M. Abouelnaga

Visual artist, curator, art instructor

Mohamed Abouelnaga is a multidisciplinary visual artist, art professor, curator and developer. Throughout his colorful career, he created award winning art projects, fulfilled his responsibility towards his community and brought up new generation of young artists with his teaching, workshop and his multitude of practices.
Born in the Egyptian city of Tanta, Abouelnaga graduated with honor in 1983 from the Faculty of Fine and finished in PhD in in Philosophy of Art from Alexandria University in 1997. He was the first Middle Eastern artist to receive a grant from the Japan Foundation to study the arts of papermaking.
In the following decade, he made several solo shows in Egypt and around the world that varied between painting, video and installation. To name a few, Borusan Kultur Ve Sanat Association, Istanbul, Turkey (1997), Townhouse Gallery, Cairo (2000) and Art Academy, Rome (2000). He was also part of numerous group exhibitions during the same period until nowadays. They include the
23rd Lithuania Triennial for Book Art (2003), Guest of Honor in Festival de Popoli del
Mediterraneo, Sicily (2005), Festival Mondial des Arts Nègres, Dakar (2006), What Happens Now?, Art Palace (2007) and most recently in Exile, Art Centre Silkeborg Bad, Denmark (May, 2009).
Abouelnaga also represented Egypt in the Venice Biennial 2002 and received the First Prize of the Alexandria Biennial in 2001. His recent exhibition also includes: “Exile” at Art Centre SilkeBorgBad (Denmark) 2009, “Building Bridges”, Art Center, Mexico (2011, “Egyptian Art”, Gallery Art Space, Dubai, “African Art Mojo Gallery, Dubai (2013), “Hay Carriers” at Markheya Gallery, Doha (2013), “Soad Hosny”, at Duke Gallery London, 2013. He recently recived the first price for his Video Art Cairo 11 from Danube Video Art Festival in Austria.
As a curator, he created in 2002 the biggest and most successful Artist Book Biennial in the Alexandria Bibliotheca. Entitled “Imagining the Book”, this event had international artists from different cultures, backgrounds and nationalities who implied their own visions in this special art practice. In 2009, he was assigned by the Egyptian Ministry of Culture to become the curator of the 25th Alexandria Biennial for Mediterranean Countries that will open December 17, 2009. Two years later, in 2011, he was the curator of Sharjah Children Art Biennial.
In addition to his art and academic practices, Abouelnaga is using his multidisciplinary skills in the social development field. In 2002, he founded Elnafeza for Contemporary Art & Development where he trained more than 25 handicapped youngsters in using rice straws, Nile water lilies and bananas stalks for papermaking.

Mohamed Abouelnaga Works as an assistant professor at Cairo University, while on leave to work in Qatar as curator of Visual Art Center of the Qatari Ministry of Culture, Arts and Heritage since 2010 until now … His work consists of artistic programs and local / international exhibitions. Also he is responsible for the artistic activities of the Department of Arts Management according to the proposed plans and programs…
Abouelnaga has Arab and international contacts of institutions and museums being the Curator of a large number of events including Alexandria 2009-2010, the first and leading Biennale in the Middle East, as it first edition was organized in 1954…
As well he curated the Biennale Imagining The Book in 2002, which opened at Bibliotheca Alexandrina where more than a hundred artists from all over the world as well as more than 40 institutions and international organizations have participated. The second edition was then  organized in 2004 featuring a large number of international artists and organizations.
He also curated the 3rd International Biennale of Sharjah for Children’s Arts, the largest of its kind in the Middle East, where 60 countries 3000 artworks were admitted in different arts.
Abouelnaga is still working as art advisor and curator for a large number of galleries and art institutions like Mojo Gallery Dubai


1983 BA (with honors) fine Arts. Faculty of fine Arts, Alexandria, Egypt
1992 Masters in Fine Arts Alexandria University, Egypt
1997 PhD. Philosophy of Art, Alexandria University, Egypt

