Cairo’s Cool Art. Man, it’s a bummer! Darb 1718, this awesome contemporary arts spot in Cairo, got wreck on January 6, and folks in the art scene are majorly bummed. They spilled the tea on Instagram, saying they’re super sad and kinda piss about their spot getting torn down without any heads up or compensation.
Cairo’s Cool Art: No Heads Up, No Payback
The Insta post spilled the deets – the main building of Darb 1718, a place that’s been a home for all sorts of artists, got demolish out of the blue. It’s a historic spot, and the fact that it got wiped out without any warning or moolah in return is seriously mess up. The post called it a reminder of how Cairo’s history and vibe are under constant threat, with communities getting the boot without a second thought.
Widening Highways and City Makeovers
So, why’d they smash it? Well, the authorities said they needed to widen a highway. Cairo’s going through a major glow-up, thanks to President Abdel Fattah el-Sisi. They’re trying to modernize the packed city and drop a fresh $59 billion capital in the desert. They’ve already thrown up over 4,000 miles of new roads, 900 tunnels, and bridges. But, this whole development gig is taking out whole neighborhoods and beloved spots like Darb 1718.
Darb 1718’s Wild Ride Through Urban Changes
Darb 1718’s drama started last August when the government started tearing down places in the ancient Fustat area – a spot where a bunch of old-school crafty folks live. Moataz Nasreldin, the brains behind Darb 1718, spilled the beans back then, saying the government told him they’re squashing the art center for a fancy highway. Then, in September, they kicked everyone out and closed the place.
This spot’s been around for 16 years, throwing cool events like exhibitions and concerts. They named it after the “bread riots” in 1977. It a sweet haven for artists until it got the wrecking ball.
Losing Art and Taking Heat
Cairo’s Cool Art. On top of everything, Nasreldin went on a talk show and spilled that the demolition trashed works by 150 foreign artists worth millions. The bulldozers didn’t spare the exhibition hall and two workshops, causing a ton of damage.
Even Lamis Elhadidy, a big-shot Egyptian TV host who usually has the government’s back, had some rare criticism. She straight-up said, “We hate our history and our old Cairo. We want a city that will be nothing but roads, asphalt, bridges.”
The loss of Darb 1718 is not just about a building; it’s about losing a rad cultural spot and part of Cairo’s vibe. It’s got people thinking about how cities can change without wiping out the good stuff.