Mohammad Abou El Naga
Born in the Egyptian city of Tanta, Abouelnaga studied art and received his PhD in art philosophy in 1997. He was the first Middle Eastern artist to receive a grant from the Japan Foundation to study the arts of papermaking. In the past two decades, Abouelnaga made several solo exhibitions in Egypt and around the world that varied between painting, video and installation. He also represented Egypt in the Venice Biennial 2002 and received the First Prize of the Alexandria Biennial in 2001.
Abouelnaga founded Elnafeza for Contemporary Art & Development where he practices papermaking from raw environment friendly material. He is also fellow of Ashoka, the global association of the world’s leading social entrepreneurs. In 2007, Newsweek named Abouelnaga as one of 100 entrepreneurs who can change the world. He was also named a Goodwill Cultural Ambassador for Africa's by the President of Senegal.