Born in Mumbai, India to a Dutch mother and Indian father, and completing studies in Hong Kong and Sydney, Nafisa Naomi’s beautiful heritage and experience is visible in all the work she does. Nasifa dabbles in various worlds, including the art world and wildlife conservation. Her interest in the human condition and life on this planet, combined with her welcoming character has given her a strong connection with international audiences as a speaker, teacher and presenter across these spaces.
Always having a keen interest in helping people, Nasifa started her studies in medicine before using art as a gateway for raising research funds and support for various projects including Jeans for Genes Day and wildlife conservation.
Nafisa is widely known for her large wildflower and conservation artworks which focus primarily on the natural world around us. Channeling her love for studying micro-surgery, she uses her art to show the beauty and intricacy of microscopic things, making them larger than life.
“I don’t ever want to paint ugly images, I only want to paint beauty.”
For more than 15 years Nafisa has been pursuing her dream with an intensity and drive known well to her family and friends. Her productivity is second to none, and it is obvious that her ability to pause, observe, process and replicate information into beautiful pieces of art is merely an instinct to her.
Nafisa has always found beauty in nature, but notes that over time she watched people ignore all the native flowers as they got caught up in the rush of day to day life. She saw how oblivious people could be to the world around them, and decided to take fallen flowers and pods to capture moments in time that the people around her seemed almost too busy to enjoy. One of her most known artworks, Beauty Pageant, is an ode to this concept, a way to show off the beauty in each individual native flower, even through all of their similarities.
The Beginning of Tuscan Temptations
Nafisa’s book began as a personal journey, composed over several years of travel to and from Italy. It was a cheap journal that Nafisa originally had no intention of sharing, a keepsake of her travels and the inspiration she took from the world around her.
The book has been more difficult for Nafisa to cultivate as it is predominantly about herself, whereas her art has always been external, looking at the beauty in our natural world.
Although Nafisa’s art focuses on the natural world, the striking man-made structures throughout Italy engaged her in a way that others have not. Nafisa speaks to this, saying that “the cradle of the Renaissance Florence dominated my interest in the arts and history.”
Nafisa would travel to Italy frequently and carried a sketchbook with her to occupy her time. The sketchbook was purely for herself, to document and delve into the many historical features and doorways she would embrace each time she visited.
“There are only so many cups of coffee you can drink while walking around for 3-4 hours. I would bring my book, sit and pretend I was listening to music so people would leave me alone and I’d start drawing. The rest of Tuscany holds me spellbound with its wealth of beauty.”
Nafisa hosted a pre-book launch on February 10th at The Fenwick restaurant. The evening consisted of individuals sharing stories and being given an insight into the makings of the book.
Tuscan Temptations is a 100 page hand torn, hand-bound, hardcover book signed and numbered by Nafisa. The book is a visual representation of elements of Tuscany with a forward by Peter Collins. It allows the audience to get lost within the intricately drawn artworks and travel with Nafisa through her memories and experiences of Italy. The book comes presented in a commemorative fine linen bag, printed for the book launch and marking the Italian Day of Unification (March 17th). Each copy of the book is accompanied by a pair of signed and numbered prints.
Only 1,000 of the exquisite books will be made as a tribute to the unquestionable beauty and romance that is ‘Tuscany’. If you wish to invest in a copy of your own, you will be given a VIP invitation to the book launch on March 17th at the Art Gallery of NSW.