Xenia Nikolskaya’s Photographs: Finalists for a Prestigious Award 

Award-winning Russian-Swedish photographer Xenia Nikolskaya, who is currently based in Cairo, recently had two of her remarkable photographs selected as finalists for the 2024 BNL PBN Paribas Award at the MIA Foto Fair.

A room with a blue wall and a mirror

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Villa Casdagli, Garden City, Cairo, 2010 
A large building with many floors

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Simon Arzt Department Store, Port Said, 2010


The photographs Villa Casdagli, Garden City, Cairo, 2010, and Simon Arzt Department Store, Port Said, 2010 were showcased in Nikolskaya’s book Dust: Egypt’s Forgotten Architecture (revised and expanded edition, AUC Press, 2022), with the former also featured on the book cover. Dust is a stunning photographic compilation of Egypt’s abandoned palaces and grand buildings.

Xenia Nikolskaya is also the author of The House My Grandfather Built, which won the 2021 Swedish Photobook Award.

Praise for Dust:

“Her painterly compositions and lambent lighting (which in most cases is natural) serve to give the impression that these are stage sets, only waiting for the arrival of the actors.”—Voyager

“Dramatic and haunting. . . . . succeeds in capturing the glitz and glamor of a past century as a marzipan filling in dark chocolate, without staging her pictures in an overly sweet way. The illustrated book Dust: Egypt’s Forgotten Architecture is thus a wonderfully delicate pastime.”—dis:orient Magazine

“The Cairo [Nikolskaya] captures with her lens is a European city, its grandeur and dilapidation devoid of exotic oriental motifs and shown as somehow frozen in time.”—The National

“Nikolskaya’s lens expertly captures an eerie forlornness in some of the places depicted in her book, most of which are rundown and ominous. However, what is perhaps most remarkable about her style is how she directs the viewer’s eye to detail after detail, weaving a rich narrative.”—The National

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