7SONS – 2004


Florian Thalhofer
Mahmoud Hamdy
A trip to the Beduines
Korsakow film, multiple screen installation, DE, EN
Goethe Institut, Cairo, 2004
Sheik Suellim in 7sons

Two young artists – one from Cairo the other one from Berlin go on a trip to visit a Beduin tribe.

They go to the Sinai visit sheik Suellim and his family. It is a trip into a very different world. Thalhofer and Hamdy were witness of a sharia court case and they learn about Beduin life from the sheik and three of his sons. The Beduins explain their world, and they talk about how they see the modern world. They ask profound questions that might sound naive.

The Beduins sit in the desert on the sand and they seem to know why they are sitting there. They know, how their world works. This viewpoint enables them to provide feedback to modern time’s culture and society from the angle of the outsider.

“Sheik Suellim has seven sons” Maher says proudly. “Seven Sons, and not one daughter?” I wonder. “Seven sons,” Maher replies, “and further more six daughters.”

The world of the Beduins is incompatible with modern society. Thalhofer and Hamdy know that but they try to bridge the gap. And for the split-second it takes, for a joke to click, it works.

7sons was first presented to the public in October 2003 as an interactive two-screen-video-installation at the Goethe-Institut, Cairo.