Filmmaker and writer Philip Rizk’s practice has moved beyond the documentary mode that directly engages with realities of historical moments, allowing the documented image to be infiltrated by imaginary worlds. Avoiding overtly loud images of war and destruction and delving into utopic and other fictional realities, Rizk pushes viewers to scrutinise the role of the past in present calamities while highlighting quiet moments of inspiration that provide valuable lessons for the future.

Rizk’s Out on the Street – Variations (2015) (with Jasmina Metwaly) has been exhibited in numerous international venues, including Curitiba Biennial, Brazil (2020); Fundación PROA21, Buenos Aires (2019); Krasnoyarsk Museum Center, Russia (2018); Goethe-Institut, Karachi (2017); Goethe-Institut, Mumbai (2017); Sursock Museum, Beirut (2017); Bétonsalon, Paris (2016); and German Pavilion, Venice Biennale (2015). His other works have been included in exhibitions such as A Colonial Landscape, Fotohof, Salzburg (2015); Sturm, Cairo: Open City, Museum für Kunst und Gewerbe Hamburg (2013); Sturm, Museum Folkwang, Essen, Germany (2013); and Between the Walls, Townhouse Gallery of Contemporary Art, Cairo (2008).

He has been the recipient of several awards at film festivals, including Best Feature Film, Latin Arab International Film Festival, Buenos Aires (2015), for Out on the Street; Best Documentary, Cairo International Documentary Festival (2012), for Remarks on January 25 (2011); and Hossam Ali Award for Best Arab Documentary, Ismailia International Documentary Festival, Egypt (2010), for This Palestinian Life (2009).

Rizk holds a bachelor’s degree in philosophy from Wheaton College, Chicago (2004), and a master’s degree in Middle East studies from the American University, Cairo (2010).

Born in 1982 in Limassol, Cyprus, Rizk lives and works in Cairo.

SAF participation:
Production Programme 2020