“The polarity between the two fundamentally different cultures began to dissolve within me to the benefit of a new, distinct third quality […] this is certainly no cheap compromise, it is not mere tolerance but a Synthesis.”
Prof. Ibrahim Abouleish
Prof. Ibrahim Abouleish (1937 – 2017) founded SEKEM in 1977, an initiative which fosters sustainable development towards a future where every human being can unfold their individual potential, where mankind lives together in social forms reflecting human dignity, and where all economic activities are conducted in accordance with ecological and ethical principles. As part of his vision, Prof. Abouleish established Heliopolis University for Sustainable Development in 2009; the first university in the Middle East declaring sustainable development as its main guiding principle.
About The Space of Culture
The Space of Culture emerges from Heliopolis University for Sustainable Development as part of the university’s vision of striving towards “[…] the sustainable development of individual consciousness […] in Egypt and the world”.
The driving philosophy of the Space of Culture is based on the connection and integration of various cultures at a central point in Egypt. It represents meeting of the East, West, North, and South here in Egypt, the crossroad of civilizations. Here, all cultures and ideas can enmesh in a series of dialogues, performances, exhibitions, etc to enrich the region with a diversity of ideas, beauty, and cultures. The Space of Culture serves as a lighthouse for the whole community.
Heliopolis University for Sustainable Development was inaugurated in 2012 with the aim to pioneer the introduction of the concepts and principles of sustainable development to its students and the Egyptian community at large. The non-for-profit university includes the faculties of Engineering, Pharmacy and Drug Technology, Business and Economics, Physical Therapy, and Organic Agriculture. All Students participate in the cross-faculty core program which presents arts, music, theater, languages, and much more, striving to unlock creativity and innovation.
The Space of Culture is meant to be an enlightening forum for students, professors as well as residents of neighboring villages and cities, national and international culturists, researchers, entrepreneurs, partner universities, and SEKEM friends. Its impact will be witnessed at both local and international levels. It should significantly help to raise new generations who can express themselves. It should also guide them to refine their talents, feelings, and thoughts.
Activities of the Space of Culture
Based on its philosophy and mission, the Space of Culture engages in a diverse series of initiatives and activities that aim toward enriching the surrounding community. It offers intercultural experiences through a mix of outreach programs, festivals, artistic development schemes, visual arts, music, literature, and poetry.
The Space of Culture creates easy access to arts and culture for all, particularly to the most excluded and marginalized communities. Activities may include but are not limited to:
- Musical performances
- Theatrical performances
- Poetry recitation
- Workshops about intercultural dialogue
- Presentations, speeches, and talks
- Documentary movies
Location and Facilities
The Space of Culture is a multi-component cosmos that comprises the Ibrahim Abouleish (Founder of Heliopolis University) Theater, a Roman theater in the heart of the Heliopolis University campus that can host up to 1,000 participants. There is also the Hoda Shaarawy Theater Hall that can accommodate up to 250 persons and the Ibn Rushd main hall for exhibitions and lectures for another 200 participants. Furthermore, all of the three components of the Space of Culture are designed with a special emphasis on supporting visuals and acoustics and are equipped with modern sound and light systems for elegant and captivating performances.
To follow the latest news and events at the Space of Culture, please visit its website.