b. 1988, Johannesburg, South Africa.

Lives and works  in Cape Town, South Africa.

Karakashian obtained her Bachelor of Art in Fine Art degree at the Michaelis School of Fine Art at the University of Cape Town in 2011. On graduation, she was awarded both the Judy Steinberg Painting Prize and the Simon Gerson Distinction Award. She went on to graduate with a Masters degree in Fine Art from the same institution in 2015.

Most recently, Karakashian’s solo exhibition, entitled A rhythm for falling, at the Sabrina Amrani Gallery in Madrid, Spain opened on the 17th April 2019, and will run until 29th July 2019. Karakashian’s work was also included in SMAC Gallery’s group presentation at the 2019 Investec Cape Town Art Fair; and is a part of the group exhibition, Material Insanities, at MACAAL in Marrakech, Morocco. Karakashian was recently included in SMAC Gallery’s presentation at the 13th edition of Art Dubai, in Dubai, UAE. Karakashian’s work is currently up on exhibition as part of the group show, Filling in the Gaps, at the Iziko South African National Gallery. In 2018, Karakashian participated in Ravelled Threads, a group exhibition at Sean Kelly Gallery in New York City, USA; and presented her work as part of SMAC Gallery’s booth at the Joburg Art Fair in Johannesburg, South Africa. Karakashian’s  solo exhibition, entitled here they passed, was up on exhibition at SMAC Gallery in Cape Town towards the end of 2018; and her solo show, In on itself, at the Marianne Ibrahim Gallery in Seattle, USA, concluded in December 2018.

In 2017, Karakashian presented her solo exhibition, entitled unbecoming, at SMAC Gallery in Johannesburg to coincide with the release of her self-titled publication, with text by Khanya Mashabela. Karakashian was the artist in residence at Capo d’Arte in Gagliano del Capo, Italy in 2016. The residency culminated in a solo presentation, self-titled Alexandra Karakashian, at the Villa Medici in Gagliano del Capo. Additional solo presentations in 2016 include: Passage, a special project at 1:54 Contemporary African Art Fair in London, UK; and GROUND at SMAC Gallery in Cape Town, South Africa. In 2015 Karakashian presented Shifting Grounds in Cape Town, South Africa; and collaborated with performance artist Buhlebeswe Siwani in Land, a performance piece selected for Infecting the City Public Arts Programme.

Karakashian is represented in numerous private and public collections including: the Iziko South African National Gallery, South Africa; the Spier Collection, South Africa; the Darvesh Collection, UAE; The Royal Portfolio collection, South Africa; and the Luciano Benetton Collection, Italy.


Karakashian’s  solo exhibition titled A rhythm for falling is on show from 17 April to 29 July 2019 at  Sabrina Amrani Gallery in Madrid, Spain. She also exhibited as part a group presentation with the same gallery at ARCOlisboa in Lisbon, Portugal from 16 to 20 May 2019.

Alexandra Karakashian’s work is currently up on exhibition as part of Material Insanity. Gathering more than 30 artists from the continent and its diaspora, Material Insanity explores the material and its symbolic significance in a plurality of dimensions and formal experiences. Through installations made from everyday objects or materials, the exhibition combines various discourses in the service of a new aesthetic. The exhibition will run from 26 February to 22 September 2019 at the Museum of African Contemporary Art Al Maaden (MACAAL) in Marrakech, Morocco.

Karakashian’s work is also up on exhibition as part of the group show, Filling in the Gaps, at the Iziko South African National Gallery in Cape Town, South Africa. The exhibition will run from 15 February to 31 October 2019.

A rhythm for falling | Sabrina Amrani | Madrid, Spain | 2019

In on Itself | Mariane Ibrahim Gallery | Seattle, USA | 2018

here they passed | SMAC Gallery | Cape Town, South Africa | 2018

unbecoming | SMAC Gallery | Johannesburg, South Africa | 2017

Alexandra Karakashian | Villa Medici | Gagliano del Capo, Italy | 2016

Passage | 1:54 Contemporary African Art Fair: Special Project (SMAC Gallery) |  Somerset House | London, UK | 2016

GROUND | SMAC Gallery | Cape Town, South Africa | 2016

Shifting Grounds | Michaelis Galleries, University of Cape Town (UCT) | Cape Town, South Africa | 2015
Land | Infecting the City: Public Arts Festival | Cape Town, South Africa | 2015

Passages | The Black Box | Cape Town, South Africa | 2012

Emilie Gambade | Daily Maverick | At Art Dubai, diversity of works and cultures prevails | 18 March 2019 – PDF

Cultured Mag | 10 Artists on their 2018 Discovery 27 December 2018 – PDF

Siobhan Keam | ArtThrob | In Context: Frieze London and 1:54 | 18 October 2016 – PDF

Lloyd Pollak | ArtAfrica | Such Sweet Thunder: Alexandra Karakashian and the Catastrophic Imagination | 13 September 2016 – PDF

Isabella Kuijers | ArtThrob | A Dark Ascending Horizon: Alexandra Karakashian’s ‘Ground’18 August 2016 – PDF

Sean O’Toole | Wanted Online | Young African Artists – Alexandra Karakashian | September 2013 – PDF