Egyptian, born in 1972
Egyptian photographer and video artist Youssef Nabil’s passion for cinema can be read in all his works. He uses its aesthetics and drama to immortalise faces, parts of Arab culture, the mood of an era or his solitary self in a practice halfway between photography and painting.
The artist has built a strong visual identity since his first photographs in the early 1990s. Using the ancient technique of colouring black and white silver prints by hand, he depicts the glorious and fantasised Egypt of his childhood. The resulting velvety-toned works are dreamlike and nostalgic but haunted by the experience of exile and death. Beyond the question of identity, he seeks to embody a “Mediterranean” world without borders.
Nabil's work is being presented for the first time by the Pinault Collection during the 2020 monographic exhibition “Once Upon a Dream” at the Palazzo Grassi in Venice.