Manal AlDowayan is a Saudi artist, living and working in Dubai, UAE and Dhahran, Saudi Arabia. Born in Dahran, Saudi Arabia in 1973.
Embracing diverse media, Manal AlDowayan’s work encompasses black and white photography, sculpture, video, sound, neon and large-scale participatory installations. Her artistic practice revolves around themes of active forgetting, archives, and collective memory, with a large focus on the state of Saudi women and their representation.
She has documented social groups like the oil men and women of Saudi Arabia in her project, If I Forget You Don’t Forget Me, and has addressed the impact of mass media on propagating intentional erasing of identities in her project Crash, highlighting the unnamed Saudi teachers dying in car crashes across Saudi Arabia. Her participatory projects have attracted hundreds of women to use art as a new platform to address social injustice like Tree of Guardians, Esmi-My Name, and Suspended Together.
In 2014 she was a recipient of a research Fellowship from NYU AD and was invited in early 2015 to the Robert Rauschenberg Residency in Captiva, Florida. Manal has shown her work in Prospect 3 New Orleans - The American Biennale (2014/15), in collateral shows at the Venice Biennale (2009/11), and at Museums around the world like Gawngju Museum in South Korea, Louisiana Museum of Modern Art in Denmark, The Victoria and Albert Museum in UK, and Mathaf Museum of Modern Arab Art in Qatar. Her art works are part of public collection at the British Museum, LA County Museum, Louisiana Museum, and Mathaf.
CV – Manal AlDowayan
2003 MSC. Information Systems Analysis and design. London Metropolitan University. London, UK
1999 BSBA. Computer Information Systems. Suffolk University. Boston, USA
2017 I am here. Rojas + Rubensteen Projects. Miami, USA.
2017 And I, will I forget? Sabrina Amrani Gallery. Madrid, Spain.
2016 And I, will I forget? NYU. New York City, USA.
2015 I had no wings - Alsekal Avenue. Dubai, UAE
2014 Crash - MATHAF Arab Museum of Modern Art. Doha, Qatar
2014 Crash - Cuadro Fine Art Gallery, Dubai, UAE
2013 Journey of Belonging - Athr Gallery, Jeddah, Saudi Arabia
2013 The State of Disappereance - Cuadro Fine Art Gallery, Dubai, UAE
2012 Esmi (My Name) - Cuadro Fine Art Gallery. Dubai, UAE
2012 If I forget You Don't Forget Me - Cuadro Fine Art Gallery. Dubai, UAE
2012 The Samawi Collection II - Ayyam Gallery. Dubai, UAE
2012 The Samawi Collection II - Katara Galleries. Doha, Qatar
2010 And We Were Speaking Through Silence - Sultan Gallery. Kuwait City, Kuwait
2010 And We Had No Shared Dreams - Dubai, UAE
2009 Bastakia during Dubai Art Fair
2009 Landscapes of the Mind - Dubai, UAE
2018 Femitopías: Mujeres, feminismo y cultura visual. Curated by Margarita Aizpuru. Centro de Arte Contemporáneo Rafael Botí. Córdoba, Spain.
