Hala Elkoussy (10-6-1974, Guiza, EG) was born in Cairo in 1974. She studied at the American University before completing an MA in Image and communication at Goldsmiths College, University in London. She lectured on photography in 2002-2003. In 2004, she co-founded the Contemporary Image Collective – CiC, an artist-run initiative dedicated to the visual image, based in Cairo. In 2006, she completed a two year residency at the Rijksakademie Van Beeldende Kunsten in Amsterdam. In 2010, Elkoussy was a recipient of the Abraaj Capital Art Prize. Most recently, her feature film treatment entitled “Cactus Flower” was granted development funding by the Hubert Bals Fund, Rotterdam Film Festival.

Elkoussy’s work delves into intimate and overlooked sides of communal living to highlight the underlying dynamics at play within the complex urban structure that is Cairo.



Goldsmith College, University of London, London, GB, 2001-2002 (Image and Communication)

American University of Cairo, Cairo, EG, 1992-1996 (Business Administration)



Bijlmair, residency in Amsterdam South East, run by Centrum Beeldende Kunsten Zuidoost &

Stedelijk Museum Bureau, Amsterdam, 2008

Rijksakademie van beeldende kunsten/Dutch Ministry of Education, Culture and Science, 2005-2006

artists in residence, Aarau, CH, supported by Pro-Helvetia, 2003



2006 Dutch Ministry of Foreign Affairs/DCO/IC

2005 Dutch Ministry of Foreign Affairs/DCO/IC



2010 Abraaj Capital Prize, Dubai, UAE

2010 Hubert Bals Fund Project Development Fund, Rotterdam Film Festival, NL


Solo exhibitions

2010 Townhouse Gallery for Contemporary Art, Cairo, EG, 'First Story: the Mount of Forgetfulness'

2009 Goteborg Konsthall, Goteborg, Sweden

2006 Stedelijk Museum Bureau Amsterdam, Amsterdam, NL, 'Peripheral (and Other Stories)'

2005 Townhouse Gallery for Contemporary Art, Cairo, EG, 'Peripheral'

2003 Sakakini Art Centre, Ramallah, PA, 'Magda & Nevine: Two women from Egypt'


Group exhibitions

2010 Monumentalism, Stedelijk Museum, Amsterdam, NL

2010 Afropolis, Rautenstrauch-Joest-Museum, Kologne, DE

2010 Abraaj Capital Prize Winners, Museum of Art & Design, New York, USA

2010 Home/Land, Edinburgh College of Art, UK

2009 Disorientation II, Abu Dhabi, UAE

2009 Uncovering the Body, Mawlawi Theatre, Cairo, EG

2009 Maghreb Connection, Bamako Biennial, Bamako, Mali

2009 Sharjah Biennial, Sharjah, UAE

2009 Looking Inside Out, Kunsternes Hus, Oslo, Norway

2009 Traum und Wirklichkeit. Zeitgenössische Kunst aus dem Nahen Osten, Zentrum Paul Klee, Bern,

2009 Africaines, Pan African Festival, Algiers, Algeria

2008 PhotoCairo 4, the long short cut, Townhouse Gallery, Cairo

2008 Cairoscape,Photo Festival, Athens, Greece

2008 Snap Judgements, Stedelijk Museum, Amsterdam, NL

2008 Cairoscape, Kunsthaus Bethanien, Berlin

2008 The Gates of the Mediterrenean,Rivoli, Italy

2008 Maghreb Connection, Ecole Superieure des Beaux Arts, Le Mans, France

2008 Snap Judgments: New Positions in Contemporary African Photography - Brooks Museum of Art, Memphis,

2008 Geopolitics of the Animation - MARCO Museo de Arte Contemporánea de Vigo, Vigo

2007 Port City, on Mobility and Exchange, Arnolfini, Bristol, UK
Port City - John Hansard Gallery, Southampton (England)

2007 Focus Agypten, Past/Present, Kunstverein Hildesheim, Germany

2007 Alles Klar? Salzburger Kunstverein, Austria

2007 Geopolíticas de la animación - Centro Andaluz de Arte Contemporáneo (CAAC), Sevilla

2007 Geopoetics. Video as a document of place, Centre Jose Guerrero de Granada, Spain

2007 Global Cities, Tate Modern, London

2007 Out of Place, Sfeir Semler Gallery, Hamburg

2007 Out of Place, Sfeir Semler Gallery, Beirut, Lebanon

2007 Nazar, National Museum Singapore, Singapore

2007 Maghreb Connection, Centre D’Art Contemporain, Geneva, Switzerland

2007 Urban Reviews, Townhouse Gallery, Cairo, EG

2007 Snap Judgments, Museo Tamayo, Mexico City, Mexico

2006 Krognos House, Malmö, SE

2006 1st Biennial of Art & Architecture, Canary Islands, SP

2006 Parts, Xiamen City, CN, 'Rijksakademie at Parts'

2006 Nikolaj Contemporary Art Center, Copenhagen, DK, 'Coding, Decoding'

2006 International Center of Photography, New York (NY), US and Miami Art Central (FL), US 'Snap Judgments: New Positions in Contemporary African Photography', (exh. cat.)

