Egypt Independent: Culture-Main news en Youssef, 16, runs art galleries, highly-awarded <img src="" alt="" title="" class="imagecache imagecache-media_thumbnail" width="152" height="114" /><div>&ldquo;I long for the days of my course with Syran plastic artist Sorour Elwany,&rdquo; with those words 16-year-old Youssef Ayman, the son of Shubra al-Kheima, the labor district known for its artistic heterogeneity, began <a href=""><span style="color:#00ff00;">his remarks on Facebook</span></a><span style="color:#00ff00;">.&nbsp;</span></div><div>&nbsp;</div><div>Youssef is awaiting the mid-year vacation to resume his plastic art courses.</div><div>&nbsp;</div><div><img src=";oe=557DF473&amp;__gda__=1433699531_eff34605273c2472b59dd069941eaa90" style="height: 301px; width: 536px;" /></div><div><div><em>Youssef painting the piece &quot;Only&quot;</em></div></div><div>&nbsp;</div><div>Youssef Ayman, a secondary school student started drawing when he was three years old, his father says.&nbsp;</div><div>&nbsp;</div><div>The young man has been awarded many prizes and his paintings have been on display in several galleries organized by the educational department at his school. He also gained much credit for a gallery at the American University in Cairo three days ago.</div><div>&nbsp;</div><div><img src=";oe=558AC616&amp;__gda__=1433785262_1a8564d582c244f3d37409e0e66c88dc" style="height: 251px; width: 536px;" /></div><div><em><span style="font-family: Helvetica, Arial, 'lucida grande', tahoma, verdana, arial, sans-serif; line-height: 19.3199996948242px;">&quot;Half Face&quot; -&nbsp;</span><span style="font-family: Helvetica, Arial, 'lucida grande', tahoma, verdana, arial, sans-serif; line-height: 19.3199996948242px;">acrylic</span></em></div><div>&nbsp;</div><div>His first gallery was ten days ago at the Giza Cultural Palace, where he displayed 100 pieces, his father says, adding that he sold half of them for a nominal price ranging between LE20-LE30.</div><div>&nbsp;</div><div>Youssef&rsquo;s works contributed to a child book published in 2011, when he was 12 of age.</div><div>&nbsp;</div><div><img src=";oe=55743D75&amp;__gda__=1434911646_a286a13d442feacbe2e821e1d54f59ad" style="height: 378px; width: 536px;" /></div><div><em>The cover of an upcoming book &quot;Woshosh Sada&quot; (Blank Faces)</em></div><div>&nbsp;</div><div>His drawings are also appearing in a colloquial literary work called &quot;Woshosh Sada&quot; (Blank Faces), which are still being printing.&nbsp;</div><div>&nbsp;</div><div>Youssef uses wax color pencils, acrylic and coal for his works, and dreams of joining the Faculty of Fine Arts at Cairo University.</div><div>&nbsp;</div><div><img src=";oe=557BA5DA" style="height: 760px; width: 536px;" /></div><div><em><span style="font-family: 'lucida grande', tahoma, verdana, arial, sans-serif; font-size: 13px; line-height: 18px;">&quot;Confusion&quot; - c</span><span style="font-family: 'lucida grande', tahoma, verdana, arial, sans-serif; font-size: 13px; line-height: 18px;">oal</span></em></div><div>&nbsp;</div> Wed, 04 Mar 2015 16:44:00 +0000 Mohamed Mostafa 2445498 at sites/default/files/photo/2015/03/04/94/youssef_ayman.jpg Researchers discover hippopotamus ancestor in Kenya <img src="" alt="" title="" class="imagecache imagecache-media_thumbnail" width="152" height="114" /><div>A&nbsp;<a href="">recent research paper</a> written by a team of French and Kenyan paleontologists has revealed the discovery of a 28-million-year-old ancestor of the hippopotamus in the volcanic earth of Lokone, located in the Lake Turkana basin of Kenya. Forty other fossilized species of four-legged whales from the same period were also unearthed.</div><div>&nbsp;</div><div>The discovery not only links the present-day hippopotamus to the anthracothere, an extinct species of mammals related to hippos and cetaceans (whales, dolphins etc.), but also proves that hippos and whales are the closest living cousins on Earth.</div><div>&nbsp;</div><div>The team of researchers, headed by Jean-Renaud Boisserie, have called this new fossil species Epirigenys lokonensis, referencing the location in which the discovery was made. The&nbsp;Epirigenys has bridged a gap between the oldest discovered fossilized hippo, which goes back 20 million years, and the anthracothere, the oldest of which is 40 million years old and was discovered in Romania.</div><div>&nbsp;</div><div>Currently, the oldest cetacean fossils found are 53 million years old and the new discovery would indicate that the common ancestor between hippos and whales is approximately 55 million years old.</div><div>&nbsp;</div><div><strong>Migration</strong></div><div>&nbsp;</div><div>Approximately 18 to 110 million years ago,&nbsp;Asia and Africa were separated by 100 km of water. During this period, rodents and monkeys crossed the sea from the north to the south, followed by mammals like lions, zebras and antelopes, the study says.