Mai Refky is an independent artist who lives and works in Cairo, Egypt. She graduated of the faculty of Fine Arts, Painting department in Cairo in 1998. She studied Islamic Art and Architecture at the American University in Cairo from 1999 to 2000.
Since 1998, her work has been presented in five solo shows as well as exhibitions in Egypt, Germany, Italy, Spain, Austria, Croatia, Qatar, United Arab Emirates and Lebanon.
Her paintings have been acquired by The Museum of Egyptian Modern Art in Cairo, The Contemporary Art Museum of the City of Vukovar in Croatia, public and private collections in Egypt and abroad.
My work is mainly concerned with the contemporary human figure, and with putting the human figure in conversation with larger histories and forces. In my paintings I‘m always examining a fusion made up of many cultural identities, visual vocabularies, and artistic styles; many realities coming together in patterned impressions.
My human figures are in dialogue with these patterns and forces. My work explores the tension between individual desires for self-expression and the external patterns of society and history. My figures are animated by a duality: they desire serenity and individual escape, and yet they also yearn to be a part of this world.