Yassine Balbzioui (b.1972, Morocco) lives and works in Marrakesh. Balbzioui holds a Master of Fine Arts from the School of Fine Arts in Casablanca, Morocco (1996) and Superior National Diploma ART and MEDIA from the School of Fine Art in Bordeaux, France (2001). His work plays with conventions and shifts between media. The mask, a recurrent motif that has continually captivated Balbzioui, plays a pivotal role in his work as he perceives society to be fundamentally reliant on appearances. His works continually lead the viewer to question the notions of sincerity and hypocrisy or truth and lies. It is hard to miss the absence of the human face in Yassine’s work, as the paintings are marked with animals and birds, often referring to bestiary, representing stories or scenes depending on the characteristics of the animals and their similarities to human habits and characteristics.

Solo exhibitions include The Circus in My Head, Kristin Hjellegjerde Gallery, London, UK (2024); Floating Assemblies, Iwalewahaus, Bayreuth, Germany (2023); Almost Grown Up, Vestfossen Kunstlaboratorium Museum, Finland (2023); Charades, MCC Gallery, Marrakesh, Morocco (2022-23); Ouf!, Studio Quatrozezerohuit, Dakar, Senegal (2022); The Funny Games, Kristin Hjellegjerde Gallery, Berlin (2021); Wild Gardens, Kristin Hjellegjerde Gallery, London (2019); MAD, Iwalewahaus, Bayreuth, Germany (2019); Half Flying, Kristin Hjellegjerde Gallery, Berlin (2018); Golden Wall, Gallery Shart, Casablanca, Morocco (2018); AKKA, with Kristin Hjellegjerde Gallery, Paris, France (2018); Porcellanographie: Future traces, Iwalewahaus, Bayreuth, Germany  (2016); Splash…, and Galerie Shart, Casablanca, Morocco (2016).


Group exhibitions include Complicit and Complicated: True Stories & Rumours, Sofiatown Arts Akademy, Johannesburg, South Africa (2023); AKAA Art & Design Fair, Galerie Anne de Villepoix, Paris, France (2023); L'appartement 22, Bensouda, Morocco (2022); Summer Group Show, Curated by Othman Lazraq (online), Taymour Grahne Projects (2021); Facing the Sun, Kristin Hjellegjerde Gallery, Schloss Görne, Germany (2021); Moroccan Trilogy, Museo Reina Sofia, Madrid, Spain (2021); Traits d'unions.s, Manifesta 13, European Nomadic Bienniale, Marseille, France (2020) ; Kubatana, Vesfossen Kunstlaboratorium, Norway (2019); Karachi Biennial, Pakistan (2019); Dak’Art Biennale, 13th Biennial of African Contemporary Art, Dakar, Senegal (2018); The Matter, Dak’Art OFF, Dakar, Senegal (2018); Traversées (Yassine Balbzioui, carte blanche Galerie Shart), Comptoir des Mines Galerie, Marrakesh, Morocco (2018); 40th Moussem of Assilah, Morocco (2018); E-moi, al Maaden Museum of African Contemporary art, Marrakesh, Morocco (2017); Casadrawing 2, Musée de la Fondation a. Slaoui, Casablanca, Morocco (2017), FIAV Festival International de vidéo, Casablanca, Morocco (2017), Génération Flash, proposition de Younès Baba-ali, Fondation Alliances, Casablanca, Morocco (2017). 


Highlights and collections 

In 2020, Yassine Balbzioui’s work featured in the renowned European Nomadic Biennial, Manifesta 13, under the theme The Port: Where Histories Lie at the Musée d’Histoire de Marseille. Yassine Balbzioui’s work can be found in prominent public collections such as MACAAL, Marrakesh (Morocco); Alliances Foundation (Morocco); Es saadi, Marrakesh (Morocco); The Museum of Bank al-Maghrib at Rabat (Morocco); Iwalewahaus Musem (Germany); The Bunker Artspace Museum (USA).