Alia Farid

Exhibiting at The National Museum Cardiff.

Alia Farid (b 1985) lives and works in Kuwait and Puerto Rico.

Credit: Filmmaker and Sculptor Alia Farid

Her work meditates on the intimacies of everyday objects that have been made, put to use, or operationalised by hand – mundane drinking vessels, manufacturing belts, family movies made on handheld cameras, artisanal tapestry – to excavate histories of loss and to forge pathways towards the rediscovery of shared personal connection. In material form, her works actualise conversations among people and the ecologies they inhabit in order to bring sublimated histories back to the surface, excavate material traces of the everyday, and evidence forms of creative expression that are often overlooked. 


She has had solo exhibitions in Kunsthalle Basel (2022); Contemporary Art Museum St. Louis, Missouri, (2022); Kunstinstituut Melly (Rotterdam, (2020); and Portikus (Frankfurt am Main, (2019). Recent and upcoming group shows include participation in the Diriyah Biennale (2024), “Quite As It’s Kept”, Whitney Biennial, Whitney Museum of American Art, New York (2022);  10th Asia Pacific Triennial, Brisbane (2021); “Afterglow”, Yokohama Triennale (2020); Sharjah Biennial 14: “Leaving the Echo Chamber”, UAE (2019), “Theater of Operations: The Gulf Wars 1991–2001” in MoMA PS1, New York (2019); 12th Gwangju Biennale: “Imagined Borders” (2018); 32nd Bienal de São Paulo: “Incerteza Viva” (2018). She has forthcoming solo exhibitions in 2023–24 at Chisenhale Gallery, London; Contemporary Art Museum Houston in partnership with Rivers Institute; CAC Passerelle, Brest; and the Detroit Institute of Arts. 


Alia Farid has a BFA from la Escuela de Artes Plásticas de Puerto Rico (San Juan), an MS from the Visual Arts Program in MIT (Cambridge) and an MA in Museum Studies and Critical Theory from the Programa d’Estudis Independents MACBA (Barcelona). She is the recipient of the 2023 Lise Wilhemsen Award and is a 2023–24 Radcliffe Institute Fellow.  

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Alia Farid 3D Tour

AliaFarid focuses on lesser-known events, often deliberately erased. Sculptural works investigate the mismanagement of natural resources and the impact of extractive industries on the land, ecology and the social fabric of southern Iraq and Kuwait, while video works create intimate portraits of individuals as they weave together social connections to resist and overcome adversity within these contexts and the rise of a new materialism created by an oil centred economy. Rooted in her own family history, Farids practice addresses how this intersects with the social and political history of the region to transcend national and ideological boundaries. 

Alia Farid Audio Description

YouTube player

Listen to an audio description of  Alia Farid’s exhibition.

Interview with ArtReview

Artes Mundi 10 Launch, National Museum Cardiff, 19th October 2023. Photography – Polly Thomas

Read the ArtReview interview with Alia Farid here.


ArtReview is a media partner of Artes Mundi 10.