Say goodbye, Self Portrait, Alexandria 2009


Hand colored gelatin silver print, printed in 2013

50 x 75 cm

The artist is seen from behind in a white djellaba rowing a small boat among fishing vessels in the port of Alexandria. The velvety, pastel-toned atmosphere contributes to the scene's dreamlike mood.

Self-portraiture is intertwined with the experience of exile in Youssef Nabil's work. He usually shows himself from behind in traditional clothing, contemplating the horizon. Here he re-enacts, in a fantasied way, his departure from Egypt, which he left in 2003 to live freely from his art.

Acquired by the Pinault Collection, Say Goodbye, Self-Portrait, Alexandria 2009 is being presented for the first time during Nabil's 2020 solo show “Once Upon A Dream” at the Palazzo Grassi in Venice.