Car enthusiast Elhamy Ezzat creates home décor designs from recycled car parts turning them into unique pieces of art with great attention to detail and quality.
“I am a car enthusiast in every possible way and have been restoring classics for over 19 years now. I restored over 40 cars back to their former glory,” he says.
Bringing this idea to Egypt, Ezzat has always been in the car business, having worked for different car companies since 1996 in the field of sales and marketing. He left the industry in 2015 after becoming the general manager of Mini Cooper Egypt.
Ezzat also collects classical pieces and restores them, then, either leaves them in his garage or sells them. “It was never about the profit. This business is not profitable, and to me it is about the challenge of bringing a piece back to its former beauty and preserving its history. Those cars are really rare, and I believe they have their own spirit that will not come around again,” he explains.
His collection includes very rare cars, leading him to win many competitions both in Egypt and worldwide for his work in restoration. He also hosted a TV show, which was paused last May, that talked about everything related to the car industry.
After the show, Ezzat had more time to spare, and that is when he founded “JunkyArt”. “For as long as I can remember, I have decorated my house with car parts, but none of them had any function. That is when I got the idea to create pieces that would actually be beneficial and have some sort of use around the house, and so I started by making hangers, lamps and consoles. Whenever my friends would see them, they would immediately place orders, and that is why I decided to turn this into a business and start selling to the public.”
Ezzat currently has over 50 designs and products. He draws the designs himself, but as each piece needs at least five different specialized craftsmen, he hires them individually for each project.
He explains that we have amazing craftsmanship in Egypt but unfortunately they lack work ethics, “They are brilliant and creative, but when it comes to deadlines, it is very hard. Since I deal with at least 20 different types of craftsmenship, and each one makes a small but vital contribution, it is tough to know when I will be done with a specific piece.”
One of the challenges Ezzat faces is marketing, as it needs a separate budget.
First Introduction to the Market
The first reveal for “JunkyArt” was during the AutoMech Formula show that was held last September, where Ezzat displayed his designs at the exhibition. “People could not believe that they were handmade and 100% Egyptian because of their high quality,” he mentions.
Each piece is unique so the clients are aware that they are taking away a one-of-a-kind product. Prices range depending on the rarity of the parts needed, as some are very rare, therefore are expensive, while others are more available.
“My prices are very reasonable and start from EGP 500. If I sell something for EGP 1,000, you can find a similar one in Europe for 1,000 Euros. This is why I have considered exporting because I will have an advantage over the other suppliers,” he says.
Marketing and Showcasing
Currently, people order through the Facebook page, and Ezzat is working on creating a website that will focus on the history of each piece and the parts used, highlighting the different industrial phases each one goes through to reach the final product.
“I was considering opening a showroom, but since Ariaf design house in Dokki is exclusively selling my products, things became much easier for me as it handles everything and targets the right people, allowing me to focus more on the designs rather than the hassle of running a showroom. Surely though, once things kick off and I need a bigger space, I will consider getting my own place,” comments Ezzat.
“At a young age, my kids knew which car was for playing and which was a valuable maquette of mine. Now, they are in their twenties and one is a drifter and the younger sibling is also a car enthusiast. My house is like a museum with lots of maquette of over 500 cars, some of them costing over EGP 10,000.
Ezzat now wants to focus on building the brand, “I want people to gain knowledge about cars, for example, when people buy a product, they should ask what pieces are used to make it.”
The next step for Ezzat is to start designing larger furniture pieces for bedrooms, kitchens and living rooms.
Ariaf’s Facebook: ariafdesignhouse
Junky Art’s Facebook: We.make.it.ART