Driss Ouadahi (DZ/DE)


Algerian & German. Born in Casablanca, Morocco, in 1959.
Lives and works in Dsseldorf, Germany.

Driss Ouadahi is a painter who takes as his subject matter the overlooked and marginal spaces of the city, such as social housing developments and wire fencing surrounding desolate empty spaces. The images he shows us - whether buildings from the outskirts of any large city, empty lands encircled by metal fences, or mere zones of passage - are tendentially non-places, or expectant places, that have a diffuse nature, where no one recognises themselves and few linger. Ouadahi sets up a tension within the paintings by contrasting this stark subject matter, devoid of human presence, with subtle gradations of harmonious colour, and plays games with pictorial depth, which can be fascinating and confusing in equal measure. By densely layering different architectural fragments, his works suggest a connection between landscape painting and modernist abstraction. There is always an awareness in these works of the paradoxical nature of painting, which exists both as a flat surface and a window opening onto an imagined depth.


1988 1994

Kunstakademie Dsseldorf
, Germany

1984 1987

cole Nationale Suprieure des Beaux-Arts,
Algiers, Algeria

Artist Residency


ETANEO, Museum im Busch, Forum fr Neue Kunst, Kalkfeld, Namibia


Centre d'Art Contemporain Istres, Marseille, France



Grand Prix Lopold Sdar Senghor, Dakar Biennale 

Individual Exhibitions



Systeme der Abgrenzung -Malerei von Driss Ouadahi, Von der Heyt Kunsthalle, Wuppertal, Germany

Transposition, Caroline Pags Gallery, Lisbon
Breach in the silence, Hosfelt Gallery, San Francisco

Inside Zenith, LawrieShabibi Gallery, Dubai

Implosion, Caroline Pags Gallery, Lisbon
Trans-location, Hosfelt Gallery, San Francisco

Breathing Space, LawrieShabibi Gallery, Dubai (cat.)


Horst Schuler Gallery, Dsseldorf, Germany



Densit, Hosfelt Gallery, New York (cat.)



Herbert-Weisenburger-Stiftung, Rastatt, Germany (cat.)



dok25a (with Yun Lee), Dsseldorf, Germany



Unexpected Neighborhoods, Hosfelt Gallery, New York 

Another place, Another me,Hosfelt Gallery, San Francisco



Knstlerverein Malkasten, Dsseldorf, Germany

Atelier AM ECK, Dsseldorf, Germany



Centre d'Art Contemporain d'Istres, Marseille, France



Institut Franais, Dsseldorf, Germany

Klinkhammer-Metzner Gallery, Dsseldorf, Germany



JASIM Gallery, Dsseldorf, Germany



RAUM X, Dsseldorf, Germany



ISMA Gallery, Algiers, Algeria

Group Exhibitions (selection)


Class Relations-Phantoms of Perception, Kunstverein, Hamburg, Germany

Le 1er Salon du Dessin dAlger,Muse Public National d'Art Moderne & Contemporain, Algiers

L'Un et l'Autre - A Project of Kader Attia and Jean-Jacques Lebel,Palais de Tokyo, Paris


Beautiful Stranger, Museum De Wieger, Deurne, Netherlands

Perpetual Construction: A Dialogue with the House of Jean Prouv III, CAB

Art Center, Brussels


La Ville au Loin, Les Turbulence, FRAC Centre, Orlans, France

Unseen, Lawrie Shabibi Gallery, Dubai, UAE

20th Anniversary Exhibition, Hosfelt Gallery, San Francisco, CA


Walls and Margins, Barjeel Art Fondation, Sharjah, UAE

Promenons-nous, lAbbaye, Annecy-le-vieux, France

191 S, Wallpainting II, Weltkunstzimmer, Dsseldorf, Germany


Memory, Place, Desire, The Cantor Fitzgerald Gallery, Haverford College, PA, USA

Dak'ART Contemporary Art Biennale, curated by Elise Atangana, Abdelkader Damani, Smooth Ugochukwu Nzewi,Rufisque, Senegal


La Route Bleue, Villa Empain-Boghossian Foundation, Brussels (cat.)

25 ans de crativit arabe, curated by Ihab El Laban,Institut du Monde Arabe, Paris 

100%_100 ans, 100 artistes, curated by Mohamed Rachdi, Espace d'Art-Socit Gnrale, Casablanca, Morocco


Horizons croiss, Asilah Festival, curated by Brahim Alaoui, Asilah, Morocco

Desviar do Olhar, Caroline Pags Gallery, Lisbon, Portugal

Semi-permeable, Hosfelt Gallery, New York


Le Retour, 3rd International Festival of Contemporary Art (FIAC), MAMA, Algiers, Algeria (cat.)

