Trained as a painter, but also a creator of installations and performances, since the 1990s Taysir Batniji has worked mainly with video and photography, two “light” mediums that fit with a career which has involved much travelling to and from between Palestine and Europe. He documents Palestinian reality in a physically vivid, anti-spectacular way by focusing on displacement, intermediate states, and the inhibition of movement. These objective issues which are part and parcel of the social, political and cultural context in Palestine also reflect the position of the artist as a witness and contributor to the life of his country, but also the Western art scene.
Born in Gaza in 1966, Taysir Batniji studied art at Al-Najah University in Nablus, then continued in France at the École Nationale des Beaux-Arts de Bourges, Université Paris 8, Saint-Denis, and the Ecole Nationale des Beaux-Arts de Marseille. Since 2001 he has been invited to several residencies, notably in Germany, Senegal, France and Switzerland. He lives and works in Paris.
His work has been shown in numerous exhibitions in Europe and the Middle East, notably the Institut du Monde Arabe, Paris, the Jerusalem Show, Jerusalem, the Martin-Gropius-Bau, Berlin, the Kunstmuseen in Krefeld, the Vienna Kunsthalle, Witte de With, Rotterdam, and a number of festivals of video art.
Batniji has also taken part in international events such as the Venice Biennale in 2003 and 2009, the 8th Sharjah Biennial in 2007, the Havana Biennial in 2003 and the Alexandria Biennial in 1999 and 2001.