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Home is where the art is: Nosheen Iqbal’s Persian painting in her Richardson dining room

Nosheen Iqbal.
Nosheen Iqbal
Nosheen Iqbal stands by a Persian miniature painting featured in the dining room of her Richardson home.

Occupation: Designer and fiber artist
Age: 44
Neighborhood: Richardson
Pronouns: she/her

Art habits

Last song listened to: Foals’ “Two Steps, Twice”
Performance you’re looking forward to: Her daughter’s first orchestra performance
Favorite artist: Matisse
Hobbies: Embroidery, fiber art, woodworking, ceramics, reading

A painting of a peacock.
Courtesy of Nosheen Iqbal
The Persian miniature painting of a peacock was created by artist Mostafa Fotovat.

Can you explain what this piece of art is? 

It's a miniature that's probably about 5 inches by about 3 inches. It's a hand-painted peacock on a bone-type material. So the detail the artist puts in, it's with a very fine brush. A lot of it is done with a magnifying glass just to kind of pick up all those sort of areas.

If you were to cut through the frame, you would see the pieces of wood that travel through it. So from the front, there's a tessellation that goes around the frame. But it's built up by linear pieces of wood going back into the frame.

Where did you get this piece of art from? 

So I was actually part of an art fair that came to Dallas that was sponsored by Saatchi Art. It's called the Other Art Fair. This particular artisan, although they're based in Iran, they also live in New York. He was traveling with his daughter, who helps him out. So he was exhibiting at the same time [and] that's how I became familiar with his artwork.

Where is the art in your home and why did you place it there? 

It's in the dining area. I feel like the dining area, it's a place where we all congregate as a family and when guests come over to visit. I have it mixed in a composition of other pieces; two of the pieces I made myself [are] embroidered art pieces. Then I have some photographs of Pakistan when I went on a trip a couple of years ago.

So just in a group, it's the only pop of color that's a little bit more vibrant than the other pieces. But it sits well because it has that same underlying theme as far as the craftsmanship goes.

Why is this piece of art meaningful to you? 

It goes back to my own art practice. I call my own art practice a slow craft, because the skill and technique just takes a long time to kind of reach to the last piece of artwork.

There's sort of, like, a flow of how I design my work. The same goes for this miniature. Because it's painted in such detail, there's a lot of time that's taken into it, and then the frame itself speaks to that as well. So I feel like there's a parallel with my artwork, and so that's why I have a lot of respect for that technique.

What does this art say about you? 

I grew up looking at miniatures. I was very much influenced by not figurative art, but paintings of animals. I never actually pursued that sort of subject matter. I went the geometric way, kind of the sacred geometry.

So when I see a lot of the figurative, a lot of paintings that are of animals, that really speaks to me because it's something very different. It's a contrast from what I do as a practice.

What’s one word to describe how this artwork makes you feel? 


Arts Access is an arts journalism collaboration powered by The Dallas Morning News and KERA.

This community-funded journalism initiative is funded by the Better Together Fund, Carol & Don Glendenning, City of Dallas OAC, Communities Foundation of Texas, The Dallas Foundation, Eugene McDermott Foundation, James & Gayle Halperin Foundation, Jennifer & Peter Altabef and The Meadows Foundation. The News and KERA retain full editorial control of Arts Access’ journalism.

Elizabeth Myong is KERA’s Arts Collaborative Reporter. She came to KERA from New York, where she worked as a CNBC fellow covering breaking news and politics. Before that, she freelanced as a features reporter for the Houston Chronicle and a modern arts reporter for Houstonia Magazine.