Hyperreal Perspicuities: Multi-Narrative Reconstructions of Modern Egypt

Kamal Ranchod

M2

Supervisors:

Distinction, Corobrik 1st Prize, Examiner's Choice Award. 

Sarah De Villiers, Dr. Huda Tayob,

Naadira Patel, Adam Osman

Unit:

18 - Hyperreal Prototypes

Website:

This project investigates drawing as representation developing prototypes in the form of drawings, instruments and immersive videos. These prototypes develop modes of representation which subvert linear viewpoints and illustrate the multiplicity of narratives embedded within space.

The project draws on tactics from two sources. First, the idea of a rhizome in the writings of Deleuze and Guattari. A rhizome is a subterranean root formation found in plants such as ginger. Rhizomes operate below the surface growing horizontal into decentralised structures. Rhizomes work with ideas of heterogeneity, connection, multiplicities and cartography to subvert linear narratives, privileged viewpoints, and challenge centralised power structures. The second source, Performative Cartography by Nanna Verhoeff challenges the cartesian way of seeing that separates the observer from the observed. Using navigation as performance observers are transformed into participants within space.

By focusing on Modern Egypt between 1827 and 1952 the project uses drawing to construct hidden hauntings of colonialism and modernisation across three main historical events. These events are the Battle of Navarino, The Bombardment of Alexandria and the 1952 Cairo Fire. The project manifests in the form of an event called “The Parade of Phantoms” that occurs in Talaat Harb Square situated in Downtown Cairo.

Shepherd’s Interior. Ranchod, K. Unit 18. 2020.

Parade of Phantoms. Ranchod, K. Unit 18. 2020.