Arts

Inside Doaa Abdel Hady’s circle

CAIRO – 31 October 2017: In a new exhibition at Medrar, young talented artist Doaa Abdel Hady unveils the various phases of depression through a unique depiction of paintings in a new exhibition called “Circle,” which was inaugurated at Medrar on Monday and will run until November 2.
Abdel Hady decided to symbolize the phases of depression based on personal experience through art. She explained to Egypt Today in an interview how she recalled her 13 months of depression in 13 paintings.
Each painting reflects a certain stage of depression, starting from rock bottom, marking the deepest phase of depression to the painting marking her resolve to overcome depression.
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The Exhibition [Photo Courtesy: Doaa Abdel Hady]
Egypt Today toured the exhibition to find the first stage of depression that Abdel Hady portrayed with a colorless painting. Black expressed this phase of over thinking, severe sadness, and the hollow feeling of inner death.
The phases then follow a weak unknown glimpse of hope and forces her wounded soul to feel an unjustified instinct for survival.
The rest of the paintings express the different emotions one encounters in depression such as resistance, isolation and temporary insecurity.
Many paintings show the impact of love on this depressed woman, who finds glances of hope. She wants to touch the light, and rise again against her long night lamentations. She aims to fly, even if only with one wing. She re-builds herself, she sticks to her ground, and finally she flies with no wings at all; only to fall again.
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One of the exhibited works [Photo Courtesy: Doaa Abdel Hady]
Face to face with depression again, she finally makes the decision to recollect her fragmented thoughts and break the vicious circle of overthinking.
A simple story that anyone who has passed or passes through depression is probably familiar with. Relying on a faceless female figure in her paintings gives a wider opportunity for the audience to imagine him/herself in this situation. "It is not subjective, it is open for everyone to feel," Abdel Hady told Egypt Today.
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One of the exhibited works [Photo Courtesy: Doaa Abdel Hady]
Abdel Hady uses many symbols to attract the audience such as a sand clock, ballet dancer, and wings. She also intended to enclose all her figures inside a circle to stress the fight with one’s inner demons.
“The last drawing, which is the most interesting one, reflects her thoughts of finally leaving that circle,” Marawan Abd Elmoula, painting description writer, explained to Egypt Today. "The last painting could be interpreted as her either aiming to return to her circle or as her resistance and will to break her circle."
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The last drawining in Circle story [Photo Courtesy: Doaa Abdel Hady]
“Doaa and I passed through depression but in different situations, even though the phases were the same," he explained.
Abdel Hady also further explained how Marwan could relate to her thoughts which were translated into paintings that took five months to create.
The second part of the exhibition focuses on other depressed situations such as late night paintings which aim to translate late night overthinking.
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Late Night paintings [Photo Courtesy: Rana Atef]
Abdel Hady converted depression into beautiful pieces of art and has used several effects such as music and video in exhibiting her last painting to emphasize her message.
Abdel Hady’s exhibition was not only a voice for those suffering from depression, it was a way of showing other people depression itself. The hidden, invisible monster under someone’s bed, depression is one of the most difficult psychological illnesses to comprehend. Many depressed individuals feel isolated and misunderstood because people who have never experienced depression cannot comprehend its circle.

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