– 2000-Current: Professor at the Specific Education Faculty, Cairo University
Where he supervised MBAs, PhDs and academia’s
– 1998-2000: Professor at the Hight Institute of Applied Arts
– 1996-1998: Professor at the Arab Academy
for Sciences and Technology (Alexandria)
– 1998-2002: Professor at the Arab Academy
for Sciences and Technology (Cairo)
– Taught various workshops across Egypt, the Arab countries and Europe


Selected Individual Exhibitions
1992 Atelier Cairo, Egypt
1993 – 1994 Alexandria Atelier, Egypt
1994 Art Center Ekhanaton Zamalek, Cairo
1996 Kyoto, Japan
1997 Masharabya Gallery Cairo, Egypt
1997 Hotel Sofitel Hurghada, Egypt
1997 Spanish Cultural Center, Alexandria Egypt
1998 French Cultural Center Alexandria, egypt with Bernard Aligan
1998 Italian Cultural Center, Alexandria egypt
1999 Art Center Ekhanaton Zamalek, Cairo
1999 Borusan Kultur Ve Sanat Association, Istambul, Turkey
2000 Town House Gallery, Cairo Egypt
2000 French Cultural Center Alexandria, Egypt
2000 Art Academy, Rome Italy
2002 International Venice Biennale (the Next) represented Egypt
2003 National Museum, Amman Jordan
2003 Karim Francis Gallery (installation) Cairo Egypt
2004 Dar Al Funoon -Kuwait
2006 Oman Dar El Anda exhibition
2006 Switzerland exhibition
2009 Alexandria Exhibition at Goethe Institute
2011 Switzerland Exhibition @ AB Gallery
2011 Los Angeles Exhibition @ADC Contemporary Art Gallery
2011 Dual exhibition with Japanese artist Ibe Kyoke @ Darb 17 18, Egypt
2011 Solo Exhibition @ Dar al-Funoon, Kuwait
2011 Solo Exhibition @ Markheya Gallery, Qatar
2011 Solo Exhibition (The Lion) @ADC Gallery, Los Angeles, USA
2011 Exhibited artworks at Abu Dhabi Art Fair (through AB Gallery)
2012 Exhibited artworks at Abu Dhabi Art Fair (through Salwa Zidan Gallery)
2012 Qalandiya International, Ramallah , Palestine
2013 Los Angeles Exhibition @ADC Contemporary Art Gallery (May 18, 2013)
2013 “Soad Hosny”, London Exhibition@ Duke Gallery (October 2013)
– 2013 First Prize for the Video Art “Cairo 11” at Danube Video Art Festival in Austria
– 2014 Islamic Art Exhibition, UAE
– 2014 Cairo Streets, Sana Gallery, Singapore
– 2014 Woven Relations, Katara Art Center, Doha, Qatar
– 2014 Orientalism, Jacaranda Images, Amman, Jordan
– 2014 Faces on Paper, Art Lounge Cairo, Egypt

March 2015 Breached Memory, Mojo Gallery, Dubai, UAE (Dubai Art Fair and Al-Serkal)
April 12, 2015 The Warrior, Solo Exhibition, Darat Al Funun, Amman, Jordan, http://www.daratalfunun.org/
2017- Solo Exhibition @ Dar al-Funoon, Kuwait
2017- Solo Exhibition gallery Daee- cairo

