She graduated in Film & Media Studies at Sorbonne Nouvelle and Visual Arts at the Ecole Nationale d’Arts de Paris-Cergy.
Encompassing film, video, installation, photography, printmaking, and publishing, Khalili’s practice explores imperial and colonial continuums as epitomized by contemporary instances of illegal migration and the politics of memory of anti-colonial struggles and international solidarity. Deeply informed by the legacy of post-independence avant-gardes and the vernacular traditions of her native Morocco, Khalili’s approach develops strategies of storytelling at the intersection of history and micro-narratives. Combining documentary and conceptual practices, she investigates questions of self-representation, autonomous agency, and forms of resistance of communities rendered invisible by the nation-state model.
Khalili’s work has been subject to many international solo exhibitions, including at MACBA, Barcelona (2015, 2023); FFT Düsseldorf (2022); Bildmuseet, Umea (2021); Oslo Kunstforening and Fotogalleriet, Oslo (2020); the Museum of Fine Arts, Boston (2019); Museum Folkwang, Essen (2018); Jeu de Paume, Paris (2018); Secession, Vienna (2018); CAAC, Sevilla (2017); Wexner Center for the Arts, Columbus (2017); MoMA, New York (2016); Palais de Tokyo, Paris (2015); PAMM, Miami (2013).
Her work was also included in collective international manifestations such as the Sharjah Biennial (2011, 2023); the 2nd Lahore Biennial (2020); the 12th Bamako Biennial (2019); BienalSur, Buenos Aires (2019); Documenta 14, Athens (2017); the Milano Triennale (2017); the 55th Venice Biennale (2013); La Triennale, Paris (2012); the 18th Biennale of Sydney (2012).
She has participated in numerous collective exhibitions in international institutions such as the Kunsthaus Zurich (2015, 2023); Fondazione Sandretto, Turin (2021); Hammer Museum, Los Angeles (2021); CAM, St. Louis (2021); Art Sonje Center, Seoul (2020); Centre Pompidou, Paris (2018, 2020); Kunsthal Charlottenborg, Copenhagen (2019); Cardiff National Museum (2018); MAXXI, Rome (2018, 2021); MCA, Sydney (2016); Van AbbeMuseum, Eindhoven (2014); New Museum, New York (2014); Carré d’Art, Nîmes (2013); Tropen Museum, Amsterdam (2013); Haus Der Welt, Berlin (2010, 2013); Hayward Gallery, London (2012); South London Gallery (2012); Cité Internationale de l’Immigration, Paris (2012); Beirut Art Center (2011); Gulbenkian Foundation, Lisbon (2011); Museo Reina Sofía, Madrid (2008).
In 2023, she received the Sharjah Biennial Prize. A nominee of the Guggenheim’s Hugo Boss Prize (2018) and the Artes Mundi Prize (2018), she was also the recipient of the inaugural Terry Riley Humanitarian Award (2021); the Harvard’s Radcliffe Institute Fellowhip (2017-2018), the Ibsen Award (2017), the Abraaj Art Prize (2014), the Sam Art Prize (2013), daad Artists-in-Berlin (2012), and the Vera List Center for Art and Politics Fellowship, New York (2011-2013).
She is a Professor of Contemporary Art at the Angewandte University in Vienna, and a founding member of La Cinémathèque de Tanger, an artist-run non-profit organization.