• International Modern & Contemp auction at Christies

    Sale 7893

    International Modern & Contemporary Art, Including Masterpieces from The Collection of Dr. Mohammed Said Farsi

    27 April 2010, Jumeirah Emirates Towers Hotel

  • Lot 75

    Youssef Nabil (Egyptian, b. 1972)


    Price Realised  


    Youssef Nabil (Egyptian, b. 1972)
    each signed, dated and located 'New York 2007' (on the reverse)
    hand coloured gelatin silver prints
    each 2¾ x 15¾in.(27 x 40cm.); overall 42½ x 15¾in. (108 x 40cm.)
    Executed in New York in 2007, this work is number five from an edition of seven (4)

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    These stills from a televised concert of Umm Kulthum exaggerate the performer's ritualistic, almost prayer-like gestures. They are accompanied by words- 'I die', 'I live forever', 'Don't forget me', 'Amen'- that are themselves a comment on the singer's extraordinary status as a diva. This status has survived well beyond her death, inspiring such contemporary artists as Nabil, who was barely three years old when she died.
    Part comic strip, part religious icon, the images are bothe satirical and sublime. Nabil came across them in the middle of the night while watching television in New York, an act of serendipity that he has described almost in terms of a revelation. Despite the spontaneity of this discovery, STAR has been carefully manufactured, with Nabil hand-painting the prints so as to give them an almost dream-like intensity.
    (Saeb Eigner, Art of the Middle East: Modern and Contemporary Art of the Arab World and Iran, London, 2010, p.103.)

    Special Notice

    lots are subject to 5% import Duty on the importation value (low estimate) levied at the time of collection shipment within UAE. For UAE buyers, please note that duty is paid at origin (Dubai) and not in the importing country. As such, duty paid in Dubai is treated as final duty payment. It is the buyer's responsibility to ascertain and pay all taxes due.

    Pre-Lot Text



    Saeb Eigner, Art of the Middle East: Modern and Contemporary Art of the Arab World and Iran, London, 2010, p. 103.

    Octavio Zaya, Youssef Nabil, Ghada Amer, Faten Hamama and Shirin Neshat, YOUSSEF NABIL: I won't let you die, Ostfildern, 2008 (illustrated in colour p. 220-223).