Kaya Behkalam is a visual artist, film maker, and writer, living in Berlin and Cairo. He obtained a PhD in Media Art from the Bauhaus University Weimar/Germany, an MFA (Meisterschüler) in Experimental Media Design and a BFA in Visual Communications from the University of Arts Berlin. From 2012-2015 he served as an Assistant Professor of Time-based Media at the Art Department of the American University in Cairo and was director of the Sharjah Art Gallery at AUC.
His video-, installation- and text-based works explore the entanglements of historiography, image and media politics, as in his current long term research project SEEING HISTORY – The Augmented Archive, which explores archival practices and changing medialities of the historical in the context of post-revolutionary Cairo.
For his work he has been awarded various stipends and awards, such as the Dialogue Award of the European Media Art Festival 2012. Among other places his art works have been shown at the HKW and Martin-Gropius-Bau Berlin, Berlinische Galerie, Queens Museum, Eye Beam, and Sheila C. Johnson Design Center New York, Centre Pompidou Paris, Reina Sofia Museum Madrid, Azad Gallery Tehran, Kunstverein Heidelberg, the 3rd Guangzhou Triennial, IDFA Amsterdam and the Kurzfilmtage Oberhausen. He is the co-editor of a series of books on contemporary Egyptian artists (2015, Revolver Publishing, together with Anneka Lenssen), as well as the publication “Damascus: Tourists, Artists, Secret Agents” (2010). He is the co-founder of the artist group RELOADING IMAGES, an initiative that works on collective projects of artistic research. Since June 2018 he is the director of the non-profit art association Künstlerhof Frohnau, a studio space for artistic production in the North of Berlin.