philosopher Baldine Saint Girons on the relationships between Egypt and the Sublime, which was published in the Entretiens de la Garenne Lemot and which she revisited for the occasion." - Stephan Breuer
EMOTIONAL ARTIFICIAL INTELLIGENCE
"To go even further in this idea of an immaterial monument, I have integrated emotional artificial intelligence for the first time, allowing visitors to leave a video message. AI will be able to develop a new type of generative and collaborative artwork through these videos, working on emotions and language, thus enabling each visitor to become a co-creator of TEMPLE ·I·." - Stephan Breuer QR Code to Connect to the TEMPLE •I• Artwork The artwork is accessible worldwide. Stephan Breuer wanted everyone to connect with TEMPLE •I• and obtain a unique digital artwork that allows exploring the various digital dimensions of the artwork, texts, the "Higher Consciousness" collection, and access emotional artificial intelligence. ABOUT DANAE.IO Created by art historians and blockchain experts, DANAE.IO offers a unique support solution based on the best of both the art and crypto worlds, guided by the following observation: artistic value, rarity, and utility determine the value of a digital artwork. In collaboration with DANAE.IO, Stephan Breuer will unveil a series of 10 virtual artworks in NFT format.
ART OF EGYPT & FOREVER IS NOW
Since 2021, Art of Egypt by Culturvator has been organizing an annual flagship exhibition of contemporary art, creating a dialogue between contemporary art and heritage, thus linking the past and the present. Last year, the fair celebrated the success of Forever is Now 02, showcasing 12 artists from around the world, and gathered many prominent public figures, including Her Majesty Queen Mother Sofia of Spain, Michael Bloomberg, UN Special Envoy for Climate Ambitions and Solutions, and former Mayor of New York, the Minister of Culture and Youth of the United Arab Emirates, Her Excellency Noura Al Kaabi, and many others.
Since 2023, Art of Egypt has been a project affiliated with the multidisciplinary cultural consulting company Culturvator.
NADINE ABDEL GHAFFAR
Nadine Abdel Ghaffar is a Franco-Egyptian art consultant and curator based in Cairo, responsible for creating and organizing some of the most discussed and viral artistic and fashion moments in recent years. In 2021, Nadine Abdel Ghaffar was appointed Knight of the Order of Arts and Letters by the French government, in recognition of her efforts to enrich the art world, and was elected one of the 50 most influential women in Egypt, an award given annually to honor women who have a positive influence on society. She also received the Woman Entrepreneur of the Year award from the EEA (Egyptian Entrepreneurship Award).
In the official statement of the fair, Nadine Abdel Ghaffar, Founder and Curator of Art of Egypt by Culturvator, states: "This year will be our most ambitious edition with 14 participating artists - the largest program we have ever presented. The upcoming edition, like previous ones, will continue to create unexpected and stimulating dialogues between humanity's ancient past and its contemporary present - ultimately demonstrating the lasting influence of Egypt's ancient cultural heritage and its ongoing ability to inspire both artistic and public imagination in new ways. Egyptians and international visitors will be able to interact with and experience contemporary art in the context of this legendary and ancient monument."