Islam Chipsy from Egypt and Aïsha Devi from Switzerland are two musicians whose main strength lies in their live performances, informed by a non-repetitive unique style that YouTube or SoundCloud will never be able to reproduce. One Plus One Makes a Pharaoh’s Chocolate Cake documents the process of a week of meetings between Aïsha and Chipsy in Cairo where they were asked to produce a collaborative music track. Shot on a VHS camera, the experimental, performative project was conceived to be full of improvisation, with no fear of failure from either the filmmakers or the musicians, and no pressure to produce a final product, be that a finished piece of music or a documentary film. Cultural exchange is not the process of ‘Here’s my culture, I’ll have some of yours’ that we sometimes think it is. Rather, it is something that should be mutual and deeply based on commonality and equality. One Plus One Makes a Pharaoh’s Chocolate Cake is an inquiry into the difficulties of artistic collaboration and questions whether anything is ever actually exchanged within the so-called cultural exchange.
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