Manal Al Dowayan investigates and comments on community ties, memory and the female condition in Saudi Arabia through her black and white photography, video, sound, sculpture and interactive installations. The scope of her projects varies widely, including, for example, documenting the history of Saudis working in the oil industry, studying Saudi female teachers dying in road accidents and establishing shared channels for women to protest social inequality.
Al Dowayan’s work has been exhibited regionally and internationally in such institutions as the Sharjah Art Foundation, UAE (2016); Santander Art Gallery, Madrid (2016); Los Angeles County Museum of Art, USA (2015); Prospect New Orleans, American Biennial, USA (2014), Gwangju Museum of Art, South Korea (2014); Mathaf: Arab Museum of Modern Art, Doha (2014) and Victoria and Albert Museum, London (2013), among others. Her works can be found in the collections of the British Museum, London; Louisiana Museum of Modern Art, Humlebaek, Denmark and Mathaf: Arab Museum of Modern Art, Doha.
She holds a master's degree in systems analysis and design and worked as the creative director of a Saudi Arabian oil company for ten years before devoting herself full time to artistic endeavours. She participated in the Robert Rauschenberg Residency, Captiva, USA (2015) and the artist-in-residence programme at the Delfina Foundation, London (2009). She also received a research fellowship from New York University Abu Dhabi (2014).
Born in Dhahran, Saudi Arabia in 1973, Al Dowayan currently lives and works between Dhahran and Dubai.