2006 Brancolini Grimaldi arte contemporanea, Roma, IT, 'Personae & Scenarios. The new African photography'

2006 Q arts Gallery 'Nazar', Derby, GB

2005 Billytown, Rijswijk, NL

2005 Sammlung Essl, Wien, AT, 'Hotspots 05'

2005 Messina, IT, 'Mediterrenean Encounters'

2005 Public Space With A Roof, Amsterdam, NL, 'Relocated Identities: Overexposure'

2005 Regione Autonoma Valle D'Aosta, IT, 'Starving Images', (exh. cat.)

2005 Townhouse Gallery for Contemporary Art, Cairo, EG, 'Actual Position'

2005 Rijksakademie van beeldende kunsten, Amsterdam, NL, 'Open Ateliers'

2005 9th International Istanbul Biennial, Istanbul, TR, 'Istanbul'

2005 Toys - Townhouse Gallery, Cairo

2004 Kornhausforum, Bern, CH, 'Rites Profanes, Rites Sacrés'

2004 Noorderlicht, Groningen, NL, 'Nazar'

2004 Centre de Cultura Contemporania de Barcelona, Barcelona, ES, '5eme Rencontre de la Photographie Africaine'

2004 Cairo, EG, 'In a furnished flat', site specific project; curated by Hala Elkoussy

2004 6th Dak'Art Biennial, Dakar, SN

2003 Townhouse Gallery for Contemporary Art, Cairo, EG, 'PhotoCairo'

2003 Rencontre de la Photographie Africaine, Bamako, ML

2003 Mashrabia Gallery, Cairo, EG

2003 Karlsruhe & Berlin, DE, 'Orient Okzident. Frauen Perspectiven'

2002 Menier Gallery, London, GB, 'CMYK'

2002 SoviArt Centre, London, GB

2002 St. Ives, GB, 'Videotheque 2'

2001 Al Nitaq Art Festival, Cairo, EG

2001 Tikkun Library, Milano, IT

2000 Al Nitaq Art Festival, Cairo, EG, 'Local Hero 1, the Breadman'


Film/video screenings

2011 Mount of Forgetfulness, Official Selection, Rotterdam Film Festival, NL

2009 Spotlight on Iranian & Arab Photography, Paris Photo, Paris, FR

2008 e-flux Video Rental - Centro de Arte Moderna José de Azeredo Perdigão - Fundação Calouste Gulbenkian, Lisbon

2008 Land of the Human Rights at the Limits of the Thinkable - Emil Filla Gallery, Ústí nad Labem

2008 Land of Human Rights, Rotor, Graz, Austria

2007 100 Tage 100 Videos - Kunstforeningen GL Strand, Copenhagen

2007 e-flux Video Rental - Centre culturel Suisse, Paris

2007 e-flux video rental - Carpenter Center for the Visual Arts, Cambridge, MA

2006 100 days=100 videos, Heidelberger Kunstverein, Heidelberg, DE

2006 The Images Festival of Independent Film and Video, Toronto, CA

2006 International Short Film Festival, Oberhausen, DE

2006 e-Flux Video Rental - Arthouse at the Jones Center - Contemporary Art for Texas, Austin, TX

2005 Ikon Gallery, Birmingham, UK, ‘Peripheral Stories’

2005 Good TV, Stockholm, SE, 'Peripheral Stories'

2005 Einstein Forum, Potsdam, DE, 'Peripheral Stories'

2005 Beirut, LB, 'Home Works III: A Forum on Cultural Practices'

2003 Random-ize Video Festival, Beijing, CN


Selected articles and reviews

2006 Ciel Variable, ‘Peripheral and (Other) Stories, Michele Cohen Hadria

2006 Dagens Nyhete, ‘Mellanöstern med saklig mystik’, Dan Jönsson

2006 Nieuwsbrief Stedelijk Museum Bureau Amsterdam, 'Peripheral and other stories', Clare Davies, Jelle Bouwhuis

2006 de Volkskrant, 'Dramatische lucht geeft Caïro allure', Sacha Bronwasser

2005 Bidoun, arts and culture from the Middle East, 'Hala Elkoussy. Peripheral', Negar Azimi

2005 Trouw, 'Kunstenaars krijgen ruimte op de open ateliers van Rijksakademie', Sandra Spijkerman

2004 Vrij Nederland, ‘Kijk, dit zijn wij óók’, Sacha Bronwasser



2010 First Story:Mount of Forgetfulness, Collection of Stedelijk Museum Amsterdam

2010 On red nails, palm trees & other icons, take 2, Al-Archief, Collection of Tate Modern

2009 Peripheral,Collection of Bristol's City Museum & Art Gallery, UK

2006 Commission for limited edition print by Volkswagenstiftung, DE, catalogue: ‘Entangled: Approaching Contemporary Artists from Africa’



2005 Cairo, EG, 'Image Statement Position', curator PhotoCairo 3

2004 Contemporary Image Collective, Cairo, EG, board member, 2004-2008

2004 Townhouse Gallery for Contemporary Art, Cairo, EG, 'The image, The Construct, The Self', curator

2003 Townhouse Gallery for Contemporary Art, Cairo, EG, programme coordinator PhotoCairo 2

2002 American University, Cairo, EG, lecturer on Photography, 2002-2003

1999 Freelance commercial photographer, 1999-2000