Rania Matar was born and raised in Lebanon and moved to the U.S. in 1984. As a Lebanese-born American artist and mother, her cross-cultural experience and personal narrative inform her photography.
Matar’s work has been widely exhibited in museums worldwide in solo and group exhibitions, including the Museum of Fine Arts, Boston, Carnegie Museum of Art, National Museum of Women in the Arts, Minneapolis Institute of Art, Rollins Museum of Art, Fotografiska, Institut du Monde Arabe, and more. It is part of the permanent collections of several museums, institutions, and private collections. A mid-career retrospective of her work was recently on view at Cleveland Museum of Art, Amon Carter Museum of American Art, and the American University of Beirut Museum.
She currently has 2 solo museum exhibitions: “SHE” at the Huntsville Museum of Art in Huntsville, Alabama and “Oceans At My Door” at the Fitchburg Museum of Art in Fitchburg, Massachusetts. Her images are currently also part of a traveling exhibition “Women Defining Women” about Women Artists from the Middle East at the Los Angeles County Museum of Art.
Matar is currently a finalist for the Oskar Barnack Award 2023. She received several awards including: a 2022 Leica Women Foto Award, 2018 Guggenheim Fellowship, 2017 Mellon Foundation artist-in-residency grant, 2021 (and 2011, 2007) Massachusetts Cultural Council Artist Fellowships, and a 2011 Griffin Museum of Photography Legacy Award. She was a finalist for the Arnold New Prize for New Directions in Photographic Portraiture, the Outwin Boochever Portrait Competition with an exhibition at the Smithsonian National Gallery of Art in Washington DC, and for the Taylor Wessing Prize with an exhibition at the National Portrait Gallery in London. In 2008 she was a finalist for the Foster Award at the ICA/Boston, with an accompanying solo exhibition.
She published four books: SHE, 2021; L’Enfant-Femme, 2016; A Girl and Her Room, 2012; Ordinary Lives, 2009.
Rania Matar is represented by Galerie Tanit Beirut/Munich.