Ilana Salama Ortar
Born 1949, Alexandria, Egypt. She is an interdisciplinary visual artist. She lives and works in Tel Aviv, Berlin, and London. Her work focuses on issues of migration, uprooting, exile and architecture of emergency.


Her family is an offspring of Spain’s expelled Jews, wandered across Europe before they reached Hebron. In the mid-19th century, as the economic situation in Palestine was bleak, they re-settled in Alexandria. Forced to leave Egypt with a one-way pass in 1952, Ilana Salama Ortar and her parents migrated to Haifa in Israel. They transited via the camp Le Grand Arénas, near Marseilles in France. She studied Art History and French Literature at the Hebrew University in Jerusalem and graduated M.A. in 1986.

In 2008, she was awarded a PhD degree with her thesis "Civic Performance Art and Architecture of Emergency” at the University of Roehampton, Surrey, UK.

From 1975 to 1988 she worked as curator of the Art Gallery, University of Haifa. From 1996 to 2011 she has been teaching at the School of Communication, Sapir Academic College in Sderot, the Film School of Tel Hai, the Tel Hai Academic College, and the Holon Institute of Technology.

From 2008 to 2011 she was the Head of Visual Art in the Department of Visual Art, Literature and Music, Academic College, Safed.[2] She was a visiting professor at the École des Beaux Arts de Lyon[3] in 1999-2000, and École des Beaux Arts de Marseille in 2012-2013.

She has given lectures and workshops in France, United States, England, Israel and Palestine. Ilana Salama Ortar was awarded the Israeli Lottery Award for Visual Arts (2012) and the Prize of the Ministry of Education in Israel for Visual Arts (2006).

Her work was supported by, among others, the Academic College of Safed, Marseille Provence 2013, Ateliers Euro-Méditerranée, Centre International de Création et de Formation Arts Électroniques of the École des Beaux Arts in Marseille, the Cité Internationale des Arts in Paris, and the Beaumarchais Foundation.