NUVEEN BARWARI The Red Arrow Gallery Website CV
Nashville, TN | Painting, Sculpture, Mixed Media, Printmaking, Installation
Nuveen Barwari is a visual artist who employs collage to reflect on the fragmented state of diasporic living and membership in a stateless community. Barwari’s expansive practice includes installations; performances; co-hosting a podcast; collecting and repurposing artifacts from her community such as photos, rugs, fabrics, and Kurdish dresses; and an online shop that supplies apparel and art internationally. Barwari received a Bachelor of Science in Studio Art from Tennessee State University in 2019 and is a 2022 MFA candidate at the University of Tennessee, Knoxville. Barwari has worked with and completed projects with the Frist Art Museum, Oasis Center’s Art and Activism Series, Coop Gallery, and McGruder Social Practice Artist Residency. She has exhibited in numerous locations such as Kurdistan’s first Fashion Week (2018) in Erbil, Kurdistan region of Iraq, the Frist Art Museum (2019), the University of Michigan (2019), Sugar Gallery (2019) in Fayetteville, Arkansas, Zg Gallery (2020) in Chicago, 21c Museum Hotel (2021) in Nashville, Tennessee, Duhok Gallery (2021) in Duhok, Kurdistan and NGBK Gallery in Berlin Germany (2021). Barwari is represented by The Red Arrow Gallery in Nashville, TN.
My installations and mixed media works are spaces that explore the intervals between clashing cultures, languages, and places. I employ collage to reflect on the fragmented state of diasporic life. My work derives from the state of being in a place that is and is not one's home. In this “in-between” space, new cultural identities are constructed, reconstructed and constantly in a state of becoming.
I am interested in the space that hot Cheetos take up in a luggage while traveling to Kurdistan and the honey and fabric that my family and friends send back to us in return. I am forced to participate in a transcontinental, improvisational exchange of materials between Kurdistan and America. This exchange often extends beyond the studio, installations and manipulation of materials and into performances, podcasts, and through an online shop called Fufu Creations that supplies apparel and art internationally. I work with a wide assortment of material, both discarded items, trash, rugs, and family fabrics, and I recycle them to capture history and create new narratives. Living between different languages, cultures and places creates an imbalance; different modes of existence; a third place.
By mixing McChicken wrappers, or Hot Cheetos bags with traditional Kurdish fabrics; collecting cheap, oriental, mass produced rugs; transforming rice bags into apparel — I can create a space that explores contemporary fashion and pop art, as well as a commentary on the effects that high and low branding have on global capitalism. I critique and take ownership of orientalism by creating these installations that have elements of an over exaggerated domestic living space but simultaneously have the potential to become a place of commerce such as a bazaar and or even a place of worship. The abstraction and deconstruction of rugs into multiple patterns is connected to this idea of creating a new space or redrawing the borders to a stateless nation.