Ride the Caspian, 2011

Almagul Menlibayeva and Bahar Behbahani
Ride the Caspian, 2011
2-channel video installation
HD in colour
Surround sound
Digital photographs mounted on wall
Film Still


Almagul Menlibayeva is a contemporary artist and photographer who works simultaneously in painting, graphic art, performances, installations and videos. Translating various dimensions of beauty, decor, ritual and spiritual practices into artistic expressions, her work focuses particularly on women and their roles in pre-Soviet, pre-Islamic and even shamanistic and dervish contexts.

Her work has been part of several solo exhibitions at Groen Fine Art Collection, Arnhem, the Netherlands (2019); Cinema Babylon, Berlin (2018); TSR Art Destination, Astana (2018); Grand Palais, France (2016); Videozone, Ludwig Forum, Aachen (2015); and Ethnographic Museum, Warsaw (2013), among others. She has also participated in group exhibitions at many international institutions, including Queensland Art Gallery, Brisbane (2020); School of Arts, University of Kent, Canterbury (2020); Migros Museum für Gegenwartskunst, Zurich (2020); Lahore Biennial 02 (2020); International Biennial of Video Art, Melbourne (2019); RMIT University, Melbourne (2019); Museum of Fine Art, Shymkent, Kazakhstan (2019); Neues Museum Nuremberg (2017); and Museum Modern Art Karaganda, Kazakhstan (2017).

Menlibayeva’s videos have been shown at many international film festivals, including the Rotterdam Film Festival (2011); 22nd São Paulo International Short Film Festival (2011) and INVIDEO 2010, Milan (2010).

She is the recipient of the Main Prize at the International Film Festival Kino Der Kunst, Munich (2013); KfW Audience Award at Videonale 13, Kunstmuseum Bonn, Germany (2011) and Prize de la Nuit Award for her film Exodus, 8th International Festival Signes de Nuit, Paris (2010).

Menlibayeva holds a Master of Fine Arts from the National Academy of Arts and Theatre, Almaty, Kazakhstan (1992).

Born in 1969 in Almaty, she lives and works between Almaty and Berlin.


Menlibayeva, Almagul

Ride the Caspian

Almagul Menlibayeva and Bahar Behbahani explore the dialogue between two ancient cultures that border the Caspian Sea on the crossroads of the Middle East and Central Asia.