Opening the Doors, Collecting Middle Eastern Art, presented by Abu Dhabi Art Fair, Gallery One, Emirates Palace, Abu Dhabi, UAE

Magreb: Dos Orillas, curated by Brahim Alaoui, Crculo de Bellas Artes, Madrid, Spain

Future of a Promise, curated by Lina Lazaar, 54th Venice Biennale, Venice, Italy (cat.)

Geometric Days, curated by Jeanette Ingberman, Papo Colo and Herb Tam, Exit Art, New York


Cairo Biennale, cb12, Egypt (cat.)

Pulse Art Fair New York, rep. by Hosfelt Gallery, New York

Einfluss 8 from Dsseldorf, Hosfelt Gallery, New York and San Francisco

archiTECHtonica, CU Art Museum, University of Colorado, CO

In full Color, Hosfelt Gallery, New York


Looking Inside Out, curated by Maaretta Jaukkuri and Cristina Ricupero, Kunstnernes Hus, Oslo, Norway (cat.)

Crossings, Bab Rouah / Bab El Kebir, Rabat, Morocco (cat.)

Prifriks, Centre d'Art de Neuchtel, Switzerland (cat.)



Watching the detectives, Meierhof Projekt, Dsseldorf, Germany (cat.)

Iconoclastes "Les territoires de lesprit", curated by Kader Attia, Galerie Anne de Villepoix, Paris

Art entre quatre murs, Muse des Abattoirs, Toulouse, France 

Aqua Winwood Art Fair Miami, rep. by Hosfelt Gallery, Miami, FL


Pattern vs. Decoration, Hosfelt Gallery, New York and San Francisco

WP8 Activ, Tease Art Fair, Cologne, Germany

Alger Capitale de la Culture Arabe, Museum of Modern & Contemporary Art, Algiers, Algeria (cat.)


Sonntag, Hosfelt Gallery, San Francisco


Centre dArt Chteau de Servires, Marseille, France (cat.)



Bergische Kunstausstellung, Museum Baden, Solingen, Germany (cat.)


Les effets du voyage, Palais de la Culture, Le Mans, France (cat.)

Al Fann II, Dock 4, Kassel, Germany




Driss Ouadahi takes on fences inlatest exhibit, by Jessica Zack, in sfgate.com, July 13, 1916

CPG Podcasts #1: Driss Ouadahi, Caroline Pags Gallery podcast series, Lisbon, June 2013

Impressions of the city in blurred lines, by Kelly Carke, in Khaleej Times, December 22, 2014

Driss Ouadahi, Le plus classique des contemporains, by Syham Weigant, in DIPTYK Magazine n24, pp. 44-49, June-September 2014

Dakar Biennale brings modern African art to the world stage, by Teo Kermeliotis, for CNN.com, May 29, 2014

Implosion by Driss Ouadahi, by Julian Elias Bronner, in Artforum.com Critics' Picks, August 2013

Driss Ouadahi pinta os bairros da imigrao, by Luisa Soares de Oliveira, in Ipsilon-Publico, p. 22, July 12, 2013

La Photographie n'a pas la mme porte picturale que la peinture, by Fayal Mtaoui, in ElWatan.com, Le Quotidien Indpendant, December 9, 2011

by Doug McClement, in ARTnews, Feb. 2011

 Driss Ouadahi, by Scott Indrisek, in Modern Painters, p.72, Dec. 2010 / Jan. 2011

Knstler in Dsseldorf-Driss Ouadahi, Sog in den Raum, by Thomas Hirsch, in Biograph, p. 69, Nov. 2010

Now Showing: Driss Ouadahi, by Pilar Viladas, in New York Times T Magazine Blog, Oct. 1, 2010

Galerierundgang: Entdeckungen in der Scheune, by Helga Meister, in Westdeutsche Zeitung, Jan. 3, 2008.

Galleries: The Paint Strokes Between Realism and Abstraction, by Kenneth Baker, in San Francisco Chronicle, pp. E1, E10, Dec. 1, 2007

Public Collections (selection)

Barjeel Art Foundation, Sharjah, UAE

FRAC Centre Val de Loire, Orlans, France

Herbert-Weisenburger-Stiftung, Rastatt, Germany

Kamel Lazaar Foundation, Geneva, Switzerland

Kunstmuseum Dsseldorf, Germany

Nadour Collection, Germany

Stadtsparkasse Baden-Baden, Germany

Caroline Pages address