Youssef Nabil began his photography career in 1992 by staging tableaux in which his subjects acted out melodramas recalling film stills from the golden age of Egyptian cinema. In the late 1990s, while working as a photographer’s assistant in studios in New York and Paris, Nabil began photographing artists and friends. He produced formal portraits, while experimenting with different formats. He placed his subjects in a dream realm on the edge of awareness, far from their daylight selves.
On his return to Egypt in 1999, he further developed his hand-painted photography with portraits of writers, singers, and film stars of the Arab world. During these years, and especially since returning to New York and Paris, he has produced self-portraits that reflect his dislocated life away from Egypt.
Youssef Nabil has been represented by la Galerie Nathalie Obadia, Paris/Brussels, since 2011.