Owais, Hamed (1919–2011) By Radwan, Nadia
Born in Beni Soueif, Egypt, Hamed Owais is one of the leading painters of Egyptian social realism. He was a partisan of the ideals of the Gamal Abdel Nasser era and was inspired by Mexican muralists, such as Diego Rivera and David Alfaro Siqueiros. His work portrays the daily life of the Egyptian working class through a clear and direct style, reflecting the strength of his social convictions. Having graduated from the School of Fine Arts in Cairo in 1944, he pursued his studies at the Institute of Art Education in Cairo where he received his diploma in 1946. A year later, he founded, together with other artists of his generation, the Egyptian “Group of Modern Art”. Following a teaching career at the Faculty of Fine Arts in Alexandria, he received a scholarship in 1967 to study at the Royal Academy of Fine Arts of San Fernando in Madrid. On his return to Egypt, he served as the head of the Faculty of Fine Arts in Alexandria (1977–1979).