Lot 42
  • 42

Georges Hanna Sabbagh

18,000 - 25,000 GBP
22,500 GBP
bidding is closed


  • Georges Hanna Sabbagh
  • The Aswan Cataract 
  • signed G.H. Sabbagh '25
  • oil on canvas 

Catalogue Note

Nubia is derivative from the word Noba which was used to describe a nomadic people who settled in lower egypt around the 4th century. Nubia remains to be one of the longest surviving civilizations that has existed on the banks of the Nile river.

Sotheby's is honored to be presenting a rare selection of paintings by Georges Hanna Sabbagh, Seif Wanly, Khadiga Riaz and Effat Nagui to showcase the history of Nubia.  A historically significant selection - as these works chronicle  life prior to the building of the Aswan High Dam and the consequences of the project. The construction of the Aswan High Dam in the 1960s forced the displacement of 50,000 Nubians, and Lake Nasser buried many ancient villages.

The example by Georges Hanna Sabbagh depicting the First Cataract from 1925, is a pictorial historical depiction. The earliest painting from the selection, unlike the other works, Sabbagh historizes the region and allows us insight into a list past. The geographical boundaries of Nubia begin at the First Cataract at Dabôd Village through the Third and Fourth Cataract to the south in Sudan.

The construction of the Aswan High Dam in 1964 lead to the destruction of the organic culture and identity of Nubia - causing displacement and refugees. Then Minister of Culture, Dr. Tharwat Okasha led a group of Egyptian scholars, artists and thinkers to document Nubia to create a the state Nubian Archive.

Effat Nagui studied the mythical and magical side to Nubia


Khadiga Riaz - a rare Egyptian artist and the granddaughter of the father of Egyptian poetry Ahmed Shawkj took an anthropological route

Seif Wanly - presented this abstract work on Nubia