Alexandra Handal is an artist who lives and works between London and Jerusalem. Born into a Palestinian family in Port-au-Prince, Haiti, Handal had a transnational upbringing. She has lived in a number of cities, among them: New York City, Paris, Boston and Berlin.
Handal’s short film, From the Bed & Breakfast Notebooks (2008) was selected for the prestigious New Contemporaries 2009 internationally juried exhibition which showcases emerging artists in the UK. It culminated in an exhibition at A Foundation, London (2009) and Cornerhouse, Manchester (2009). Her short film was described as a ‘quietly powerful political engagement’ in Studio International magazine (2009) and she was listed among the ‘few names to watch’ in the Guardian (2009).
Handal has shown her work in group exhibitions internationally, at the Rencontres Internationales Documentary Programme, Paris/Berlin/Madrid (2009 & 2010), Al-Hoash Gallery, Jerusalem (2009), Art Dubai (2009) DePaul University Museum (2005), and DUMBO Art Center, NY (2002). She had her first solo exhibition Alexandra Handal, Recent Work at the International Center of Bethlehem, Al-Kahf Gallery, Bethlehem, Palestine (2004).
Handal is currently completing a combined practice/theory PhD in Fine Art at Chelsea College of Art and Design, London. She is the recipient of the University of the Arts London Research Studentship Award (2004) and the Chelsea College of Art and Design Graduate Fund (2007 & 2009). She was a participant at the Royal Geographical Society with IBG, Annual International Conference (2009) and has been invited to present a paper for the upcoming Oral History Society Annual Conference in association with the Victoria Albert Museum (2010). She will be discussing the role of oral history in the making of her web-based artwork, Dream Homes property consultants that will be launched in 2011.
Handal obtained an MA in Studio Art at New York University (2001), a BFA in Painting and Minor in Art History at Boston University, Boston, MA (1997); and pursued parallel studies in Paris and Madrid. The year after she completed her undergraduate degree, Handal was selected for The 4th International Exhibition of Women’s Art at SOHO20 Gallery in NYC – a show that was juried by curator Leslie Jones from the Museum of Modern Art, NY (1998). She was an artist-in-residence at the School of Visual Arts NY (1999) and at Altos de Chavon in La Romana, Dominican Republic (2003). Handal was a Finalist for the Young Artist of the Year, Hassan Hourani Award from the A.M. Qattan Foundation, Ramallah, Palestine (2004).
Alexandra Handal is currently conducting research for her next short film, Sketches from the City of Whisperers to be exhibited at the Liverpool Biennial (2010).