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Salma Arastu

Salma Arastu

As a woman, Hindu, Muslim, artist, and mother, I work to create harmony by expressing the universality of humanity through paintings, sculpture, and calligraphy. Inspired by the imagery, sculpture, and writings of my Indian heritage and Islamic spirituality, I use my artistic voice to break down the barriers that divide in order to foster peace and understanding. My works are greatly influenced by my studies and experiences in different cultures around the world. After graduating in Fine Arts from Maharaja Sayajirao University in Baroda, India, I lived and worked in Iran and Kuwait, where I was exposed to a wealth of Islamic arts and Arabic calligraphy. Calligraphy, miniatures, and the folk art of Islam and the Hindu tradition continue to influence my work today.

As a visual artist I have had almost 40 solo shows nationally and internationally, and have won several prestigious awards including the East Bay Community’s Fund for Artists in 2012 and 2014. the City of Berkeley’s Individual Artist Grant Award in 2014, 2015, and 2016. I have public art pieces on display throughout the country and have also written and published six books.

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