An Interview with Suzi Nassif

An Interview with the artist Suzi Nassif

Koral Dasgupta writes about her meeting with Suzi F Nassif. Let’s see what she has to convey to us after her meeting:

The meeting explores Suzi Nassif’s personal life and her inspirations and challenges that she has to face in that part of the world.

“Painting is a blind man’s profession. He paints not what he sees, but what he feels, what he tells himself about what he has seen.” – Picasso

I was instantly reminded of this quote when I got a chance to meet this highly talented Lebanese painter through Instagram. Her work is full of life and triggers curiosity. Her paintings communicate with you at personal level. Her favorite painting areas are emotions, women and faith.

Suzi boldly experiments with style and colours. Her paintings tell a unique story.  Suzi says that oil gives her time to work through different stages and layers of paintings. It also gives her ability to strike right fusion of colour, shadow and depth. She prefers acrylic as they dry up fast.

Dasgupta explores Nassif’s vision of women and interprets that the artist has nurtured chain of thoughts on varying roles of women. As per Suzi, her environment and her gender has shaped up her thoughts on women and through her art, she attempts to capture struggle of women, their story and their background.

The ideas of Suzi on womanhood are strong and shaped by the quality education that she has received. She was deeply affected by the Lebanon war. She believes that this gave birth to the artist inside her and this is how she started painting as she felt painting was her only exile. But as per Nassif, this pushed her to expand her horizons and explore other areas of painting. She says that art is the main outlet of her feelings. She feels strong affinity towards effects of colors, textures and emotional echo towards strong composition and design.

She says that her main goal is to create living emotions in her paintings. The artist did her first solo exhibition as he felt that her work looked like her. It expresses all the comedies as well as tragedies that she was encountering personally and socially. She started making living from what was her passion.

Nassif believes that she sometimes experiences artsy coma where she cannot create something remarkable. The situation is quite common and happens to artists. She says that the same happened to her three months back when she simply decided to let go but her heart assured her that she must simply let the moment pass and no human can create brilliant masterpieces non-stop. She admits that she has now learned to make the best of it as in those times, an artist’s conscious grows richly and deeply.

Nassif grew up reading Kahlil Gibran’s poetry. No doubt Lebanon is rich in culture and beauty but the war induced horror impacted the thinking of region’s people. Nassif draws her inspiration from everything in Lebanon.

Being part of Middle East, the artist has to face a lot of restrictions. The artist says that when it comes to religion, politics or nudity, she follows the rules. Nassif agrees that censorship surely challenges the artist in many ways. She agrees that Dubai is increasingly becoming aware of art and she is getting a lot of appreciation and recognition here.

Suzi has not let restrictions lower her spirits. Arty lovers have welcomed her and wait for her to paint more and she has taken no time to emerge as brilliant artist in the region.