Maha Maamoun Egyptian
An iconic scene from Chris Marker’s film La Jetée (1962) of a man traveling back in time in post-apocalyptic Paris is re-enacted here in a deserted building in contemporary Egypt. The reading of an excerpt from The Revolution of 2053: The Beginning (2007), an Arabic-language science fiction novel by Egyptian author Mahmoud Osman, has been dubbed over the photographic sequence.
Maha Maamoun created this video a year before the revolution of 2011 that toppled former president Hosni Mubarak. The afterlife of 2026 in the Egyptian political context lends an additional resonance to a work already meditating on the nature of memory, teleology, and cause and effect relations. Viewed today, the video appears to foretell real-world events, while returning us to the present-time of its production on the eve of a revolution by narrating a scene set on the threshold of fictional revolution.