NUVEEN BARWARI The Red Arrow Gallery Website CV
Nashville, TN | Painting, Sculpture, Mixed Media, Printmaking, Installation
Nuveen Barwari is a Kurdish American multidisciplinary artist. Barwari’s art is influenced by her family histories, being born in the U.S in 1995, and spending her adolescent years in Duhok, Kurdistan. She completed a Bachelor’s of Science in Studio Art from Tennessee State University in 2019 and is a 2022 MFA candidate at the University of Tennessee, Knoxville. Bringing together the fragmented state of diasporic living and membership in a stateless community, utilizing painting, photography, screen printing, mixed media and installations, Barwari aims to spark social commentary about migration, the struggles of refugee resettlement, transnational negotiations of self, and managing Islamophobia. She is the founder of the brand Fufu Creations, supplying apparel and art internationally. Fufu Creations was a featured designer in Kurdistan’s first ever fashion week in 2018.
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.