Dr. Mustapha El-Razaz
When I meet the Artist Abd El- Salam Eid, i am being recalled by a human presentiment of
gratification – his amiable smile, his enthusiasm, his ,stacked with ambition and anxiety,
debate…!!, also , another feeling often comes upon me.. that I am in the presence of a
flowing creative energy, an experience thronged with a wide spectrum of technological and cultural
expertise, in the domain of materials, he exploits in his plastic creations: both familiar and oddities.
He possesses a hunter’s sensitivity, when he picks up wastes, left over industrial items, processed
material residues, fibers, ropes cloth, nets, plaits, resins, epoxies , and resins, Synthetic, chemical,
or natural…etc, he is really a proficient and encyclopedic in that domain.
Eid himself is an institution. He has his own apprentices and assistants, He specifies roles for each,
while planning his bulky projects for the achievement of a harmonious artwork, compatible with the
cooperative spirit of community at work, in a refreshing atmosphere of accomplishments.
A contemplating survey in the artistic career of this distinguished Artist reveals that Eid has been
collecting a huge sum of expertise along his extended artistic career. Being a veteran in a wide
spectrum of artistic expression: painting, drawing, collage, sculpture, graphic, photography, mural
painting, architecture, installation, and decorative arts, gave his achievements a peculiar taste. His
lighting schemes interplay with movements, within solid and architectural installations of futuristic
features. In terms of stylistic qualities, his versatility is beyond count. He is an inveterate real painter.
Meanwhile, he is not lacking a poetic talent, with a romantic touch. His compositions are always coherent
and witty. Also he is pure abstract painter, in an orthogonal geometric style, or in his Manipu-
lation of diagonal ethereal ribbons, that cut these perpendiculars in a tight and compact arrangement.
Also, you can safely say that he is Tashist (Touchiest) who deals with permeated dyestuffs
on wet papers, a Dadaist in his framing of ordinary, common items, such as sheep horns, ostrich
eggs, or carpet dusters. As we have said before, he is also an erudite collage. All what his eyes are
falling upon have been affixed, pasted, crimped, rolled, unfolded, and conglutinated to the painting
surface, but with perceptible awareness of their undulations. In that respect, he uses cloth, nets
that have been saturated with epoxy resins solidifiers. Then he mobilizes his imagination, together
with technological capability, to fulfill limitless fantastic forms and compositions: hanged down
nets, heaped solidified cloth work, stacks of crimped papers, or dominant frames, upon which you
can find braided collages of all sorts, where they would look like invincible gates. Meanwhile the
Artist leaves the entire canvass surface vacant, except with smooth color fields as infinite skies at
the horizons. Then you may feel as if you are laying upon your back on a water surface, looking at
the sky… ethereal dreamy and suggestive sensations..!!. Eid is dealing with colors in their rainbow
grades for expressing an expansive cosmic space with its whispering melodies. He may surround
that space by a square window frame, made of crimped heaps of loose fishing nets, intertwined
with old worn “dantella’s patches”. Within its folds. You can find grown fungus, buttons, toys, glass
eyes, combs, and all sorts of every day’s items…all are being embedded in epoxy resin, thus they
look like chemical fossils.
Ropes are symmetrically braided, in different thicknesses (diameters), but at the ends, there are
always interwoven dyed, jumbled up tufts. We can safely assume that these tufts are suggestive of
a latent, but rebelled and ready to burst out energy…within Abd El –Salam Eid…that bright faced
and peaceful artist.
In intimacy and closeness, Eid is also dealing with ready-made objects, and scrap machine parts.
He possesses a penetrating eye when he is selecting among myriads of items at the flee markets
and scrap shops, where he impart upon them a new unexpected surreal vitality.
With his braided ropes, in their natural linen color, or when they are dyed, Eid establishes plastic
relationships of intense opulence. Through their spiral twists, or parallel arrays, when they block his
Solids and surfaces, or when they became merged together, he was able to cast and generate an
invisible organic and biological pulse.
