Egypt hosts exhibition to help handicraft artisans market products

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Egypt hosts exhibition to help handicraft artisans market products
People visit a pottery booth at the "Turathna" handicrafts exhibition in Cairo, Egypt, Oct. 10, 2022. (Xinhua/Ahmed Gomaa)

An annual handicrafts exhibition is being held in Cairo, capital of Egypt, to help revive the country's traditional crafts and assist small handicraft manufacturers amid harsh economic conditions.

Dubbed "Turathna", meaning "our heritage" in Arabic, the exhibition kicked off on Oct. 9 and will run until Oct. 15 at the Cairo International Convention and Exhibition Center.

The exhibition showcases thousands of handmade heritage products made of leather, cloth or wood, such as handmade kilims and embroideries.

Alaa al-Sayyed, a bamboo artisan, told Xinhua that the event helped him market his products.

The art of bamboo is losing its popularity due to the spread of cheaper modern wood and plastic furniture and decorations, he said, adding this has negatively affected the bamboo industry in Egypt.

The middle-aged man, who inherited the craft from his father, pointed out that the exhibition was a great chance to sell some of his products after sales dropped dramatically due to the spread of the COVID-19 as well as the current global economic downturn.

"Many customers, mainly non-Egyptians, highly admire our products. I hope that these handicrafts industries would revive and become popular among Egyptians," he said.

Next to al-Sayyed's stand, Hamada al-Adly, owner of a handmade carpet workshop, showed visitors his distinctive works.

"These pieces of art are not easy to sell at my store… the exhibition gives me an opportunity to meet thousands of customers and is very helpful," said al-Adly.

Al-Adly said he hoped that more such exhibitions would be held as it gave artisans a platform to interact, share experiences, and generate new artistic ideas.

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