The art of illuminated manuscripts is a disciplined process which involves the painstaking preparation of pigments and painting surfaces, as well as the development of a strong eye for detail and brush control. Nusra Latif Qureshi is trained in the art of the Mughal miniature painting tradition and has developed an extraordinary contemporary painting practice that engages with the rich, visual histories of South Asia.
Colonial photography of northern India and shahs (kings) from ancient Persian sources are referenced in her finely crafted paintings. These works are layered in subject and often use a pictorial fragment from a Mughal or Rajput miniature as a starting point. The historical symbolism of the feminine figure has been a central theme in her work. Her contemporary paintings reveal a more complex engagement with these stereotypes, realised through the fragmentation and overlaying of images.
Nusra Latif Qureshi is part of an important generation of Pakistani artists who have revived and innovated the traditional art of Mughal miniature painting. She lectured at the National School of Art in Lahore from 1995 to 1999, migrating to Australia in 2001 to take up postgraduate study. She has shown in numerous solo and group exhibitions across Asia, the United States, Europe and Australia, including ‘Karkhana: A Contemporary Collaboration’, Aldrich Contemporary Art Museum, Connecticut, USA, in 2005; and ‘Beyond Borders: Art of Pakistan’, National Gallery of Modern Art, Mumbai, India, in 2005.