These collage assembled features, on one side, and primitive, traditional, and metaphysical aspects,
on the other side, represent the common fabric between Effat Nagui, who established that trend in
the Egyptian plastic art movement, and Abd El salam Eid, Dawestashy, and Farouk Wahba.
We conclude from all what has been mentioned that Eid is dealing with two contradictory basic parameters,
in the artistic vocabulary: he is an expert in structural laws, with all their calculations and
equilibrium. Having a deep concern with real shadows, that is projected upon his three dimensional,
framed, and relieved artworks. He is a dexterous technologist, possessed by temptation towards
natural materials, which he mixes with epoxy resins. In addition, he is proficient in recycling readymade
objects, with amazing sophistication, thus he is raising a dynamic interactive debate among
various pastes and textures. On the other hand, he is enthralled to romanticism, exploited symbols,
and metaphysical interpretation of tangible prefabricated or ready-made objects. Thus he streams
into them a sudden dramatic pulse.
From these two contradictory modes, we can then read the works and personality of Abd El-Salam
Eid: an encounter between structural point of view, and dreamy transparent romantic aspect. All
those have been realized through the weight of his exploited materials…. In fact, Eid is in search of
monumentality through the spirit of the myth.
We will not go out of objectivity if we say that he is a comprehensive collection between the arts
of collage, assembly techniques, and plastic pastes. Eid is coupling an architectural concept and
historicity with cybernetics. Like his colleagues among Alexandrian Artists of the same generation:
Mustapha Abd El Moety, Farouk Wahba, and Dawestashy, he tends toward framing- frames and
windows that define specific regions and ethereal worlds. All these stylistic transformations and
what are within, represent the momentum that Eid is living with, since his early postimpressionistic
still life paintings, in thick colored pigments, passing by his landscapes and open spaces, and until
these drawings, where spot tings, together with random effects, are accumulated in black and white.
In these drawings, he establish his hatchings and dexterous compact lines, to adjust the shadows
levels, which are graded from deep black to the pure illuminated, spectral colors, and spiral setups,
When the Artist got the chance of creating colossal murals, through the Art patron, Dr. Mohammed
Said El Farsy, Ex active governor of Jedda, and a man of culture, who initiated a huge urban project
to renovate the city, in an aesthetical and artistic perspective. Thus the Artist has found his stray
goal in these projects, which established him at the forefront of Egyptian mural painters. Since that
time he worked out series of giant projects in Riyadh(KSA), Leon (France), in several cities, and his
native city Alexandria. Eid creations in that domain were substantial credentials that he obtained
the state prize of merit (2005). The Bibliotheca Alexandrina’s Art Center held on that occasion a retrospective
exhibition of the Artist, and thus offering the public a valuable chance to be acquainted
with tat outstanding career.
During his artistic career, Abd El – Salam Eid received many prizes, most important among them:
the Italian art Academy laubiam1997, State promotional (furtherance) prize in painting, jury prize at
Cairo forth international biennale 1992, the Italian art Academy laubiam1997.
Abd El-Salam Eid, Professor of painting, head of painting Department at the faculty of Fine Arts
Alexandria University. Participating at the art contemporary plastic art movement during more than
thirty years. Held more than thirty one man shows at various art Galleries allover Egypt and abroad.
Represented his country at several international Biennales and festivals, most important among
them :The International festival for painting-Canne – France (1977), 2end biennale” giovanne Saint”-
colborodolo-Italy(1980)- an honorary prize,Grand Palais Salon –Paris(1981), fifth and seventh two
world festivals-sapioneta(1983),Venice Biennale(1992),international Cairo Biennale(1993) -Arbitration
committee prize, has been selected by the national plastic art centers to design and execute a
huge mural with the title” Utopia” in the name Of Egypt, under the supervision of UNESCO, for Tony
Garnier’s Museum for murals in the city of Leon., Bibliotheca Alexandrina’s international Biennale
for book, and the book’s imagination international Biennale(2004).