The world of comic books! How we as adults get to be kids all over again! Our creative ventures in returning to childhood imaginations, continues to invoke our greatest attributes. Those SuperHero and SuperShero characters, which gives us incite into our Superhuman strength and prowess. It is a wonderous glory. Our imagination is peaked because our mentality is filled with these larger than life personas; of what we aspired to be when we were young.
So, when entering into a comic exhibition, wandering from art space to art piece, there was a mental time machine taking place. Each piece, each design invokes a Spirit within us; where we secretly yearn to return to the era of childhood. It is part of our Being to re-connect with a world, that children are naturally directed to. And this is where the world of comic writers, illustrators, and creators, comes into play.
Seeing Mrs. Sarah Samir Sadek on that day, compelled me more into engaging with the vibrant energy, surrounding the space. Re-connecting with a former parent of mine, allowed me to learn more about her artistic talents and attributes. You never really know a person, until you see them. And, really see them. Observing them, or their work, in creative or professional spaces. I never knew that Madame Sarah was an artist-a graphics and comic artist, at that. So, on that day (December 22, 2016), while accompanied to the koShk comics exhibition (at the American University In Cairo’s Downtown/Tahrir Main Campus), I ran into an old, Sister friend. There, and as boisterous as ever, her work hung illuminated, along with other stories and artistry of comic, fiction writing. The versatility of stories and social commentary, being showcased, through animated characters.
Madame Sarah’s work was one of intrigue; never to say the least. A young woman, who seems helpless, at first sight. Yet, through careful observation is in the awakening of her own SuperShero journey. It always starts off like that. Somehow, the Universe/God ordains the marginalized or lowliest of all in accomplishing the most difficult or impossible of feats. Through this presence, humanity is forced to connect with their talents and hidden wander. Their presence is also a way of reminding people, that material poverty is not akin to being void of talents or gifts. On the contrary, having lack of material or monetary abundance forces many of the marginalized to be in tuned; more connected with those creative energies of Universal magnitude and amazement.
In Madame Sarah Samir Sadek’s comic narrative, Haretna, (in English, “Our Alley”), viewers are given the image as to how many choose financial security over love. For this tale, an “impossible” love of Ahmed and Malak, takes center stage. It opens up with Malak calling Ahmed, after he passes her–his former love. He loves her, but loves her enough to let her live without him. The frustrations of poverty refuses to him to have Malak suffer, in his inability to provide her with a comfortable life. She sees him, and is disgruntled with his unwillingness to propose to her. For Malak, love overcomes all. Yet, he wants comfort to be the basis of her happiness. Financial struggle is not honorable; and poverty is not heroic.
Malek’s cousin wants to marry her; a suitable fit, as the family may agree. Malak does not love him, for Ahmed has her heart. We hear of these tales. They are common for those of us, who take the duty (and responsibility) of love, seriously. Ahmed’s pride takes over. Life is hard and Malak is too precious to be. . .hardened. A man, with some means, will keep her soft. Yet, it is Malak’s love for Ahmed, that will sustain her gentility.
Sarah Samir Sadek’s piece is a mastery! A telling narrative of those minds, which invokes the true essence of woman’s Spirit. The tale of woman’s desire to be nurtured, through man’s connection to her-not his wallet. Because in this journey together, man will grow and gain through her. Their resilience, together, will strengthen him to overcome societal adversities. Unfortunately, financial insecurities outwit him in the end. The greatest tragedy of any love story.
Seeing Madame Sadek, in this world, is a treasurable moment. For like many of those childlike Spirits, the miracle is that adults get to re-connect with carefree moments of a children’s world. That nourishment of looking deeper, and into Soulful, creative energy of the human experience. That like Sarah Samir Sadek, and other artists of this land (and other lands more), the world of adults and children are complemented, together. Through comics (and that experience with koShk comics), adults are able to re-claim their humanity. Personal journeys, struggles, beliefs, and stresses of normal, societal dealings are allowed to be heard; through the visual of children’s tales and children’s domains. And even more so, one is not told to “grow up,” or have one’s adult maturity questioned. You’re allowed to enter into those feelings, and become a kid, again.
There are many Ahmeds in this world. And, there are many Malaks in ever search of them. So, when meeting those beautiful, audacious, and animated minds, one is comforted in knowing, that there are those, who have retained the world of childish imagination. The gates of mental frolic receives it’s daily exercise in the Special World. This special day, at Koskh’s Comics exhibition was a galaxical presentation on display. And running into SuperSheroes, as Sarah Samir Sadek, was perfect. . .in saving the day!