2018 Melancholia. Curated by Louma Salamé. Villa Empain, Boghossian Foundation. Brussels, Belgium.
2017 Letters. Athr Gallery. Jeddah, KSA.
2017 Beatutiful Stranger. Bovenverdieping Museum De Wieger. Deurne, Holland.
2017 Bayn – The in-between. Warehouse 421. Abu Dhabi, UAE.
2017 Safar. Gate 2 Gold Moor Mall. Jeddah, KSA.
2016 Barjeel Art Foundation. Imperfect Chronology - Mapping the Contemporary II. Whitechapel Gallery. London, UK
2016 Homeground Contemporary Art from the Barjeel Art Foundation. Maraya Art Centre. Sharjah, UAE.
2016 Genera#ion جير. The Minnesota Project. San Francisco, USA.
2016 Illumination - New contemporary art at Louisiana. Louisiana Museum of Modern Art. Humlebæk, Denmark.
2016 Barjeel Art Foundation. Imperfect Chronology – Mapping the Contemporary II. Whitechapel Gallery. London, UK.
2016 Looking at the World Around You. Contemporary Works from Qatar Museums. - Sala de Arte Santander - Fundación Banco Santander, Madrid, Spain
2016 Do it - Sharjah Art Foundation Art Spaces, Sharjah, UAE
2015 Walls and Margins - Maraya Art Centre - Barjeel Art Foundation, Sharjah, UAE
2015 Home Ground - AGA Khan Museum, Toronto, Canada
2015 What is Home? - Pump House Gallery, London, UK
2015 The Unbearable Lightness of Being - Yay Gallery, Baku, Azerbaijan
2015 FotoFest: View From Inside: Contemporary Arab Photography, Video and Mixed Media Art -Emirates Palace Gallery, Abu Dhabi, UAE
2015 Collacurating: Sculptural Perspectives - Dubai, UAE
2015 Anonymous Was A Woman - Hafez Gallery, Jeddah, Saudi Arabia
2015 Islamic Art Now: Contemporary Art Of The Middle East - LA Country Museum, LA, USA
2014 The Other Sky - JAMM Dubai, Dubai, UAE
2014 Prospect.3: Notes for Now - Prospect New Orleans, New Orleans, USA
2014 Songs of Loss and Songs of Love - Gwangju Art Museum, Gwangju, South Korea
2014 The Other and Me - Sharjah International Photography Exhibition, Sharjah Museum, UAE
2014 FotoFest 2014 - View From Inside - FotoFest Biennial, Houston, TX, USA
2014 Arab Contemporary - Louisiana Museum of Modern Art, Humlebæk, Denmark
2014 Paintings, Sculptures & Projects Garden, Mathaf - Museum of Modern Arab Art, Doha, Qatar.
2014 Mualgat Exhibition as part of the Jeddah Arts - Jeddah, Saudi Arabia
2014 Now Babylon, architectural exhibition - Louisiana Museum of Modern Art, Denmark
2013 Against the Grain - CAP Kuwait, Kuwait City, Kuwait
2013 ICA Film Screening: Qatar UK 2013 Year of Culture. Cinema on the Steps - London, UK
2013 Mind/Body exhibition - Dubai, UAE
2012 A Subtle Perfume - CAN Foundation - Space CAN, Seoul, South Korea
2012 Light from the Middle East: About the Exhibition - Victoria & Albert Museum - V&A, London, UK
2012 I Am. Harnessing 21st Century Challenges: A Focus on Women - Clinton Foundation, Arkansas, USA
2012 #cometogether - Old Truman Brewery, London, UK
2012 Soft Power - AIAan Art Center, Riyadh, Saudi Arabia
2012 The Samawi Collection II - Ayyam Gallery - Beirut, Lebanon
2012 Simply Words? - AB Gallery - Lucerne, Switzerland
2012 Domination, Hegemony and The Panopticon - Traffic, Dubai, EAU
2012 Edge of Arabia Jeddah: We Need to Talk - Al Furusiya Marina, Jeddah, Saudi Arabia
2012 Edge Of Arabia Jeddah: We Need To Talk - EOA. Projects, Abingdon, Oxfordshire, UK
2011 Metropolis. city life in the urban age 2011 - Noorderlicht Photo Festival, Groningen, Nederlands
2011 Freedom to Create - National Gallery of Bosnia and Herzegovina, Sarajevo, Bosnia
2011 The Future of a Promise - Collateral exhibition, Venice Biennale 2011 - Magazzini del Sale, Venice, Italy
2011 The Bravery Of Being Out Of Range - Athr Gallery, Jeddah, Saudi Arabia
2011 Freedom to Create - Galerie Mirchandani + Steinruecke, Mumbai, India
2011 Strike Oppose - Maraya Art Centre - Barjeel Art Foundation, Sharjah, UAE
2011 Freedom to Create - Ana Tzarev Gallery, New York, USA
2011 Righ Here Right Now - Cuadro Gallery, Dubai, UAE
2011 Edge Of Arabia - Termina, Dubai, UAE
2011 Look Beyond - Opec Fund for International Development, Vienna, Austria
2010 Peripheral Vision - Maraya Art Centre - Barjeel Art Foundation, Sharjah, UAE
2010 Once Upon A Time - Bait Muzna Gallery, Muscat, Oman
2010 Fluid Form I - Contemporary Art from Arab Countries in Seoul, South Korea
2010 Grey Borders/Grey Frontiers - Saudi Contemporary Art comes to Berlin, Germany
2009 Journey into Art - Khobar, Saudi Arabia
2009 Nawafith (Windows) - Saudi Italian Artist Exchange, Exhibit Rome, Italy
2008 Edge Of Arabia: Contemporary Art From Saudi Arabia - Venice, Italy
2008 Edge Of Arabia: Contemporary Art From Saudi Arabia - London, UK
2008 Reorientations, Exhibit Brussels, Belgium
2008 The Right to Space, Manama, Bahrein
2007 Regards de Femmes (through the Eyes of Women), Riyadh, Saudi Arabia
2007 Self-Representation in the Arabian Gulf: Perspectives in Photography and Video - Virginia Commonwealth University in Qatar - VCUQ, Doha, Qatar