Selected Group Exhibitions
1984-2004 National Art exhibition, National Art Center Cairo, Egypt
1997-2004 Exhibition of Taegu Textile Design Federation (TTDF) Korea
1999 The collective Egyptian Contemporary Art, Amman Jordon
1999 The collective Egyptian Contemporary Art, Spain
2001 First Biennale Argentina, Buenos Aires
2001 “ Collective Egyptian Contemprary Art” in Spain, Portugal and Bosnia
2001 “Other Alters of Sacrifices” Al Gezira Art Center Cairo, Egypt
2003 World Bank USA, Contemporary Egyptian Art, Curated by Mansoura Hassan
2003 Papa Gallery New Heaven USA with Sean Kernan
2003 Lithuania Trienalle 23, (Book Art)
2005 Guest honor in {Festival del Popoli mediterranei}, Cecilia , Italy
2006 Dakar Festival Mondial des Arts Negres
2007 Germany workshop and exhibition (Stuttgart)
2007 “what happens now” exhibition (The Lion video installation) Cairo Art Palace
2008 Holland workshop and exhibition recycled art (wad)
2008 Italy workshop the international symposium for contemporary art (verbena)
2008 Ebdaa Gallery (Elmadena exhibition)
2009 Denmark Exhibition Art Centre SilkeBorgBad
2011 Building Bridges , Art Center, Mexico
2012 Egyptian Art @ Gallery Art Space, Dubai
2013 Group Exhibition at Mojo Gallery, Dubai
2013 Dual Exhibition at Markheya Gallery, Qatar
2014 Happening Now at Nabad Gallery, Jordan
2014 Arte&Arte, MiniArTextil, Como, Italy
2014 Singapore Art Fair
2014 Islamic Arts Festival, Sharjah
2014 Exhibition and Workshop, Gaboor, India
2015 Mini-Art International Exhibition, Visual Arts, Katara, Doha, Qatar
-2016 Sharja Calligraphy Biennial
-2016 ADC in LA USA
-2017 Mojo gallery Dubai art fair
– 2018 Drawing exhibition – cairo
Private & Museum Collections
Museum of Modern Art Cairo, Egypt
Opera House, Cairo, Egypt
National Museum, Amman ,Jordan
Paper Academy, Kyoto, Japan
Arab Fund, Kuwait
Islamic Collection, LACMA, Los Angeles, USA
Collection of HH Sultan bin Muhammad Al-Qasimi, Sharjah, UAE
Collection of Shuman Foundation, Amman, Jordan
Collection of Tarek Al-Jayyeda, Doha, Qatar
In addition to many arts purchased by renowned Art Collectors across the Arab Region Awards / Grants / Fellowships
1992 -93 2nd and 3rd Prize for painting at the Annual Salon of Young Artists, Cairo Egypt
1993 Workshop with the Mexican artist Jorge Salcidoon the Paper Art “AMATE” Alexandria, Egypt
1994 Fellowship from UNESCO-ASCHBERG Program
1994 1st Prize of the art critic researches “The place of the Art of Tahia Halim
1995 Fellowship from the Egyptian Ministry of Culture, 3 years research on
“The Role of Untraditional Materials on creativity” derived from paper art made of local egyptian plants.
1996 Fellowship from Japan Foundation (first middle Eastern artist to be awarded such a grant.
1996 Art residency at the studio of the famous Japanese artist Kyko Ibe
1998 Prize of the Mediterranean Sea, at the Inernational Cairo Biennale
1999 Workshop at the studia of Bernard Aligan, Paris France
2001 Biennale Prize at the International Biennale Alexandria 21
2001 State prize of painting for under 40 years old artist, for the year 2000

2005 workshop in the faculty of fine arts , Jordan university , {Thinking by paper}
2013 Winner of Best Video Art “Cairo 11”at Danube Video Art Festival in Austria Publications
2001 “Burning 451F, exhibition of artists’ books, Al Mahroussa publishing House, Cairo, Egypt CURATORIAL PRACTICE:
2002 General Commissioner for the project “Imagining the book 1”
2004 General Commissioner for the project “Form Through Light” Cairo & Alexandria
2005 General Commissioner for the project “ Imagining the book 2” BIBLIOTHECA ALEXANDRI
2007 General Commissioner for the project (elhakeba) Alexandria atelier
2009 General Commissioner of the 25th Alexandria Biennial
– 2010-2016 Curator at Qatar Visual Art Center where he selected and organized group exhibitions and symposium at the art center in Qatara
2017 General Commissioner for the project “Form Through Light” Cairo

Other useful Links:






http://www.almarkhiyagallery.com/artists/index.html?x=xml/elnaga.xml&KeepThis=true&TB_ifra me=true&height=400&width=820


Some of Works

1 Comment

  • Nader Helal
    December 19, 2020

    Congratulations and all the best 👍

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