Khalil Rabah is best known for rewriting and inventing history. Emerging from his deep involvement and background in architecture, his works aim to provide an alternative vision that challenges public perceptions and expectations. He reflects and draws on different methodologies to engage with themes of displacement, memory and identity, examining the relationship between humans and their surroundings as well as the nature of global human suffering.
Solo exhibitions of his work have been held at Kunsthaus Hamburg (2015); e-flux, New York (2013); Beirut Art Centre (2012); The London Office, Artist Studio (2007); Brunei Gallery, School of Oriental and African Studies, University of London (2007) and Khalil Sakakini Cultural Centre, Ramallah (2004), among others. His work has also been shown in group exhibitions at Sharjah Biennial 13 (2017); Sharjah Art Foundation (2016); Marrakech Biennale 6 (2016); Cartagena Biennial, Colombia (2014); Mori Art Museum, Tokyo (2012); Sharjah Biennial 10 (2011); Mathaf: Arab Museum of Modern Art, Doha (2010); Tate Modern, London (2007) and British Museum, London (2006).
He has been artistic director of Riwaq Biennale, Ramallah since 2005. He is the founder of The Palestinian Museum of Natural History and Humankind and co-founder of Al Ma’mal Foundation for Contemporary Art, Jerusalem and ArtSchool Palestine, London. He also served on the advisory board of the Delfina Foundation, London and the curricular committee of Ashkal Alwan Home Workspace Programme, Beirut.
This person was part of Sharjah Biennial 10 and 13 and the exhibition do it بالعربي [in Arabic] (2016).
While many Western critics have emphasised the national, religious and ethnic origins of Khalil Rabah’s preoccupation with boundaries and containment, his work engages with more conceptual and universal questions relating to the shifting borders of narrative, history and space.