2007 Common Ground - Sharjah Art Museum, Sharjah, UAE
2007 British Foreign Trade Office, Khobar, Saudi Arabia
2007 Nawafith (Windows) - Exhibit Riyadh, Saudi Arabia
2007 The City and the Street - Circle 4, Muscat, Oman
2006 National Oil Companies Meeting in Sauidi Arabia, Khobar, Saudi Arabia
2006 Gallery of Social and Political Art, Boston, USA
2006 Saudi Aramco Art Group, Dhahran, Saudi Arabia
2006 StarSight Project, Dubai, UAE
2006 Riwaq Gallery, Manawa, Bahrein
2006 Common Ground Exhibit arabian Gulf region
2005 Thahab - Exhibition Dhahran, Saudi Arabia
2004 International Sudent House Photo Exhibit, London, UK
2003 Looking Through The Glass Exhibit - Burgos, Spain
2003 International Museum of Women, San Francisco, USA
2018 ARCOmadrid. Sabrina Amrani Gallery. Madrid, Spain.
2017 Art Brussels. Sabrina Amrani Gallery. Brussels, Belgium.
2017 The Armory Show. Sabrina Amrani Gallery,. New York, USA.
2017 ARCOmadrid. Sabrina Amrani Gallery. Madrid, Spain.
2016 ArtBo. Sabrina Amrani Gallery. Bogota, Colombia.
2015 Robert Rauschenberg Foundation. Captiva, USA
2014 The Project Room. Mathaf Museum of Modern Arab Art. Doha, Qatar
2011 The Townhouse Gallery. Cairo, Egypt
2010 Cuadro Gallery Residency Program. Dubai, UAE
2009 Delfina Foundation. London, UK
Awards and grants
2014 Arab Women Award: Artist of the year
Imperfect Cronology: Arab Art to the Contemporary- Works from Barjeel Foundation- Edited by Omar Kholeif with Candy Stobbs- Published by Whitechapel Gallery, London, UK. 2015- ISBN 978-3-7913-5485-9
Do it (in Arabic)- Edited by Hans Ulrich Obrist y Hoor AlQassimi- Published by the Sharjah Art Foundation 2016- ISBN 978-1-926473-05-5.
Home Ground Contemporary Art from the Barjeel Art Foundation. Published by The Aga Khan Museum. 2015. ISBN: 978-1-926473-05-5
Color and Line - The Naqvi Collection. Published by The Naqvi Collection. 2015. ISBN: 978-9948-18-110-1
Summer Autumn Winter ... and Spring: Conversations with Artists from the Arab World, by Sam Bardouil and Till Fellrath. Skira Publishing Group.
Prospect.3: Notes For Now, by Franklin Sirmans and contributions by Christin Y. Kim and Rita Gonzalez. Prestel Publishing. ISBN: 978-37-9135-403-3
View From Inside - Contemporary Arab Photography, Video, and Mixed Media Art. FotoFest Houston. ISBN: 978 - 90-5330-825-7
Arab Contemporary - Architecture and Identity. Louisiana Museum of Modern Art. ISBN: 978-87-92877-24-6
Light from the Middle East: New Photography. V&A Publishing. ISBN: 978-3-86930-557-8
If I Forget You, Don’t Forget Me. Cuadro Publications. ISBN: 978-9948-16-986-4.
Arab Photography Now, edited by Rose Issa and Michket Krifa. ISBN: 978-3-86828-189-7
Metropolis: City Life in the Urban Age Noorderlicht, edited by Wim Melis and Ton Broekhuis. ISBN: 978-90-76703-46-6
Edge of Arabia. Edge of Arabia. ISBN: 978-0-9561146-1-8
Ibn Saud: The Desert Warrior and His Legacy, by Michael Darlow and Barbara Bray. ISBN: 978-0-7043-7181-1
Imagining Ourselves: Global Voices from a New Generation of Women. International Museum of Women. Editor Paula Goldman, March 2006, pages 194-195.
Self-Representation in the Arabian Gulf – Perspectives in Photography and Video. Virginia Commonwealth University Qatar. ISBN: 978-1-934253
Common Ground. Catalogue for Common Ground at Sharjah Art Museum, British Council.
King Abdulaziz Center for World Culture. Dhahran, Saudi Arabia
Louisiana Museum of Modern Art. Humlebæk, Denmark
The British Museum. London, UK
Los Angeles County Museum of Art (LACMA). Los Angeles, USA.
Mathaf Museum of Modern Arab Art. Doha, Qatar
Jordan Gallery of Fine Arts. Amman, Jordan
Abdul Latif Jameel Foundation. London, UK
Abu Dhabi Authority for Culture and Heritage (ADACH). Abu Dhabi, UAE
Nadour Foundation. Berlin, Germany
Barjeel Foundation. Sharjah, UAE