</div><div>&nbsp;</div><div>This new discovery has also managed to clarify the migratory period for the extinct anthracotheres. With the knowledge gleaned from the Epirigenys, it is now believed that the anthracotheres migrated from Asia approximately 35 million years ago, 15 million years before other animal species. This would indicate that hippos have been on the African continent much longer than originally thought.&nbsp;</div><div>&nbsp;</div><div>Despite the extraordinary new information the research team has managed to extract from this discovery, the chronology completing the historical puzzle between the hippopotamus and its cetacean cousins is still partially missing. Further study into the 15-million-year gap will one day help form a clearer picture of how these mammals evolved.&nbsp;</div><div>&nbsp;</div> Wed, 04 Mar 2015 12:46:00 +0000 MENA,Egypt Independent 2445389 at sites/default/files/photo/2015/03/04/484151/291609_0.jpg Madonna wants 'a drink' with French far-right leader Le Pen <img src="" alt="" title="" class="imagecache imagecache-media_thumbnail" width="152" height="114" /><p>Madonna wants to &quot;sit down and have a drink&quot; with France&#39;s far-right leader Marine Le Pen to hear out the woman she once demonised on stage by showing a picture of her with a swastika on her forehead.</p><p>The American singer -- who only last week called Le Pen&#39;s National Front party &quot;fascist&quot; and said France and Europe now &quot;feels like Nazi Germany&quot; -- made the offer in an interview late Monday on French television network Canal+.</p><p>&quot;I would like to sit down and have a drink with her. I want to understand where she&#39;s coming from,&quot; Madonna said.</p><p>&quot;I would like to meet her and really hear it from her mouth to my ears what she believes in in terms of human rights, yes in terms of human rights -- not only in France but in all of the world.&quot;</p><p>The US diva&#39;s tone towards Le Pen was markedly different than in the past. In 2012, Madonna superimposed a swastika on a picture of Le Pen during a Paris concert, provoking a threat of a lawsuit from the French politician.</p><p>Last week, on French radio station Europe 1, Madonna claimed &quot;it feels like Nazi Germany&quot; in Europe because &quot;anti-Semitism is at an all-time high&quot; in France and elsewhere on the continent.</p><p>The diva also told the radio that she had received &quot;a lot of criticism and threats from Marie (sic) Le Pen&quot; and the National Front.</p><p>But in the Canal+ interview, Madonna conceded: &quot;Maybe I misunderstood Marine Le Pen. I&#39;m not sure. I don&#39;t want to start a war. I want peace in the world.&quot;</p><p>During the TV show, Madonna met and hugged one of the cartoonists who survived the January 7 massacre at the offices of Charlie Hebo, the French satirical newspaper.</p><p>The 56-year-old also sang a couple of songs from her new album, &quot;Rebel Heart&quot;, that she is promoting ahead of a global tour.</p><p>Madonna&#39;s on-stage tumble at the Brit Awards, when a cape she was wearing failed to detach on cue and brought her crashing down steps, was raised early in the interview.</p><p>The interviewer quoted a Chinese proverb that says &quot;the biggest difficulty is not how you fall, but to get up each time that you fall&quot;.</p><p>That earned a surly response from Madonna. &quot;Is it going to be a whole night of these jokes?&quot; she asked.</p><div>&nbsp;</div> Tue, 03 Mar 2015 13:38:00 +0000 AFP 2445422 at sites/default/files/photo/2014/12/22/499612/madonna.jpg Culture Ministry investigates Salam theater portrait destruction <img src="" alt="" title="" class="imagecache imagecache-media_thumbnail" width="152" height="114" /><div>Culture Minister Gaber Asfour ordered an investigation over the destruction of the &quot;100 years of enlightenment&quot; portrait in February and formed a committee headed by his legal advisor.</div><div>&nbsp;</div><div>The committee recently visited Al-Salam Theater and looked over the portrait, as well as questioned officials.</div><div>&nbsp;</div><div>The investigation&#39;s outcome is expected to be reviewed by the minister within a few hours on Tuesday, at which point necessary measures will be taken with the perpetrators.</div><div>&nbsp;</div><div>Fine artist Salah al-Anany dedicated the portrait to the theater in 1990. It depicted Egypt&rsquo;s most famous figures in different fields throughout the 20th century. It was destroyed by those working on the &ldquo;Man Without Agenda&rdquo; play in February as they were preparing for the production which opened on 3 February.</div><div>&nbsp;</div><div>&nbsp;</div><div><em>Edited translation from Al-Masry Al-Youm</em></div> Tue, 03 Mar 2015 10:47:00 +0000 Al-Masry Al-Youm 2445378 at sites/default/files/photo/2014/09/09/39/gaber_asfour.jpeg